outdoor keypad at back door

If you need a simple, effective, and secure way to control access at doors and gates around your property, a keypad is a great solution. And if you’re concerned about using keypad entry systems at exterior entrances, don’t worry — there are outdoor keypads just for those purposes.

Read on to learn more about outdoor keypads, where they’re used, and the benefits they offer. We’ll also help you choose the best outdoor keypad for your building.

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What is an outdoor keypad?

An outdoor keypad is a type of keyless entry system used to control access at exterior entrances. By installing a keypad at your outdoor entrance, you can keep the door or gate locked to maintain security while providing an easy way for authorized people to gain access.

Keypads are simple devices with a series of numbered buttons or a touchscreen interface with numbers. Tenants open keypad-controlled doors and gates by entering a PIN code. Some outdoor keypads also pair with a mobile app, enabling tenants to gain access using their smartphones.

An access control keypad is most effective outdoors when used at auxiliary entrances and doors or gates that only building residents and staff need to access.

That said, you can use outdoor keypads in two ways:

  1. As a standalone keypad access control device for a single entryway.
  2. As part of an integrated access control system (for example, you can integrate keypads at secondary entrances with a video intercom system at the main entrance).


Watch how the ButterflyMX keypad works:


Are outdoor keypads weatherproof?

Yes, outdoor keypads are weatherproof so they can withstand conditions outside. Keypads designed for outdoor use have an IP (Ingress Protection) rating, which refers to a device’s level of protection against elements like dust and water.

Look for an outdoor keypad with an IP65 rating, which means it’s protected against rain, snow, wind, and cleaning agents. Specifically, the ‘6’ in IP65 means the device is protected against dust, and the ‘5’ means it’s protected against low-pressure water (such as rain) from any angle. IP65-rated keypads are particularly durable and long-lasting.


woman using weatherproof outdoor keypad


Outdoor keypad usage

You can install outdoor keypads to control door or gate access at a variety of properties, from residential to commercial buildings.

You’ll most commonly find outdoor keypads used at:


Apartment keypads

Outdoor keypads are a great way to control access at apartments because they enable quick and seamless access into and throughout the building. Plus, they spare building staff the hassle of issuing physical keys or fobs to every resident.

Use cases for outdoor apartment keypads:

  • Parking lot or garage entrances
  • Outside amenities, such as a pool or dog park
  • Pedestrian entrances for gated apartment communities


Commercial keypads

Commercial buildings — especially offices and coworking spaces — can also enjoy the benefits of an outdoor keypad.

A commercial keypad entry system is perfect for back or side entrances that only tenants and staff use. For example, you could install an outdoor keypad at the door leading to the building’s courtyard that visitors can’t access. You can also use a keypad at the employee-only entrance to your building’s parking garage.


Gated community and HOA keypads

Beyond apartment and office building doors, outdoor keypads can also be used at gates. In fact, they serve as a great form of gate access control.

Keep in mind that an outdoor keypad gate lock might not be ideal for the main entrance to your gated community or HOA. This is because visitors will need access at the main entrance, and keypads don’t provide a way for visitors to contact or request access from tenants. However, a keypad is a great solution for resident-only gated entrances and amenities within the property, such as the gated community clubhouse or fitness center.


Types of outdoor keypads

Just like there are many types of gates and doors, there are several types of outdoor keypads.

Here are a few types of keypads you should be aware of:


Outdoor gate keypads

Keypads aren’t just for doors — they’re also great for gates. Whether you need to control access to your office building’s gated parking lot or your apartment’s gated pool, an outdoor keypad will serve you and your tenants well.

One of the greatest perks of a keypad entry system for gates is that it allows for quick access. If you install a keypad at an outdoor gate, residents simply have to enter a PIN code to gain entry. Since the process is quick, it will help reduce wait times at the gate.


gate keypad


Outdoor garage keypads

Keypad door entry systems are commonly used to control access to garage doors at single-family homes. But you can also use garage door outdoor keypads at multifamily and commercial properties.

Perhaps the most common use of an outdoor garage keypad is at an apartment or office building’s parking garage. But you can also install keypads at storage and other onsite facilities.


Wireless keypads

Keypads can be wired or wireless. A wired outdoor keypad has physical wiring that connects it to the door or gate opener. In contrast, a wireless outdoor keypad communicates wirelessly — such as via Bluetooth or WiFi — with the door release or lock. Keep in mind that wired keypad gate openers may be more reliable.


5 benefits of outdoor keypads

An outdoor keypad is a great access control solution for a variety of properties. Read on to see why it might be perfect for yours.

The top five benefits of an outdoor keypad are:

  1. No physical credentials. In contrast to key fob and key card systems, keypads don’t require users to have a physical credential. So, there’s no chance of tenants being locked out because they forgot their key or fob.
  2. No reliance on RFID technology. RFID is the technology that powers fob and key card systems. The downside with RFID is that if a device gets damaged or there are objects in the way, signals can be blocked, preventing seamless access.
  3. Minimal wiring. The best outdoor keypads only require a connection to the door or gate opener and a Power over Ethernet connection.
  4. Affordability. Outdoor keypads are an affordable access control system because they only require purchasing and installing one device. You won’t have to pay for physical credentials or worry about replacing lost or damaged ones.
  5. You may be able to open the door or gate with a cell phone. Some outdoor keypads come with a mobile app that residents can use to gain access with their smartphones.


Best outdoor keypad

If you’re ready to purchase an outdoor security keypad for your multifamily or commercial property, you’re probably wondering what the best keypad is.

The best outdoor keypads offer these three features:

  1. Mobile app. Choosing a keypad with a mobile app means your residents can open the door or gate with a PIN code and a smartphone for maximum convenience.
  2. A camera. For added security, choose an outdoor keypad with a camera. Camera-equipped keypads take a photo of every entry event, creating an audit trail for staff to review at any time.
  3. Integrations. The best outdoor keypads integrate with other access control systems and proptech solutions.


ButterflyMX keypad for outdoor entrances

Of all the outdoor keypads on the market, ButterflyMX offers the best one.

The ButterflyMX outdoor keypad is the perfect combination of secure yet convenient access control. Plus, it’s IP65 rated and capable of withstanding even the harshest weather conditions.


Watch how ButterflyMX works:


With the ButterflyMX keypad, you get:

  • A mobile app for residents to remotely open doors or gates and grant access to guests.
  • A cloud-based dashboard for property staff to manage access from anywhere.
  • An audit trail of time- and date-stamped photos of everyone who enters.
  • A device that’s easy and affordable to install.
  • An integrated access ecosystem when you pair the keypad with our outdoor intercom.


try the ButterflyMX outdoor keypad


Johanna Gruber

Based in Los Angeles, I enjoy learning and writing about the real estate industry, and exploring how proptech can help people live and work better.