Replacing Your Locks: What to Expect From a Locksmith

The locks in your home are a big part of feeling secure and making sure that you know who might have access. If you have recently moved into a new home, have keys that are unaccounted for, notice damage to your locks, or locks that are sticking or turning with difficulty, it might be time to replace them!

Types of locks

A basic lock is made of a cylinder, which contains the tumblers to which your key is fitted. This allows the key to turn and slide the bolt home. However, different types of locks modify that basic design to suit a range of purposes.

Euro lock

One of the most common lock styles, this is a good choice for general purposes like doors and gates. Opt for cylinders certified secure against ‘lock snapping.’

Yale lock

Also called a night-latch, these are typically used on doors rather than gates or windows. They latch automatically, and require a key to open from the outside.

Mortice lock

A highly secure lock available in both sash lock and deadlock styles. Sash locks are built into the handle mechanism, while deadlocks are completely separate and must be opened using a key or thumb turn.

Multi-point locks

These locks secure a door at multiple points with a single key turn. Most include at least two bolts, plus as hooks that sink into the door frame. They are among the most secure locks on the market.

Calling on the Pros

When you hire a locksmith, let them know how many locks will need to be changed. They’ll schedule an appointment and give you an idea of how long the process will take. This will differ depending on how many locks need to be changed, and what style of lock you’ve chosen.

Try to be on site while your locksmith is working. This lets you guarantee you’re in possession of all the correct keys, and also gives you a chance to ask any other security questions you may have. Once the locks are changed, your locksmith will provide you with at least one key to them; be careful who has access to any extras you have cut! Your locksmith can also demonstrate how to correctly use your locks—some styles, especially multi-point locks, may require more than simply turning a key or a thumbturn to ensure the lock is secure.