Should You Lock Your Bedroom Door At Night? (5 Reasons You Should, 1 Reason You Shouldn’t)

To close your bedroom door or not? That’s one of the questions we ask ourselves a bit often.

First off, if you are not used to leaving your bedroom door ajar every time you retire to bed, the first day of trying may feel not right for you.

What if someone or some sort of a weird creature creeps inside in the dead of the night and scares you up? There is no other time we tend to question things more than the nighttime.

Still, there are some of us who can’t sleep behind a closed door.

In fact, a survey showed that just 29 percent of Americans today regularly leave their bedroom doors open when sleeping.

However, there are a lot of genuine reasons why you would leave your bedroom door open when going to sleep.

One Reason To Leave The Door Open

You might actually prod yourself into believing one these reasons are justified even if you are scared as hell:

1. Sufficient circulation of air and temperature control

I’ve heard some folks say they often leave their bedside fan running over their heads just to give them continuous wafts of fresh air throughout the night.

There aren’t a lot of reliable medical sources or research papers recommending it, even as a remedy for some of the well known respiratory ailments, but hey, placebo has always been here.

The reason why some people do it, however (go check in online forums), is that leaving the fan running over your head, or leaving the bedroom door ajar, helps to bring in a stream of fresh air that helps in boosting the level of oxygen in your blood.

Oxygen flow through the door is always a great idea if your windows can’t be left open during the night, or your apartment is sandwiched between very closely packed buildings. So, leaving the door open sounds like a genuine reason to keep your lungs supplied with fresh air. But there are many other reasons why you’d rather close it.

5 Reasons Why You Should Sleep Behind A Locked Door

1. Countering fire hazards

This is probably the most convincing reason why you should leave your bedroom door open every night.

Please imagine this: you are in a deep sleep, you weren’t able to have a whole week, perhaps after two or three sleepless nights, and your electrical socket starts a fire for some unknown reasons.

If you didn’t leave the door open, you could get suffocated by the fumes or burnt alive. The time required to wake up and twist the key in your lock wouldn’t have been enough to help you slip out and save your life.

Open doors can actually slow down the spread of fire.

Remember that most doors are made from wood and most manufacturers rarely think of adding a fire retardant on them (probably because chances of fire outbreak in your bedroom are very small).

The Underwriter Laboratories Firefighter Safety Research Institute and a few other collaborators did research about it for ten years and found out that open doors can save your life during nighttime fire outbreaks.

Here is how it works:

Fires always have trouble spreading in and around compartmentalized spaces. A closed-door means your room is disconnected from the rest of the household – it is a closed compartment.

If the fire breaks out, there will be limited oxygen to support rapid combustion and extensive devastation.

But you would have woken up by the time the little oxygen nears depletion, thus giving you just enough time to spring to the door, open it, and escape.

So, the isolated confines of a locked bedroom prevent the fire from spreading to other rooms and deprives it of essential oxygen that is necessary to keep it raging.

The FSRI (UL Fire Research Safety Research Institute) also did similar research and the results were affirmative.

They did a demonstration  showing how to close a closed-door and save lives.

They set a small building on fire – one bedroom had its door closed while another had its door open. The results were eye-opening.

Once the fire was extinguished, it was evident that sleeping with a closed-door is one of the best things you can ever do to reduce the chances of getting killed in a fire outbreak. There has been a campaign encouraging people to close doors before sleeping just in case.

At the video’s end, the FSRI gives out three simple tips to reduce the likelihood of home fires.

  • Always have a clear escape plan ready in place
  • Have smoke alarms ready and in good working conditions at all times
  • Always close your door before you sleep

The worst that can happen in such a situation, however, is locking the door and somehow forgetting where you put your keys. Worse yet, if the materials smolder for some time before burning up, you could die from carbon monoxide poisoning before figuring out what’s happening.

Also, the time it takes you to leave the room as well as the location of the fire can make or break your escape plans. A typical well-spaced modern home allows you to escape from any room within under three minutes.

If the fire started close or on the door, you have two choices:

  1. escaping through the window or
  2. breaking through the burning door.

2. Temperature regulation

For you to have ample and comfortable sleep, the temperature of your bedroom should be in the region of 60 degrees Fahrenheit.

However, getting your room to cool down to such temperatures can be hard during summertime. You can make it even worse by trying to sleep behind a closed door as you would have trapped plenty of hot air in your room to even create a conducive sleeping condition.

Depending on your A/C system, you may find yourself incurring huge costs trying to cool your room with an open door to mitigate the situation.

On the flip side, leaving the door open means you are allowing the warm air to escape to the outside and allowing cool and cold air inside, thus helping in reducing temperature.

The same thing applies in the winter but in reverse. The winter is one of those moments when you need a warm room to sleep comfortably. Leaving the door open means you are allowing warm air to the outside and permitting cold air to flow in. In this case, you might end up incurring unnecessary heating costs when you would have simply closed the door.

Either way, leaving your door shut on your way to sleep lets you conserve energy and save you considerable money.

3. Feng Shui

Feng Shui is a Chinese way of arranging furniture and the rest of your living space to create a comfortable living environment.

One of the principles of Feng Shue is keeping positive energy (referred to as Chi) in a continuous flowing loop. Sleeping behind a closed door is a great way of trapping Chi when you badly need it.

This only makes sense if you are a firm believer of Feng Shui.

4. Keeping off the pets

Nighttime is a moment you would like to have enough uninterrupted sleep in your bedroom without a cat purring or snoring nearby.

Small dogs too have a tendency of sneaking in the bedroom and curling close to you. Much as you love your pets, sleeping time should be one of those moments you agree to keep a distance from each other, and one of the best ways of creating distance is shutting them out of your bedroom.

5. Safe sleeping

Honestly, there is that sense of security you get when you know you’re sleeping behind in a closed space. You can’t know who might get to wander into your bedroom if you left the door open.

With a sense of security, many people find it easier to fall asleep when they don’t have to worry about intruders creeping through the open door to stealing their electronics and stuff.


There are many reasons why you would leave your bedroom door ajar. Maybe you need a supply of fresh air while asleep or you want to stay alert and listen to activities taking place in the living room. The benefits of closing your bedroom door, however, outweigh the benefits of leaving it open.

For example, it only makes sense to leave close it during the winter so that you can trap the warm air and reduce the need of warming your room with your A/C system.

A closed-door gives you a sense of security. You don’t want to keep worrying about intruders marauding into your bedroom.

But one of the core reasons why you might desperately want to close your bedroom door is to keep your bothersome pets from interrupting your sleep.

The biggest reason why you should sleep behind a closed door is the risk of fire. Studies show that closed rooms supply the fire with less oxygen, preventing it from burning to a full extent.

If the fire is made from steel or any other incombustible material, the fire will less likely spread into your room from outside. Sometimes, closing or leaving your bedroom door open may have something to do with your styling and interior design rather than trying to avert something.