Most common lock problems

26-11-2010

Before you call a lockmsith...

Alot of times I get called out to repair a lock they say "sticks". A sticking lock can be alot of things but there are a few things you can do first to save yourself money and embarrassment.

1) Lube it!  Even a well keyed lock will stick if it dries out. I like to use a teflon or silicone based lubricant, but WD-40 works as well, especially in the winter as it displaces moisture and prevents freezing. If it is a deadbolt style simply shoot a little (doesn't take much) into the keyhole(s) and with the bolt extended shoot more into the edge of the door where the bolt comes out. Then exercise it with the key a few times. This works wonders. Same thing with a doorknob style but retract the latch before lubing.

2) Check all keys that you have had duplicated. Chances are that the keys that work the worst are from a hardware store or home improvement center. They are not locksmiths and the duplicating machines they use are most likely worn and are out of calibration. It takes only 5/10,000 of an inch for a poorly working key to stop altogether. If you have lubed it and found a good working key-problem solved. Take the good key to a qualified lockshop to duplicate. Destroy the rest. Don't throw them in the trash, never know who's digging in there.

3) If the lock only sticks with the door in the closed position but not when its open shows an alignment problem. The door jamb has settled a bit and binding in the bolt or latch. Try to tighten the door hinge screws and maybe lift the door slightly when its closed while locking to see if its better. Enlarging the hole in the strike a bit should fix it.

If none of this seems to work, call Pickers Locksmith Service for fast and affordable service. Hope this helps!