Determining When It Is Appropriate to Change Your Locks

Many of the homeowners we serve ask us when they should have their locks changed. There are all sorts of reasons to change the locks of your home. Let us start by telling you that this is something that should be a part of your routine maintenance program. If your safety and security is important, we are certain you won’t mind adding one more thing to your list of household responsibilities. If you have a family, this is all the more reason to make sure you evaluate your locks and have them changed annually. Keeping you and your loved ones safe is of high importance to everyone at Avondale Locksmith Stars in Avondale, AZ. We have included a couple of additional reasons for changing the locks of your home.

  1. Moving Out

If you have someone living with you, such as, a roommate or border, it is important that you change your locks after they have moved out. No matter how much you trust them, you never know who may have had the opportunity to get their hands on their keys and duplicate them. Don’t take any chances; change the locks. You can never be too safe when it comes to safety and security.

      2. If An Attempted Break-in

When you think that someone has tried to break into your home, this is undoubtedly a good reason to have the locks changed. Although they didn’t succeed in gaining access, it doesn’t mean that they may not try again at a later date. Now that the lock has been weakened, they just might succeed the second time around. In some cases, an intruder may try to gain access into your home through your garage. If your garage door lock looks as though it has been tampered with, it is also a good idea to have the lock changed also. Don’t waste time overthinking the situation. Contact a local locksmith to change your locks today.

    3. Worn Out Locks

Any time you have locks that are dated and worn out, you should have the locks changed. Locks that are worn can be broken more easily. In addition to the locks being weakened, they may no longer work the way they are intended to. This would also leave you susceptible to a home intrusion. Contact Avondale Locksmith Stars when you have locks that look worn no matter if the locks are on your windows or doors. We don’t care how old the locks are, we are happy to change the locks for you.

    4. Old Locks

Some homes that we serve have the same locks that were installed when the house was built. In some cases this could be more than 50 or 60 years ago. These old locks might begin to show signs of how old they are by becoming ineffective when you try to use them. This is a problem within itself. Locks that are old are easier to compromise since burglars are more skilled at what they do. Your old locks will not be a problem for a career criminal who has the skills to break a variety of current locks. Don’t make it easy for a burglar to get inside your home. Have any old locks that you may have, changed as soon as possible.

    5. Whenever You Move

This is something that you might not think we should have to mention but you might be surprised to know just how many people do not have locks changed before moving into a new home. While this is supposed to be done prior to your moving in, it is up to you to make sure that the job has actually been carried out. Besides, it is your safety and security at stake, not that of the contractor who’s job it is to change the locks. Don’t take unnecessary chances by moving into a home that has not had the locks changed. This includes windows and doors.

    6. Keys That Have Been Lost or Stolen

Anytime you lose your keys or they have been stolen, immediately change the locks. You never know who’s hands your keys may have ended up in. While you may assume that you have simply lost your keys, they may have actually been stolen. In this case, it would best to change the locks just to be on the safe side. If the keys are stolen, they may undoubtedly know exactly where you live. This is not a chance that anyone should take. Call a locksmith the moment your keys go missing to have them change your locks.

    7. Any Time You Had Your Keys Over

When you are unable to be at home during a service call, it might be necessary to hand your keys over to a service provider. Any time your keys are out of your possession, you risk someone duplicating them. Even if the specific person the keys are handed to doesn’t make a duplicate copy, someone else could do this. That is why it is a good idea to change the locks as soon as possible. Avoid anyone coming into your home uninvited.

    8. Someone Has Tried to Break-in

When you arrive home only to see that someone has tried to break into your home, don’t hesitate to contact a professional locksmith to change your lock. Not only should the locksmith change the lock in question, they should also evaluate the other locks of your home to see if the intruder has attempted to break-in through another access point. If they discover that there has been an attempt, these locks should also be changed. The locks are likely weaker and now easier to compromise. Don’t allow someone to come back to finish the job. Have the locks changed as quickly as possible.

The more proactive you are the better chance you have of avoiding an intrusion. As we always say, ‘It is better to be safe than sorry’. Do yourself a favor and have your locks changed whenever your locks look tampered with.

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Rekey or replace locks?

That’s the question; should you rekey or fully replace the lock? What’s really the difference? Is one more expensive than the other? What are the advantages or disadvantages of either? Keep reading as Avondale Locksmith Stars will “spell out” the differences and make it all crystal clear for you. Soon you’ll be able to confidently tell which service you want or need. This will allow you to save money and enjoy additional peace of mind, as well.

door-lock-replacement

Rekey service

You’ve often heard the term “change the locks” and you kind of knew what that meant. It means making it so that the old keys no longer work on the lock. That’s actually true. In a rekey job, the original lock stays put. It stays in place and only the insides of it are altered. This makes the “old” keys useless. When a fresh start is needed, rekey service is great to have! Think back to when you leased or bought your home. You were handed a key at closing. Who gave you that key and where did they get it? Who else had access (or a copy) of that key?

In actuality, many people did! Not only the builder, but a bevy of other people did. Included in this list are plumbers, realtors, property managers, dry wall installers, electricians, painters, landscapers, roofers, HVAC techs, alarm installers and dozens more. You yourself have keys and so do your family members, roommates, guests and possibly neighbors, close friends, babysitters, dog walker, gardener and many others!  Rekeys allow a fresh start to key control. The locks stay the same; the keys are all brand new and all old ones no longer work!

Lock replacement

If rekeying is so good, why replace your locks at all? Actually, there are very good reasons to do exactly that. If your locks are aged or worn, rekeying is NOT recommended. Also, if your locks are damaged or need updating then rekeys are not in your best interest. Let’s say you come home from vacation and discover that your home or car has been broken into. After getting over the initial shock you discover that your locks were damaged in the process. You’ll need them replaced, of course. In fact, if you are going to get any sleep at all tonight, or go to work tomorrow, you’ll need them replaced immediately!

Let’s say for example that your locks are just fine and NOT damaged. Why would you want to replace them? For security reasons and added peace of mind you might consider upgrading your locks. Most Avondale, AZ full service locksmith shops offer higher grade locks that offer protection against lock bumping, lock picking and other illegal and dangerous practices that lead to unwanted intruders entering your property. Bump proof locks and high security locks virtually eliminate intruders and if you shop carefully you can get them purchased and installed at affordable rates and with full warranty coverage.

What is lock bumping?

Lock bumping happens not only here in Avondale, AZ but all over the world. It is a little known method that uses a lock bumping tool that is easy to make or purchase online. The tool/key is inserted in the lock and then gently tapped a few times loosening the interior pins and scrambling them so that the lock is opened in mere second!

It is estimated that 90% of builder installed door locks can be bumped open and that is now spreading to auto locks and commercial locks, as well! Not only does lock bumping make getting into your property easy, it leaves NO sign of forced entry! This makes filing an insurance claim or police report very difficult as there is no evidence to back you up. You’d think that selling this tool or the instructions on how to lock bump would be illegal but just the opposite is true. There are lock bumping “how to” videos all over the internet and the lock bumping key/tool can be bought on auction sites like EBay and on Craigslist worldwide.

High security locks

Better lock brands like Baldwin and Medeco make locks that are deemed high security. Unlike more mainstream locks that are hollow and made of tin, high security locks are made of solid brass and covered with a steel plate. They also have hardened steel pins embedded in the lock’s face to protect it against lock drilling. These specialized locks simply cannot be picked open, pried open or even shot open! While you may not NEED them, you can sleep better at night knowing that absolutely no one is going to get past these locks! Best of all, the prices for these locks are reasonable and affordable so be sure to check with Avondale Locksmith Stars or your favorite full service lock and key shop for free price quotes and for additional information.

Master pin dangers

Most all new home developments over the past couple of decades have used door locks that were mastered at one time. The locks were ordered in bulk and all could be opened with one key – the master key. This makes the construction process more streamlined as the work crews can get in and out of each home as needed to work on drywall, paint, install appliances, do electrical work, plumb, add kitchens, tile bathrooms, etc. The master pins inside each lock allow this process to take place. When the home is sold, the first time the new owner’s key is used, the lock reverts to non-master status, and the key is now exclusive to its new buyer.

So what’s the problem? Those master pins are still inside the lock and every one of them reduces the security of the lock while making the probability of lock failure greater with use. Master pins still in the lock also make it easier to pick open or bump as described above. What’s the solution? You guessed it; a rekey! A rekey with a specific request for master pin removal will make your lock safe again and get you brand new keys to boot!

HOW BEST TO MAINTAIN YOUR LOCKS

Most of the time we don’t give our locks and keys a second thought, but the fact is ~ whether residential, automotive, or commercial ~ they play a major part in our personal and business lives, day in and day out. There will be times when an emergency arises, whether it’s a lockout emergency or something more complicated ~ at your home, with your car, or at your place of business. It can certainly be infuriating, but you don’t have to let it stress you out. There are many good ways to keep yourself secure. It’s important to keep your locks well maintained so you can prevent most of the issues that could arise when it comes to locks and keys.

door-lock-repair

Preventive maintenance will help you avoid future lockouts. If you make the effort to maintain your locks, you might never need to call a locksmith. Watch for:

  • wear & tear
  • difficulty turning the key in the lock mechanism
  • rust
  • trouble sticking your key in the lock mechanism

Should you encounter any of these problems, it’s often best to change your locks, because worn-out locks usually get stuck or break, meaning it’s more likely you’ll get locked out. Old and failing locks also make you more vulnerable to robbery.

Take extra security measures. Depending upon your living situation, if you’re feeling at risk at your home or at your commercial property, there are numerous ways to give yourself peace of mind.

Lengthen the life of your locks.

  • General lubrication. At least twice a year, or anytime you observe excess grinding or friction in the lock mechanism, apply a silicone-based lubricant spray to the keyhole.
  • If the key won’t turn, don’t fret. Sometimes the pins jam up. Spray the lock mechanism with WD-40 or silicone spray, and this will typically solve the problem.
  • Periodically replace your keys. Keys take a lot of abuse. We use them day and night, many times per day, we store them who knows where, and we throw them anywhere. So if you notice your keys are beginning to wear down, or if your key is bent or otherwise damaged, then make a new key. Throw out any old keys or take them to a recycling center.

Additional ways to feel more secure and safe:

  • keypad systems
  • safes for home & business
  • magnetic locks
  • choose a local, dependable professional locksmith who’s bonded, licensed, insured, certified, and background-checked.
  • keyless remote entries
  • use only reputable top-quality brand locks, at least a grade 2
  • combination locks
  • alarm systems

Most professional locksmiths recommend deadbolts. Deadbolts are a very effective way to augment your security and safety. Make sure your deadbolts are installed correctly. A deadbolt should have at least a one-inch throw. On the strike side, there must be a security plate with screws at least three inches long, going all the way into the wood frame of the door. If you have a window nearby, or glass as part of your door, a thumbturn deadbolt won’t be totally secure, since an intruder could break the glass, reach a hand in, and turn. To stop this from happening, install a double-cylinder type of deadbolt lock, because it requires a key on the inside to open.

When should you change your locks?

  • Lost keys. If you really know you’ve lost your keys, then it’s time to change your locks. You don’t want to risk the possibility of a stranger gaining access to your property.
  • A new home. When you move into a new place, change the locks immediately. You never know, there might be former residents out there who still have their old keys.
  • New roommates or tenants. The same rules that apply to your home apply to your rentals. If you rent out space in your house or your apartment, then replace your locks every time you change tenants. Even if the previous occupants turned in their keys, you can’t be sure that there aren’t still extra spare keys floating around.
  • After a robbery. If there’s been a break-in, replace all exterior locks. Also replace any interior locks in order of your personal security priorities.

Do you have a stuck or broken key? Haste makes waste. If you rush with your key, you may find yourself in a tight spot, because your key could break off in the lock mechanism! If you take an extra few seconds to be patient with your key, you’ll save yourself a lot of grief.

If you are unlucky enough to have your key break inside the lock before you shut the door, then you won’t be able to lock it, which of course leaves your place susceptible to theft. If you break the key off in the lock after you’ve closed the door, then you likely won’t be able to open the door again. A broken key can cause damage to a lock.

Is part of the key stuck in the lock? If there’s a tiny amount of the key sticking out, you may be able to get it out by yourself. If there’s enough of the key showing, you might be able to pull it out with your fingers or with needle-nose pliers. You’re risking doing damage, but if you decide that it’s worth a try, use a flathead screwdriver ~ one that’s small enough to fit inside the keyhole. Pry the key inside, to the point where it slightly comes out of the lock. If there’s any lock damage, call a professional locksmith.

Yes indeed, there will still be instances when you really will have to hire a professional locksmith. If you’re located any place in Avondale, Arizona, then you ought to call a legitimate locksmith company, such as Avondale Locksmith Stars, which is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The staff mobile locksmith technicians there are perpetually prepared to get you out of trouble.

Avondale Locksmith Stars: Importance of Security for Commercial Property

Security is important for both residential and commercial property alike. However, according to Avondale Locksmith Stars, when it comes to commercial property, the lack of proper security measures is a recipe for disaster. Why? Because offices, stores, retail locations and storage spaces are targets favored by thieves and burglars. They know that they will surely find something of value inside the property. Also, most people know that they won’t usually encounter a guard – like would likely happen if they were trying to get into a home. Without fear of being caught in the act by an armed homeowner, criminals are free to pick the locks and disable all other light security systems. However, if you employ some good security systems in your location – preferably redundant ones – then burglars and thieves don’t stand much of a chance.

Home-Secure

Nowadays, there are security systems that automatically detect when they are disabled or when their power is cut. Other systems automatically call 911 or a specialized security company in case they detect an intrusion. It’s very hard – if not impossible – to disable these systems without alarming someone. Also, there are locks and reinforced doors that can withstand a lot of pressure without giving way. In most cases, thieves and burglars are afraid to make too much noise as to not attract unwanted attention to themselves. This is why they will often no be able to break through resilient locks and reinforced doors.

And thieves and burglars are not the only people you should be afraid of. Did you know that industrial espionage really exists? Other companies are more than happy to get their hands on your work for almost free. There have been cases where “spies” have infiltrated office spaces and copied data without leaving a trace. They don’t steal physical objects and don’t destroy your money counters. However, they are just as dangerous as burglars. Your ideas can be worth millions; and you stand a good chance of losing them to one of these spies.

Today, electronic security systems are more and more intelligent. Not only do they function on secondary power sources, they also alert people around and the police if somebody tries to cut their power. Also, any movement inside your property causes these alarm systems to perform various tasks from sounding a siren to calling the cops silently. Some systems even detect when the door is being forced or if the wrong code is being used.

Securing the Lives of Your Employees

Security systems should not only be designed to keep burglars, vandals and industrial spies away. They should be designed in such a way that they are able to assist people in need of help. Your employees can have access to a panic button that automatically engages the security system, locks the doors, sounds alarms and calls the police. Also, a good security system makes it easy for people to escape the property in case of a fire or a terrorist threat. Bottom line, it is very important to install and maintain a security system that both keeps bad people away from your property and personnel, and also makes it easy for people inside the building to exit in case of emergency.

Without proper planning, no security system will be complete. It will not be able to stop some kinds of attacks. People in Avondale, Arizona are pretty inventive. In fact, burglars and thieves everywhere constantly find new ways of breaking into commercial properties. Here at Avondale Locksmith Stars, we’ve seen a lot of attempted break-ins and the methods used in some of them were just short of insane. A versatile security system can counter new threats with ease. However, you should employ the services of a licensed, professional locksmith. He or she know exactly what the most vulnerable places are and knows how to protect them.

Maintenance Is Very Important

You can have the most advanced security system in the world and think it protects your commercial property like no other. However, how long will it work flawlessly without proper maintenance? The first thing that will happen if you don’t maintain the system is that one of its parts will fail and will allow a thief to enter your property.

Another common occurrence with poorly maintained security systems is the false alarm. Out of the blue, the sirens wake up the entire street in the middle of the night and one or two police patrols rush to the scene only to find that one of the sensors is faulty. Maybe you’ll get away with a warning the first time. However, if this problem repeats, you will be fined for calling the police without reason.

There are many things that can happen when you don’t use the services of a good locksmith to maintain the security devices in your commercial property. People may get locked in. People in need of help may be prevented from leaving the property because one of the locks does not disengage. There are many things that can happen and, unfortunately, some of them may have dire consequences on your business.

You are encouraged to use alarms, CCTV cameras, security gates, security locks and reinforced doors. However, make sure these systems are very well maintained. They should work flawlessly because of the reasons listed above. After all, the security of your personnel and customers depends on the proper operation of the security system. A professional locksmith from Avondale Locksmith Stars can help you maintain everything and also provide valuable information on things that can be improved.

If you live in Avondale, Arizona, all you have to do is give our company a call and schedule a meeting with one of our contractors. We have years of experience in this field and we definitely know how to keep bad buys away from your employees, customers and valuables. It is 100% safe to work with our team. Rest assured that your information and details will never be used for any other purpose than to tighten the security inside your commercial property.

Choose The Right Locks

If you do not want your security to be compromised, it is important that you take your time to find the right locks for your home doors. You may be headed to the nearest hardware store or Home Depot. No matter where you decide to get your locks from, you’ll have to know what you are looking for. If you want to make life easy for yourself, you might just decide to get the same exact type of locks. The choice is really up to you. Some locks to become obsolete and are no longer made. If you find out that your locks are no longer being made, then what? You need to know what your next option is. In this article, we will help you navigate through the challenges of selecting the right locks. The right lock simply means a lock that will not be easily broken despite someone’s best efforts. There are plenty of these types of locks out there; you just need to know where to look.

lock change

What Are You Looking For

Something got you out of your home and in the hardware store on the search for new locks. If you wan the best lock possible, just know that you will have to spend a little more than you would for a standard, run of the mill type of lock. Some locks are simply designed to keep the door shut and then there are locks that are meant to provide maximum security, to keep intruders out. These locks are designed to help secure a certain area. In the situation that we are writing about this area includes the inside of your home. When you look at he rating on a lock that you pick up at the store, you probably don’t know what these numbers represent. They are supposed to indicate the durability level of the lock, however, in recent years, it has been determined that the party that conducts the testing of the locks is somewhat inaccurate. They do not represent the true ability of the lock itself.

Price Does Matter

Don’t let anyone tell you that price doesn’t matter this is not true. In terms of your locks, you actually do get what you pay for. Smart locks seem to be all the rage these days. If you are thinking of maximizing your home security with a smart lock, you should know that they are not cheap but are well worth the investment. It is because of the technology used to design this type of lock that you will be expected to pay more, not to mention its effectiveness in actually keeping out intruders. There are still good locks out there that also offer maximum security that are not smart locks. Again, you’re still going to have to pay more for them than you would a lock that is less durable. What you are ultimately paying for are the components of the lock and how it’s made. Better locks include solid construction, sturdier materials and security pins. These determine the level of effectiveness you will receive from the lock.

Knowledge About Lock Brands

While you might be familiar with some of the names of lock brands, such as, Kwikset, Medeco and Schlage, but you may not be familiar with their track record of effectiveness. Just because you know the names of some brands more than others doesn’t make them a good choice of locks. There are some major brands that still offer bad quality locks. If you find a brand that you are not as familiar with, it is usually because it is either very expensive and these manufacturers simply do not need to build brand awareness. On the other hand, if it is inexpensive, it is probably made oversees and the craftsmanship is horrible. The durability of the lock doesn’t depend on the brand. It is based on the fit of the lock that you need.

Where Deadbolts Are Placed

Deadbolts are usually found alongside another type of lock. You will probably have a lock and a deadbolt lock on the front doorknob of your home. This will be a keyed door with a knob cylinder. Deadbolts are double sided or single sided. Most front doors have a single sided deadbolt along with a thumb turn lock. This means that the door can be opened with a key from the outside. Double-sided deadbolt locks can be very problematic because they require a key be used on both sides in order to open the door. In an  emergency situation, you may be able to locate one key but not the other. You must consider carefully whether a double-sided deadbolt is the best option for you. If you can’t figure this out, you can certainly receive the help of an Avondale, AZ locksmith, such as, Avondale Locksmith Stars to advise you on the benefits and disadvantages of this type of lock.

Get What You Need

Proper Installation

What good is having new locks installed if they are not correctly installed. If you do not have the training or the experience, it might be best to allow a trained and experienced locksmith install your lock to ensure the job is done right. If you decide to change the type of lock that you already have installed on your front door, you should make sure that the deadbolt lock can be used alongside that type of lock. Not every lock can be used with a deadbolt lock.

Don’t Compromise Quality

It is possible to get a pretty good lock that is also durable without going broke. Do your research before heading to the hardware store to find out which types of keys and brands are best. This might require you to make some comparisons in order to make a good decision. Again, consulting with a local locksmith might prove especially helpful in determining the type of lock to buy. They know what works best since this is their field of expertise. You have nothing to lose by consulting an expert.

What to Do to Prevent Lockouts

Is it true? Can lockouts be prevented? Well; yes and no. While you CAN cut down on the incidences that happen to you, there’s no way to guarantee that they WON’T happen at all. No matter how observant or careful you are; all it takes is a split second and that locked door has suddenly closed behind you. One moment of inattention and your car keys can be sealed in the trunk along with the groceries you were loading. Avondale Locksmith Stars offers these helpful tips so that you can do what it takes to help cut lockout incidences from your life.

TRANSPONDER-KEYS

Listen to the experts!

Here in Avondale, AZ there are many locksmith shops that you can call upon if you are locked out (including ours!). But why even go through a lockout situation if you don’t have to? Our family owned company has been providing lockout services for many years so we’ve come to think that we know a thing or two about how to prevent them. Of course if you need lockout help and want fast and affordable service; call us! Avondale Locksmith Stars offers quick response, 24-hour help no matter where you are in town. You can be locked out of your car, home, workplace or business and all it takes to get back inside is a simple and easy phone tap!

Car lockouts

These happen daily all over town. One minute you think that your keys are resting safely on top of your car and then you close the driver’s door and suddenly realize that they were really on the passenger seat all along! Automotive lockouts happen so much because we use our cars so frequently and the more hustle and bustle we put into our day, the easier it is to forget where those darn keys are! Sometimes, car lockout situations can be more than just annoying; they can be dangerous, too! Imagine that you went to a meeting in a marginally safe neighborhood. It’s now dark and you want to go home when you realize that your key ring is still in the ignition. It’s getting dark and you can’t leave! Auto lockouts can also involve children or pets in the car that can’t let themselves out or even open a window.

Lockouts at home

These happen a lot, too. Many people keep the door leading from the garage into the home always locked. This can be a good habit to get into as crooks sometimes break into the garage and access the home from this door. Sometimes, this can backfire. It’s easy to assume that the front door is unlocked; especially if you went in and out a few times through it. All it takes is that one time when the front door is locked and suddenly; you are locked out of your home. Other incidences include going out for the mail or newspaper and the door locks behind and you closes. A simple case of key theft can also render you locked out of both home AND car!

Commercial lockouts

Believe it or not, people get locked out of their businesses quite frequently. It can be an owner or manager that simply went to raise the flag or hang the “open” sign outside that gets locked out. Or, maybe an absent minded staff member goes out for a cigarette break and the propped back door closes behind him accidentally. Since these rear entrance exit doors are often always locked, it’s easy to find yourself on the wrong side of it! Commercial lockouts can involve front, back and interior doors, swipe badge malfunctions, gate access failure, walk-in refrigerator lockouts and lots more.

Ok, ok; so what’s your advice?

Common sense tells us; there’s no fix-all for lockouts. Following these simple tips CAN cut down on the number of lockout incidents that you experience!  First of all – stay calm! Don’t be tempted to break into your own property! You may feel that you are in the right; but a police officer or an armed neighbor might think otherwise; especially if they don’t recognize you! Smashing a window or breaking in a door can also lead to injury for you and others. On top of that there are property damage and repair costs involved. Your best bet is to try and keep your cool and call for a locksmith to come and help. Secondly, call a friend or family member so that you can stay on the phone with them while you wait. This action also calms your nerves and gives you a potential “witness” or second voice should anything else go wrong.

Spare keys

Avondale Locksmith Stars is often asked if spare keys are a good idea. Yes and no. We DON’T recommend putting a spare key under the door mat or over the door sill like many do. Doing this makes it easy for you to get back in and it does the same for others, as well. If you want to use spare keys, be choosy and ONLY give one to a trusted neighbor, friend or family member.

Creature of habit

One often overlooked tip is to start putting things in the same place each time you use it. If you keep your keys, wallet, purse or remote control in the same place most times, it actually becomes a habit. You train your subconscious mind over time to always put the item in its place and when you don’t; that inner voice will tell you so. Practicing this tip can cut drastically down on the lockout incidences in your life as you don’t forget and leave the keys in the ignition because your habit says to clip them to your purse or put them into your pants, instead.

Avondale Locksmith Stars offers additional details on lockouts and all you have to do to access them is call us. We also offer 24-hour emergency service, free price quotes, and free consultations so take advantage of our affordability, expertise and vast experience with lockouts and give us a call!

 

IS YOUR SAFE JAMMED? HERE’S WHAT YOU CAN DO!

Is it impossible to get your safe open? First, don’t get stressed out. It’s certainly unnerving and inconvenient if you’re safe stops functioning, but don’t let it get you down. Typically, when a safe malfunctions, it happens while locked. Here are some common reasons why your safe won’t open. There are several things you can attempt before you have to call a safe technician.

SAFE

Dead batteries. It could be this simple. There may be sufficient power to operate the keypad, yet not enough for the bolt work to work. Therefore, even if the keypad beeps and lights up like normal, the issue may solved when you replace the batteries. Be sure to choose only a reputable brand, because off-brands generally lose power quickly.

Time delay. Does your safe have a time-delay feature? Then it’s necessary to wait for a specified period of time (usually 10 to 20 minutes). Now put in the code again, and it should work again.

Deactivated code. Your safe might not be opening because your code has been deactivated. In this case, it needs to be reset.

Jammed bolt work. Is the safe’s motor trying to retract the bolt work, yet still not opening? If so, kick the door, or bang it with a mallet. Not kidding. Go ahead and do it, as long as you don’t pound the handle or the keypad. If you do it right, it will loosen the bolt work. After that, try pulling the handle in the opposite direction of what you regularly do, and then enter the code. If you’re lucky, this will release the extra pressure on the bolt, so that the handle will finally move.

The wiring is disconnected and/or damaged. Your safe’s wiring may be disconnected, or it could require repair. Inspect the wiring behind the keypad, and you’ll find out if any wires are loose, kinked, or cut.

  • If it’s all good, then disconnect the wire temporarily from the keypad, and remove the batteries. Wait about 20 seconds. Now you can reconnect the wiring and put the batteries back in.
  • If the wiring’s damaged, it’s time to call a professional safe technician.

Lockout mode. If you’ve entered too many incorrect passcodes in a row, the safe will go into a penalty-lockout mode. Depending upon what kind of keypad your safe has, you may hear some rapid beeps. If so, wait 10 to 20 minutes or so. Then try opening your safe again.

What if you’re using the correct combination, but your safe still isn’t opening? If the safe has the traditional three-wheel combination lock (that is, three digits) then do this:

1. First, turn the dial to the left four times, until the first digit of your combination aligns with the opening index. On the fourth time, make sure to stop precisely on your number.

2. Now, turn the dial to the right three times, until the second digit of your combination aligns with the opening index. On the third time, stop exactly on your number.

3. Next, turn the dial to the left twice, until the third digit of your combination aligns with the opening index. On the second time, stop spot on your number.

4. Lastly, turn the dial to the right until it stops (around 95). If the dial doesn’t stop, then repeat your routine opening procedure, precisely dialing each digit of your combination. Remember, the safe will remain locked if you dial even slightly past any number you meant to stop on.

5. To lock your combination lock again, turn the dial four complete revolutions, stopping on any number that’s not part of your combination.

 

What if your safe still won’t open? Please, don’t drill your safe, or you’ll damage it! At this point, there’s truly no denying that you’re going to have to call an expert safe technician.

 

What if your safe doesn’t lock at all, but it stays open instead? Check on these issues:

  • First, replace the batteries. Use only a top name brand.
  • Now, be sure the edges of the cover are aligned. Make sure there isn’t any debris stuck in the edges.
  • See that the bolts aren’t bent or otherwise damaged, and ensure that the holes that they go into aren’t blocked by any debris.
  • Try “locking” your safe, even if the door stays open. If the locking mechanism still functions, you’ll know the problem lies elsewhere.
  • Finally, lubricate the locking mechanism. If a spring is stuck, this might do the trick. Be sure to use the proper lubricant. Lubricant for a combination lock is different from the lubrication applied on a keyed lock, which is traditionally graphite-based.

 

Did you forget or misplace the combination? Then find a legitimate safe technician with the expertise and knowhow required to open your safe. A premium safe technician will make your safe more secure than it was before, without damaging it.

 

Do not try to “crack” your own safe! Getting safes open, and properly working with combination locks (digital or mechanical), are very specialized tasks requiring exceptional skill, precision, and experience. Hire a trustworthy expert with an in-depth understanding of the maintenance requirements and various locking methods of today’s safes.

One mistaken belief about having your safe opened by a professional is that the safe will get damaged in the process ~ but this won’t be the case if you find a legitimate qualified safe specialist. Be skeptical of anyone claiming to be a safe professional who doesn’t have the proper credentials. Choose an accomplished safe technician you can rely on, someone who is officially certified, fully licensed, appropriately bonded, thoroughly background-checked, and suitably insured. Hire a dependable individual who will bring the right tools, possessing the necessary sensitivity and skill with touch and sound.

If you’re located anywhere in Avondale, Arizona, consider contacting Avondale Locksmith Stars, where you can request a free consultation with a mobile safe technician on staff. Be sure you get your questions answered to your satisfaction before you give permission for any work to begin.