Do you have a lock that likes to stick on cold, wet winter days? Or maybe your front door knob jiggles so loosely that you’re not sure the lock is even doing any good. (Hint: it’s not). As locksmiths, we’ve seen it all. There are some lock issues that are more common than others. For those of us who are trained in the art of things like rekeying and lock repair, these common lock concerns are generally easy to handle. If you don’t have our training, though, they can be a major nuisance — and a security hazard! 

Here at Firstline Locksmith, we are licensed, insured, and bonded, plus we have more than 30 years of experience serving Newark and the rest of New Jersey. Whether you need help improving security measures for your business, or you need lock repair for your home, our local locksmith team is here to help! Here are some of the most common lock problems and what you can do about them: 

 

The Lock Turns Slowly

This is a prevalent problem in older locks, in particular. The underlying reason is that years of dirt and grime have probably built up within the inner locking mechanism. More humid climates like we get here in New Jersey can make that build-up worse. In some cases, you can carefully insert a cotton swab into the lock to attract dirt. If that doesn’t work, you will likely need to clean and/or lubricate the lock. Be sure you’re using a lubricant made for locks, or you could gum up the mechanism more! If you’re not sure what to do, or you think your locks need to be serviced by a professional, your local locksmith can easily come out and clear away all that internal gunk. 

 

The Lock Won’t Turn

When a lock doesn’t want to turn, most people’s first instinct is to try to lift the door a bit or otherwise shift it to get the key to turn and the lock to latch. In some cases, if the lock is stuck because the door and door frame don’t match up well, that may temporarily solve the problem. However, it’s important you don’t force the lock. You may end up with a broken key instead of a turning lock! As with the above issue, a bit of lubrication may help. However, if alignment is the issue, you’ll want to have a locksmith come out to rehang your door, adjust the lock, or whatever else is necessary to ensure your door and lock both work together properly. 

 

The Lock is Loose

This can happen after years of use, when daily turns slowly wear away the mechanisms inside the lock. Locks can also feel loose and wiggly if the door frame shifts with foundation settling or other, similar long-term causes. If your lock feels loose, it’s going to be much easier for a burglar to force the door open, so that lock should be adjusted as soon as possible for the security of your home or business. The lock may simply need to be adjusted slightly, or your door might need to be re-hung to fix the alignment, which you may be able to do yourself if you’re handy. However, the problem could also be with the lock’s internal mechanism, in which case you’ll need your local locksmith to come take a look. 

The Key Won’t Go In

Assuming you’ve checked and you know you have the right key — and hey, accidents happen! — there are a few reasons your key won’t insert into the lock, either partially or fully. The underlying reason may be that the internal lock mechanism has gotten gunked up with something, and the way is blocked. In some instances, the key itself may be damaged, which can affect whether it will turn the lock, not just whether it’ll go in. In addition, if the pins inside the tumbler are damaged, the key may not be able to go in, or it may not turn even if it does slide in. If the lock is dirty, you may be able to clean/lubricate it, but the other issues will likely all require the help of your local locksmith. 

If your locks are giving you trouble, whether it’s a lock on your Newark business or your home, the Firstline Locksmith team can help. Call today to schedule service across New Jersey!