If you own a home, at some point you’ll likely have to deal with door lock problems. Unfortunately, most people don’t call a mobile locksmith like AllSafe Lock & Key here in Reno to remedy the issue until it’s become a big enough problem that it’s affecting their home’s security and can no longer be ignored. In a series of upcoming posts, AllSafe Lock & Key is sharing four common door lock problems that you should address as soon as you notice them.
Loose Door Locks, Knobs & Handles
No matter what kind of lock your doors have, there are many moving components holding the lock body together. Every piece plays a part in keeping the lock working properly. If one or more components isn’t operating as it should, the lock is no longer functioning correctly.
How Does a Lock Loosen?
Over time, it’s not uncommon for door locks to become loose simply through everyday use, and that’s particularly the case with regularly-used exterior doors. In other instances, internal components like the set screw, fastener or spindle aren’t lining up as they should, which creates a loose lock or knob. Sometimes, internal screws simply become undone or broken over time. Whatever the reason, these loose locks, knobs and handles can often lead to lock-out scenarios, which is never ideal. In a worse-case scenario, they leave your home vulnerable to a break-in. Keep in mind that close to 60% of residential break-ins use forced entry, and loose door locks, knobs and handles make that a lot easier.
If you notice that the lock isn’t working correctly when you use it, you have a door lock issue that shouldn’t be ignored. AllSafe Lock & Key here in Reno is an experienced and reliable local mobile locksmith, and we’re happy to inspect your locks and offer recommendations for repair or replacement if it’s warranted. Contact us today, and we’ll schedule a convenient time to make a house call.
Misaligned Door Locks
This problem can actually refer to two issues at once – the misaligned lock itself, or a misaligned strike plate. That’s because they both have the same effect of door lock problems. Fortunately, both misaligned locks and strike plates are easy to detect. If your door is no longer opening or closing smoothly, or you’re having difficulty turning the lock, it’s a good time to call AllSafe Lock & Key for an inspection.
In a misaligned lock, specific elements of the locking mechanism aren’t lining up properly to facilitate the core function of the door. Usually, the latch or locking bolt isn’t in proper alignment with the strike plate, which is affixed to the door jamb.
Causes of Misaligned Door Locks
In most instances, improper installation is the culprit behind misaligned dead bolts and latches. Sometimes, warping doors or door frames can be at fault as well.
Unfortunately, this is the kind of dilemma that only gets worse with time. Misaligned door locks that aren’t fixed often lead to broken locks and doors. Every time you use the lock or latch, it’s being subjected to pressure from being forced into the strike plate in a way it’s not intended. Eventually, the damage will be enough that a replacement will be necessary.
DIY Locks and Doors
It may be possible to solve this common door lock problem yourself, assuming it’s the door itself that’s out of alignment. Take a look at the door hinges and tighten any screws that appear loose. If this brings your door back to its correct configuration and height, consider your problem solved. If that’s not the case, consider the strike plate. It should be properly lined up with the latch or bolt, which should sit flush within the strike plate.
If you prefer not attempting to re-position or saw down your strike plate, and you don’t want to fiddle with your door lock, we understand. Some things are best left in the hands of a professional. In Reno and Sparks, contact AllSafe Lock & Key for prompt, courteous, expert assistance with these door lock issues or any of your locksmith needs.
Another door lock problem we’re familiar with here at AllSafe Lock & Key in Reno are jammed locks and latches. Here’s what to know about this common door lock problem.
Why Do Locks Jam?
There are a few causes of locks that jam. One common culprit is a build-up of debris in the internal mechanism. A broken latch or bolt will also cause jamming. Consider a jammed lock, or one that turns stiffly or slowly, as a sign of trouble – and a warning of what’s to come. Not only are you compromising the security and safety of your home or business, you’re setting yourself up for problems down the road. A jammed lock is often the precursor to a broken key.
While a certified locksmith may be your best option, it’s not a bad idea to start with a visual inspection of your jammed lock. Cleaning the lock’s keyway with an appropriate lubricant may be all that’s needed. If you’re unsure how to clean your lock or what lubricant will work, AllSafe Lock & Key can help.
If the jammed lock is the result of a broken bolt or latch, repair or replacement will be necessary. Don’t try to bend the bolt back into place, which only serves to weaken your lock. If it’s truly beyond repair – and only a certified locksmith will be able to definitively answer that – you’ll need to replace it.
How to Fix Jammed Locks
Unfortunately, this isn’t a tutorial in fixing jammed locks. If you’re looking online for solutions to your jammed lock, our advice is not to ignore the problem. Bring in an expert, like AllSafe Lock and Key here in Reno, to assess the situation and offer recommendations and solutions. Your home’s security depends on it.
A fourth door lock problem we see here at AllSafe Lock & Key in Reno is turning lock cylinders. Here’s what to know about this common door lock problem.
Turning Lock Cylinders
A turning lock cylinder is a problem because it affects your ability to securely lock or even enter your door. Fortunately, it’s a relatively simple issue to diagnose. If you insert and turn your key, and the entire lock cylinder moves, the culprit is most likely a damaged or loose set screw. Accessing and tightening the screw usually resolves the issue.
While that sounds straightforward, it’s the kind of door lock problem that’s best left to a professional like AllSafe Lock & Key here in Reno. That’s because you’ll need to remove either the face plate or part of the lock to access the right screws. Disassembling your lock may be harder than it appears, and you could be left with a lock that’s partially assembled and no longer functioning.
If you’re noticing problems with the locks on your home or business, AllSafe Lock & Key can help. We’re a certified mobile locksmith here in Reno, and we’ll offer recommendations and suggestions to keep your home and business secure. Contact us today.