How do you avoid a broken lock and what can you do to fix locks that are already broken? See our guide as we look at fixing broken locks today.
A study showed that 25% of people leave their doors unlocked throughout the day. Meaning that there are 75% of people could get locked out of their homes due to a broken lock.
While it is always a good idea to keep your doors locked, this can lead to you having lock troubles.
As repeated use takes a toll on lock mechanisms.
If this happens to you, you will want to know how to fix a broken lock, and how to prevent your lock from breaking in the future.
Keep reading to find out how to maintain your locks and repair simple lock problems yourself.
Clean the Locking Mechanism
If you are having issues with your locks, the best thing to do is clean them. You should be doing this even if your locks are working fine as a preventative measure.
Over time, grime and dust can collect in the locking mechanisms and cause issues. Especially on where you live and how often the lock is being used.
Every time you use your lock, it may be becoming dirtier and dirtier. Something that can often lead to the lock not working as it should.
You should clean the locking mechanism a few times a year to keep it clean and cleared up. You can do this with pressurized air sprayers to help dislodge debris.
You should clean around the keyhole, the strike plate, the latch, and the deadbolt. It also doesn’t hurt to clean around the door hinges and the tracks and threshold.
Though you should avoid using harsh cleaning products. You also shouldn’t use liquid cleaners inside the lock as they may not be able to dry in these small areas.
Inspect the Door
Checking your door should be a normal part of your home maintenance. Doing this can help you to spot a broken door lock in time to get it fixed.
You should test out the lock to make sure it is working as it should. Does it stick? Is the key going into the keyhole without any issues?
You should also test the door to see how well it opens and closes. It should swing freely and not feel loose or too tight.
The door should not be misaligned or have hinges that are loose. If your door is not set up right, the lock may also start to suffer.
These are often very small issues that can be easily resolved before the lock actually breaks.
One great way to take care of your door lock is to lubricate it a few times a year. This can help by keeping everything functional and moving.
You should check your lock manufacturer’s manual to see what kind of lubricants can be safely used. Some locks are different and need specific lubricant, while others do need any.
You should use only well know and trusted brands of lubricants for the best results. Spray it into the keyhole and use your key to help move it around in the lock.
Pull the key in and out to help the lubricant disperse throughout the lock mechanism. Don’t lubricate locks too often, as this can lead to potential build-up.
Some lubricants may also attract dust and grime, clogging the lock-up. This is a preventative measure and usually won’t fix a broken lock once the damage is already done.
Align the Strike Plate
If your latch or deadbolt is having issues, you may have a strike plate problem. This is the small metal plate that is around the deadbolt or the latch.
If it becomes misaligned, it can start to prevent the door from closing or locking as it should. You can prevent this issue by checking the strike plate often.
Make sure it’s aligned and has not become loose. If it is loose, you can fix this by tightening the screws so that the metal plate sits where it’s supposed to go.
You may also need to clean up the surrounding area if your door is a wood door. As pieces of wood may begin to obstruct the door from locking and closing.
Update Your Keys
One great way to prevent lock issues is to replace your keys as necessary. And you should not duplicate your other replacement keys, you should only duplicate originals.
Duplicated keys have very small differences between them. They are still alike enough that they are usable, but these differences can wear down the lock itself.
So when you go to update your keys, you should only have the originals duplicated. Allowing you to get extra keys that are in new condition that won’t wear down the lock.
Be Mindful Of the Door
You should also be aware of how you use your door each day. It is much easier to change a few habits than to fix a broken lock that has stopped working.
Maybe you are slamming the door too roughly, or you jiggle the key in the lock without needing to. You may be shoving the key too hard into the lock.
There are several things that you may be doing that could take a toll on your locks. Being mindful and aware of these habits can help you to take better care of your locks.
This option is much more practical than having to replace a broken lock in the future.
How to Fix a Broke Lock
If you have a broken door lock, you may be wondering what to do about this. When this happens, it can be very stressful as you need to quickly repair the lock.
Because of this, it is a good idea to have some solutions on hand. So that you have an idea of what to do if your lock breaks or isn’t working.
This is quite common, and most people will have to fix a broken lock at some point. So it is a good idea to know what to do and to be prepared in case this happens.
Especially since having functioning locks is so important for the security of your home. So keep reading to find out some common solutions for locks that aren’t working.
Use Powdered Graphite
Your deadbolt or lock may be sticking, making it difficult to lock or unlock it. This is one of the most common issues that you may run into.
When this happens, there is often too much dryness or grime has built up. Creating sticking that makes your lock very unpredictable as to whether it will work or not.
To fix this, you can try using powdered graphite to stop[ the sticking. You could also use something like Teflon lube spray to help the lock to move smoother.
A problem like this can often be prevented by keeping your lock mechanisms clean.
Heat the Lock
If it is winter and you live in a very cold climate, you may have issues with your locks. A door lock can freeze, making it difficult to use it in cold weather.
If this happens, the solution is usually to warm the lock up so that it can start to work again. You can do this with warm towels, body heat, or by using a hair dryer.
You can also heat your key before inserting it into the lock. This is a simple problem that may be irritating but can be resolved quite easily.
Tighten the Locks
Lever-style door handles have a tendency to become loose. Affecting the lock as it also becomes loose and not as effective as it should be.
You can try to counteract this by tightening the locks on the door handles. You can do this to keep your locks in working condition through daily wear and tear.
This is also a good time to check the locks to see what condition they are in. If they have been loose for a while, they could sustain a great deal of wear and tear.
So it is always best to tighten loose locks as soon as possible as well as any other loose mechanisms.
Replace Your Key
If you are constantly having issues with your lock, it may not actually be the lock. The issue might very well be with the key that you are using, not the lock.
Like locks, keys can become worn out over time from using them day after day. Resulting in them becoming damaged or changing, making them less effective.
If this goes on, that key will eventually no longer work for that lock. So you should replace it if you notice the key not working as it should.
You can test this theory by using other keys to see if the lock works with them. You should always replace keys as soon as possible before they start to damage the lock.
Replace the Lock
If you have a broken lock, you may be wondering when to get a new door lock. No one wants to have to do this, but sometimes it is necessary.
Your lock may be damaged and no longer work, no matter what you do. It also may be old and worn down, needing a replacement as its lifespan has ended.
These are some common times when you will need to get a new door lock. As locks eventually wear out and do need to be replaced.
If you live in an older home, this is more common as the locks may be very outdated and worn. Or you may not know when the locks were first installed and how well cared for they are.
If you begin to notice the lock not working as it should, this could be a sign that it needs replacing. Especially if it is looking worn out and has been having issues for a while.
Check the Deadbolt
Your lock may not be working because the deadbolt has started having issues. This happens when the deadbolt has actually gotten stuck and won’t move.
If this happens, you should check the strike plate to make sure it’s aligned. The issue is usually that the plate is not where it should be and needs to be tightened in place.
If the area is damaged, this could be preventing the deadbolt from moving as it should. Sometimes, if severe enough, you may need to replace the deadbolt.
When to Hire a Locksmith
Fixing a broken lock may seem simple, but it can actually be quite complicated. Especially if the issue is severe, complicated, or not what it may seem to be.
Locksmiths will be able to find issues and solutions much easier. They are skilled in this area and will have the tools necessary to fix the issue.
They will also be far more likely to catch sneaky problems and fix them the right way. And if you need a new door lock, they will be able too to install it.
Though you may want to save some money by doing these repairs yourself, it may not always be cost-effective. Like if the issue is severe or you don’t even know what the problem is.
There are many times when calling a professional will save you money and stress. Especially if you
have no knowledge of locks or replacing them.
Reasons for a Broken Lock and How to Fix It
If you think that you have a broken lock, you may not know what to do from here. As this can be a tricky issue to figure out, let alone fix by yourself.
Do you need to hire a locksmith to repair or replace your broken lock? Contact us today at Round Rock Locksmith for lock changing and lock repair services.