Door Lock Repair Basics
If your door lock is rusted or broken, there are a number of ways to get it back to its former glory. These methods include rekeying an old lock, replacing a broken latch spring, and restoring colonial-style locks. But before you tackle any of these tasks, you should know some basic information about locks.
Rekeying an old lock
If you’ve lost a key and want to replace it, rekeying an old lock may be the best solution. Rekeying locks involves adjusting the inner workings of the lock so that a new key can open it. This can be done by replacing key pins and tumblers. In a typical lock, each series of pins corresponds to a specific key. A rekeying procedure is usually much cheaper than replacing a lock entirely.
First, you’ll need to disassemble the lock. The new key must fit into the grooves in the lock’s pins. The new key will have a slightly different shape, so you’ll have to replace the old pins with new ones. This is ideal for homeowners who’d like to use only one key to open all locks, as it will cut down on key ring clutter and save time searching for keys.
Replacing a broken latch spring
To replace the broken latch spring, begin by removing the cover on your door lock. Once you have removed the cover, examine the latch mechanism carefully. If the latch pin or hook doesn’t fit, it is likely the spring is broken. If you can’t locate the spring, it is possible to force it into position by pressing on the pin or latch body. You can then check the spring to determine whether it is broken or worn.
Once you’ve removed the lock’s front plate, turn the latch bolt with a screwdriver. You can have someone else hold the door handle while you rotate the latch bolt. Once the latch bolt is positioned correctly, pull on the handle and check if it opens. If it doesn’t, take it to a locksmith for assistance.
Repairing rust on an old lock
Old padlocks can be frustrating to work on, and rust can cause the spring to seize. Rust can also corrode the keyhole, making it difficult to open. In addition, older locks often do not deal well with moisture, which can cause the internal mechanisms to seize and prevent you from releasing the shackle. To fix the problem, use medium-grit sandpaper to remove the rust.
If you’re unable to do this yourself, you can contact an antique lock repair professional to help you. They can restore a vintage lock to its original appearance. For a more thorough job, start by cleaning the exterior of the lock. This will save you about 40 percent of the time you would spend repairing rust.
Restoring colonial-style locks
Restoring colonial-style locks may be a simple weekend project, but the task requires skill and a bit of knowledge. The process involves disassembling the lock, cleaning the components, and making small repairs. A quality restoration may be indistinguishable from the original, causing an ethical dilemma. Apple Valley Locksmith
Installing a new lockset
The first step in replacing an old lockset is to measure the existing holes in the door. The backset is usually two 3/8 inches for an interior door and two 3/4 inches for an exterior door. The knob’s height should be at least three inches higher than the backset. Then, wrap a piece of cardboard around the edge of the door, aligning the centerline with the line you drew in Step 2. Then, insert an awl or nail into the center of the template’s edge bore.
Installing a new lockset is relatively easy. Locksets that were made in the last 20 years are usually easy to replace and require only a screwdriver to remove. The two most common residential entry locksets are the cylindrical and tubular. Both are easy to install and will match the existing keys. Choosing the right lockset can be tricky, so a locksmith is recommended.