Signs of a damaged lock mechanism and when to swap it out

Signs of a damaged lock mechanism and when to swap it out

Key Locks
Your homes security is the most important aspect when it comes to that feeling safety and comfort in your own home and protecting your prized possessions. This is the main reason many home locksmiths recommend modern, high security locks. The demand is high when it comes to double cylinder locks or even electronic locks.

Although a lot of people decide to buy high security locks, they usually fit and forget, they rarely pay attention to inspecting them from time to time. As a consequence, they risk the security of their homes. Locks do have a limited life span. A door lock can deteriorate due to environmental conditions as well as forced attempts to gain access to the house, which in turn make lock repairs a must.

Let us take a look at some of the signs of a broken door lock and what measures to take if you notice them.


Slow Front Door Locks
If you notice that your front door locks are still responding, but function slowly, or the key turns inside the lock with delay, it may be a sign of a burglar attempt. Most burglars use brute force to try to enter the house. They will either drill, kick, or bash in a lock and simply gain access to your house.

However, another category uses the vulnerability method. That is, they simply make the door lock weaker in time. They use tools or objects to deteriorate the lock without leaving any traces. You may think your lock is old and simply postpone calling a locksmith in for lock replacement because the door lock is still working. It is still adviseable to call in someone to take a look at your locks and they may suggest a lock replacement if they cannot perform a lock repair.


Intermittent Functionality of Door Latch
Another sign of a potential broken lock is the intermittent functionality of the door latch. This translated into improper locking or misalignment of the door latch. While the door can close from time to time, it leaves the opportunity for a burglar to get inside the house faster.

If you notice the door latch is not properly aligned and it doesn’t click into position, you need to tighten the screws and adjust the strike plate. You have to loosen the screws of the strike plate until it shifts. If you suspect this operation is not enough and notice the door lock is not properly functioning, you can call a nearby locksmith to adjust the latch. Door maintenance is really quite a simple task if you know what to look for, it may be more suitable to ask a professional to call and take a quick look.


Loose Door Knob is a Risk Factor for Break-ins
Although door knobs are not recommended to be used for front door locks, some people that live in open space, feel this is a sufficient safety measure and use them as front door locks. This is the case of large residential areas.

Most door lock parts become looser with time, it’s simply the constant use. And while a loose handle might not seem so bad, for a UPVC or Composite door especially it’s a sign that before too long the mechanism that keeps the handle horizontal to the door may fail and cause the entire locking mechanism to jam. You won’t be able to lock your door, or it jams when the door is locked and you won’t be able to get in or out.

In time, any type of door knob loosens due to cold or heat. This is a normal process. But it can be detectable later when the house has been broken into. As in any door lock’s case, you need to inspect your door knob on a regular basis to make sure you can tighten it and repair when necessary.

You can try to completely loosen the setscrew on the knob and then turn the knob clockwise so it fits properly. At the end of the operation, the knob should work properly. However, you may also need to replace the entire lock-set. The other option here, again, is to call in someone who specialises in door maintenance and lock replacement. If you tell then why you are asking them to visit, they may also have the required spare parts with them.


Key Constantly Turns into The Lock
If your key is constantly turning into the lock, it may be so because of initial lock installation. If some of the lock’s components are not properly adjusted, the key will constantly turn inside the lock. While it is annoying to lock your door with this problem, and while the lock may eventually engage and secure the door, it is also dangerous because the lock can be accessed by burglars. Another reason for your key constantly turning into the lock is a broken cam. If this has happened you need perform a lock replacement. It is better to avoid the do it yourself approach in this case. Call a locksmith to check the door locks and install locks if locked outside home. The worst case here is that you cannot leave your home because you cannot secure the door.


The Weather
Nothing you can do about the weather but the weather can certainly do things to your external doors. For wooden and especially uPVC doors, hot weather and direct sunlight will often cause a door to expand making it harder to lock, open or close without applying force. You might only need to wait until cooler weather arrives, especially in the Preston and Blackpool areas, for the door to return to normal, but if you have inadvertently damaged the lock, or knocked the mechanism out of alignment, this is the time to call someone in to check out the alignments and perform any door repairs, or lock repairs, that may be required.

Key is that is hard to turn into security door locks
Another sign of a broken door lock or a vulnerable door lock is the key that is hard to turn inside the security door locks. This is usually the first sign of an attempted break-in. Most burglars use force or the picking method. This is probably the most important warning sign you should take into consideration.

Even security door locks are vulnerable to break ins. This is why you should call a locksmith and ask him to help you, they may suggest a solution to your problem.


There is never any downside to replacing the locks on your door, unless you, or a supposed specialist, replace them with locks that are worse. The locks on your doors are an integral part of your home security, and better security helps your property stand out from others. There are many other reasons that might prompt you to change your locks, however, these pointers may not be a complete list of items but hopefully, this list will help you make the right choices when it comes to their locks and also helps you stay vigilant when it comes to the state of your home security.

If you’re interested in replacing your locks for your home, take a look at our Lock Repair packages. Alternatively, just take a look at our other services for more!

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