Frozen Locks?

Posted by on Jan 22, 2016 in Locksmtih Info |

The low temperatures and winds during winter tend to freeze things, including door locks. The condensation inside the tumblers is actually what freezes, making it impossible to open door locks. If you wash your car at night, there is a high likelihood that the locks will be frozen in the morning. Thanks to the guys at, here’s what to do if your locks are frozen:

Keep trying

Before you think of trying anything else, insert the key into the lock and try to open it. If it does not work, repeat the procedure several times, with short intervals. The friction could heat the ice in the lock and melt it. Do not force the key as it could damage the lock, some mechanisms inside the cylinder, bend the key or even break it.

You can also lift the door handle for some time, activating a heated element around the door lock. The ice in the lock melts and you can open the door. This feature is likely to be found in older models. Check whether your model has this feature.

Try access via other doors

Frozen lock3You can try to access your car via other doors. If need be, use the rear hatch. When you get in, you need to start the engine and allow it to run for a few minutes. The car will heat up, warming the locks on all the doors.

Spray de-icer into the locks

You can use de-icer or a can of WD-40 to spray the locks. De-icer is easily available in hardware stores, gas stations, convenience stores, and automotive stores, especially during the winter months. When applying the de-icer, you need to get the dust cover out of the way. Do this by partly inserting the key into the lock. Go ahead and spray.

Heat the key

Frozen lock1You can use a box of matches or lighter to heat the key. To ensure that you do not damage the key fobs, which contain computer chips that are easily damaged, hold the key with an oven mitt or tongs. Wear thick gloves to avoid burning yourself, if you do not hold the key using tongs or an oven mitt. If the key is made of metal only, heat it while it is in the lock. If it has plastic, do not heat it while it is in the lock. The heated key should melt the ice and get the tumblers moving.

Do not heat the key until it is too hot. Heat it until it is warm to the touch, as some lock cylinders could have plastic parts that can get damaged by heat. You may have to heat the key over and over.

If you do not have any of these tools, press the key onto the car’s hot engine block. This should heat the key enough to melt the ice in the lock.

Heat the lock

You can also heat the lock. A hair dryer is ideal for this. If the car is far from electric sockets, you may need a very long extension cord. You can also use a portable hair dryer. Direct the air at the lock, blocking the wind with your body. Putting the key into the lock will also help to direct the heat.

Use petroleum jelly or Vaseline

Petroleum jelly or Vaseline should melt the ice in the lock. Dip the key into the Vaseline. Insert it into the lock and wiggle the key. If it does not work right away, repeat the procedure several times and wait for about 5 minutes. Do not force the key to turning. The last thing you need is a broken key in your lock.

Use straw or toilet paper tube

Place the tube over the lock and warm it using your breath. This simple technique provides some warmth that melts the ice in the lock.

The last option

If the car door is totally frozen, you may need to apply heat to the entire door to get it open.


One of the ways to melt the ice in the lock is via heating. Do not pour hot water over the lock. Doing this increases the amount of water in the lock, making the lock freeze even more in future. Moreover, since most cars have a lot of plastic parts and soft rubber parts, you can easily wreck the seals. There are also some hydraulics or electronics hanging out under the locks that could easily get damaged.

You now know what to do if your locks are frozen. The extent to which the locks are frozen will determine the options that will work and those that will not.

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Do Locksmiths Need Schooling?

Posted by on Jan 21, 2016 in Locksmtih Info |

Do Locksmiths Need Schooling? Well, locksmith tasks might appear to be independent of intellectual knowledge that is also the main reason locksmiths can be easily accessed locally. The truth is, unlike other technical professions, you don’t need certification to be a locksmith. You can achieve that easily by doing some locksmith tasks repeatedly. However, if you are looking to become a professional locksmith, you should be good at it. What you mustn’t forget is that being a locksmith requires you to spend lots of time on tools. You will be working with electrical appliances, safes, vaults, car locks and more. Don’t you think assembling and disassembling a door lock can be done faster with a person who doesn’t rely on guesswork?

Take it like this way, if a certified surgeon decides to take you in, risk teaching you some medical stuff, like dealing with minor surgeries and let you try it under his or her supervision. How many years do you think you need to be able to do it perfectly? You have eyes, brains that make you a human, meaning that you’ll probably learn something with time. The question is, does this make you a professional? Looking at the facts, even surgeons sometimes fail. The main reason they get away with it is because they are professionals. So, it can well be assumed that the surgeon tried his best and maybe the patient died because his or her time had come.What about someone without certification, killing a patient in the process. Don’t you think the hospital will be at a risk of being closed?

Acquiring locksmith knowledge practically is easier, but if you are targeting more clients, education deserves a shot, why? Simple, everyone perceives a certified professional to be better than a self-acclaimed professional with nothing to show for it but limited skills. To get a clear understanding what this means, here are some of the reasons education is worth a shot.


Unless you are just doing some locksmith tasks as a part time job or just looking to impress someone, having something to show for it is vital for your performance in the field. If it is a full-time job, your earnings will be fully dependent on how many clients accept your services. Having a certificate is important when you are looking to take your career to the next level. Some states will give you a certification for just practicing locksmith, but they won’t just give you this without doing some background check. You’ll be handed an exam to see if you qualified and this depends highly on how much you know about locksmith profession.

Certification will, without a doubt, establish your credibility. Take for example, if a stranger appears at your door claiming that he can fix your door lock without anything to show that he can do it. Don’t you think there are high chances he might be a bugler? If yes, then without any locksmith certification, appearing at someone’s door trying to market yourself as a locksmith without certification might not go well. On the other hand, if you have a license to show for it, they might consider you for an appointment. Education is also useful in acquiring more clients that will, in turn, increase your earnings.


locksmith trainingBeing a locksmith might look easy. Most of the things you’ll be doing might as well be considered Do It Yourself tasks that doesn’t need much knowledge. What you mustn’t forget is that technological advancement is changing things. Locks are becoming more complicated; most electrical appliances require some education in mathematics and physics and the worst part is, there more than enough devices you will come across that might not need your experience as a locksmith, but some basic knowledge that is only available in schools.


locksmith school1There are more than enough locksmith training programs out there that range from a certificate, diploma to degree. most of these programs will equip you with some knowledge on how to efficiently operate locks as well as keys. You’ll get some knowledge on how to install locks, operate safes and lastly, deal with deadbolts. Just like what you’ll learn from a professional locksmith, you will know how to cut, make some copy and fit keys.

What makes learning from an institution better than acquiring the knowledge while working with a professional, is that education will expose you to some theories to enhance your reasoning. Better thinking will help you figure out dealing with something you’ve never come across, like the new car locks designed to manage effectively a car theft. There are more than enough skills you can acquire from education that will make you a better locksmith. Here are some of the topics taught in schools.


* locking mechanisms

* Vaults and safes

* Vital tools for a locksmith

* Business practices for a locksmith

* Assembly and disassembly of door locks

* Security systems

* Car locks and bank lock devices and many more.

In summary, education makes you a better locksmith for some obvious reasons. If you want it as a profession, there is nothing that will do you good than winning your targeted customer’s trusts. You also don’t want mess with authorities. Education will move you from being self-acclaimed locksmith whose success depends on client’s sympathy to a professional whose services are highly demanded. So, do Locksmiths Need Schooling? Well, it depends on why you do it. If it is just a hobby, then some practical will just be enough, but if you are looking to make a living out of it, education will undoubtfully do you some good.

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How Does A Door Lock Actually Work?

Posted by on Nov 12, 2015 in Locksmtih Info |

There are different types of door locks that are designed for a specific door. Each door will have its own mechanism. That means that they will work differently, based on the mechanism. So how does a door lock work? The mechanism will be determined by the specific type of lock. Here are the common types of locks and how they work;
Phoenix Locksmith Pros In Phoenix Arizona

• The Pin & Tumbler Lock

pin tumbler lockThis is the most common door lock that has several pins that are loaded with springs. They are then loaded into a set of tiny cylinders. Every cylinder will have a bottom part that is called a pin, along with a top part that is called the driver. Once you insert the key, each spring will be compressed while the key raises the pin and pushing the driver into the top section of the cylinder.

If you insert the correct key in the lock, the top and bottom pins will align the shear line. This is a space between the top and bottom pins that is around the track. Once each pin and driver are aligned to create a way for the shear line, then the key will turn.

When the key is not inserted into the lock, then the pins should be at rest inside the chambers. The bottom pin should be in the key chamber. On the other hand, the top pin section should rest on top of the bottom half of the key chamber. This will help to reduce the pressure on the springs.

If the wrong key is inserted, it will misalign one or more cylinders that have the locking springs. This will block the key from turning. This is why an incorrect key cannot open a lock that has a specified key.

• Side-locking Bar Lock

side locking bar lockThis is a strong type of lock that uses a high-technology and it is used in most buildings recently. It is used as an enhancement of the regular pin and tumbler lock. The side-locking bar has been designed to prevent lock bumping, a new way of breaking in. This system uses the side locking technology that allows the lock system to be accessed with ease and more securely. The cylinders of this lock system will have two steel balls that are inserted over the key face to offer an enhanced drill resistance.

• Tubular Locks

These locks are also common, and they are mostly installed on the interior doors. They will be used for bathrooms, bedrooms, passages, closets, among others. They also come with the tumbler lock on the knob that is on the outer side of the door. It can also have a turn or push button on the inside of the door.

• Mortise Locks

This type of lock requires the mortise or a pocket that is cut into the door, where the lock will be installed. They come in two different types of devices; the deadbolt and the latch bolt locks.

• Rim locks

The rim lock is a locking device, which is linked to the door surface. It will mostly be attached on the inside surface of the door. It entails a tiny latch that will be used to unlock the door from the inside. There will be a smaller rim that has a keyhole on the outside, probably or the sake of security.

• Electronic Locks

Electronic locksThe electric locks will be controlled by an electric current. They are mostly stand-alone locks that have an electronic control system that is installed to the lock. Here, you will be needed to insert a combination code or a specified key to open up the lock system. If the combination is correct, the lock will be automatically be opened and you can access the building or safe.

• Mechanical locks

The mechanical lock will function with one or more metal pieces. The metal pieces include levers, latches, and tumblers. They will fall into a slot that is inside the bolt. This is meant to prevent the lock from being moved. Usually, most of the mechanical locks will need a specified key to unlock them. With the correct key serration, the metal pieces will be raised to let the bolt slide and unlock the door.

Knowing how a lock works is vital since you can understand when and if there is an issue with the lock system. Contact a locksmith to know the right lock system to install on your door.

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