lock latch got stuck (unlatch didn't work)


Old 06-05-13, 10:35 AM
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Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: usa
Posts: 222
lock latch got stuck (unlatch didn't work)

I got a door lock which didn't unlatch. Even I took out the lock and manually pulled the latch. it didn't work. I ended up spending two hours drilling out part of the latch etc.

eventually I had a help and we used a putty knife plus a flat screw driver to get it unlatched (by wiggling between the door trim and door).

my question is: is there a specialized tool lock smith uses that will make it easier for one person to unlatch in case latch gets stuck like this? Putty knife worked. but it doesn't have much of a grip and it's a hit and miss.
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Old 06-05-13, 02:04 PM
GlobalLocky's Avatar
Join Date: May 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 940
In another thread I suggested the easy way to do this. wedge the door between door and frame and use a piece of plastic (cutout from a plastic coke bottle) about 3" x 5" to create a tool to "loid" the latch.

the wedge is used to widen the gap between door and frame and this usually will allow the little deadlacth to pop out further making it easier to slip the latch.
Old 06-05-13, 02:18 PM
Gunguy45's Avatar
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: USA
Posts: 21,045
I have a piece of vinyl vertical blind about 6"x3" that works wonderfully. It's got a slight concave curve which makes it stiff when required, but flattens right out to slide between the door and frame. Home centers probably have stacks of them from custom cutting blinds.

I can open my neighbors garage mandoor faster with it than by using the key. Just so you know...I pick up his mail and package deliveries when they vacation. He knows about it.

Of course this only works if you are on the side with the door swinging away from you, which puts the bevel on the latch facing you. Otherwise you need something stiffer that will dig in to the latch. A stiff putty knife or old wood chisel is what I have used in the past. Dunno if Pro's have a special tool or not.
Old 06-29-13, 09:03 PM
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 1,197
The "Pro's" "Special Tool" for outswing doors is a random piece of sheet metal with a hook
on the end to slip behind the latch bevel. :-] (A "Slim Jim" works , too)

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