Outside deadbolt,only 3 years old suddenly stuck, key turns but bolt won't budge

Reply

  #1  
Old 01-05-15, 06:55 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Arlington, VA
Posts: 811
Outside deadbolt,only 3 years old suddenly stuck, key turns but bolt won't budge

Initially it wouldn't open but then after jamming it into the inside (unlocked position) now it won't come out even though the key turns ... any ideas?
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 01-05-15, 07:28 PM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 1,168
You're going to have to take it off the door so you can troubleshoot the 3 sub-assemblies: inner thumbturn (or cylinder), outer cylinder and bolt.

A couple of pictures would help, as we have no idea what brand/style lock you have.

If it's "consumer grade" (low-cost big box purchase) replacement parts are usually not available and not worth fooling with for the cost of a replacement.

If nothing appears to be broken, assemble the lock in your hand and check operation; put a drop or 2 of oil on the moving parts (not in the keyhole!) and see if it improves. Finally, make sure the bolt slides freely into the strike plate hole without binding.
 
  #3  
Old 01-06-15, 12:15 AM
GlobalLocky's Avatar
Member
Join Date: May 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 925
very common with the Kwikset Smart Key locks. trash it and buy a new one...they arent worth fixing.

In almost all projects of similar ilk in the last 2 years.....it is always the Kwikset Smartkey that causes your problem.
 

Last edited by GlobalLocky; 01-06-15 at 12:16 AM. Reason: spelling
  #4  
Old 01-10-15, 12:22 PM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 1,168
Can't give further advice without more info/pics.
 
  #5  
Old 01-11-15, 06:22 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Arlington, VA
Posts: 811
oops, my fault, pictures are attached
 
  #6  
Old 01-12-15, 01:48 PM
GlobalLocky's Avatar
Member
Join Date: May 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 925
thats a Schlage double cylinder deadbolt and illegal in most places, especially fitted to what clearly looks like an exit door on a building.

Pry the tabs covering the screws and remove and replace with a single cylinder deadbolt.

otherwise, sounds like a broken tailpiece
 
  #7  
Old 01-14-15, 06:30 PM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 1,168
If the key turns round and round freely, it is as Global suggested, a broken connector (tailpiece); replace lock.

If the key turns freely to a certain point (1/4 to 1/2 turn) then stops, and will not throw the bolt with moderate pressure, (and assuming the lock has not been removed then re-installed incorrectly, ie., "out-of-time"), the bolt is bent/broken and the whole lock should be replaced.

Having said the above, there are some brands of double cylinder deadbolts in which the bolt will operate much better if well-lubed, and care is taken to ensure the tailpieces are not too long for the thickness of the door.
 
  #8  
Old 01-14-15, 06:40 PM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 1,168
@ Global: taking a closer gander at the keyway, it looks kinda like an Arrow...or imported look-alike.

@ OP: A lock's brand is usually stamped on the latch plate (edge of door), just curious, as the cheaper brands are not very forgiving of any abuse.

If it is an old Arrow, does my memory serve correctly that turning the inside key reveals access to the screws?
 
  #9  
Old 01-15-15, 12:35 PM
GlobalLocky's Avatar
Member
Join Date: May 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 925
you might be right. I suggested Schlage because the inside screw face looks like it has those little tabs that block the screwdriver from inserting.
 
  #10  
Old 01-15-15, 02:35 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Arlington, VA
Posts: 811
I just bought a new Schlage that looks the right size and I'm going to replace it. Any online tutorials on how to get the old one off or at least what tools I'll need?
 
  #11  
Old 01-15-15, 05:45 PM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 1,168
If it's a Arrow brand (or clone) turning the inside key a little bit one way or the other, should rotate an internal shutter that at a certain point will reveal the screws on either side of the keyhole. If this fails to happen, look closely at what appear in your photo to be the little covers or discs covering the screw heads; sometimes these have to be pried out with a pocket knife or similar...the screws are then extracted usually with a #1 Phillips screwdriver.

If it's evident that the covers are caps that have to be pried out, and the knife doesn't work, drill a 1/8" hole dead center, then use an ice pick to pry it out.

If you can get a brand name for us, we'll likely have more info.
 
  #12  
Old 01-15-15, 06:14 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Arlington, VA
Posts: 811
opps, brand is Schlage, I should have a skinny philips to get in there
 
  #13  
Old 01-15-15, 07:42 PM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 1,168
Guess I'd better check my glasses, having thought it was an Arrow keyway ...Yeah, you should be able to pry out the screw caps...I use 2 small (jeweler size) screwdrivers on either side of the caps...that way you pry each side evenly, usually works better than prying one side at a time.
 
  #14  
Old 01-16-15, 12:11 AM
GlobalLocky's Avatar
Member
Join Date: May 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 925
I usually use a wood chisel, slide the sharp edge in with the bevel against the lock body...light tap with hammer to get under tab and then push slowly to pry the tab out.
 
  #15  
Old 01-16-15, 10:04 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Arlington, VA
Posts: 811
I replaced the deadbolt with another Schlage, everything's fine except when I tighten the two long tightening bolts (that bring the two pieces together from opposite ends of the door/gate), the key becomes harder to turn the bolt in and out. If I loosen the bolts, the key turns freely. Is this just a matter of "breaking in"? I figure the tightening bolts need to be tight.
 

Last edited by MichaelChang; 01-16-15 at 10:46 AM.
  #16  
Old 01-16-15, 03:02 PM
GlobalLocky's Avatar
Member
Join Date: May 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 925
It means that either the original crossbore holes are off by a bit (warped) or you might need to pack out the external or internal body fractionally.
 
  #17  
Old 01-16-15, 03:55 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Arlington, VA
Posts: 811
I have no idea what any of that means :-o
 
  #18  
Old 01-16-15, 07:57 PM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 1,168
He means either the 2 sides are not aligned properly or, more likely, the cylinders are not spaced far enough apart when tightened, resulting in the little actuating bars (called "tailpieces") protruding too far and impinging on the opposite sides. Look at your instructions, the deadbolt should adapt to a door thickness between 1-7/8" down to 1-3/8" or so. Most weldable lock boxes (what you have) are 1-1/2" thick. There should be a pair of spacer rings that came with the lock (at least they used to) to be used when the door is less than 1-5/8" or so. If your box is only 1-1/4" thick (rare, but possible) you will need to not only use these spacers, but do a little "southern engineering" like filing the tailpieces a bit shorter or better, obtaining a pair of so-called "goof rings" from your local smithy; they fit between the locks' collar and the metal box, and serve to space the locks out a further 1/8". Also, when tightening the screws to the bolt assembly, (& before installing the cylinders) be sure it rests, or can be easily aligned at dead center between the 2 sides; it will need to assume that position when the cylinders are tightened.
 
  #19  
Old 01-16-15, 08:02 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Arlington, VA
Posts: 811
I didn't get any spacers so it looks like some southern engineering is in order
 
  #20  
Old 01-16-15, 08:19 PM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 1,168
They may be making them differently now, but you should still check the instructions for the door thickness range & measure what your steel box is...it could also be that if the box is quite old and thinned from rust, tightening the screws might cause the box to collapse or bend inward ever so slightly so as to further reduce what you previously measured.

And back to Global's 1st point: Alignment is very critical, esp. on thin doors; with the bolt secured in place, hold one of the sides (cylinder) in place while you eyeball it thru the other (open) side, to see that the tailpiece protrudes thru the bolt cam very straight. Then repeat for the other side, eyeballing for proper alignment.
 
  #21  
Old 01-16-15, 11:28 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Arlington, VA
Posts: 811
actually would there be a thick "washer" available for this type of thing that I could get at Home Depot or my local locksmith?
 
  #22  
Old 01-17-15, 08:19 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Arlington, VA
Posts: 811
Here's how I engineered the spacer solution
 
  #23  
Old 01-17-15, 08:25 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Arlington, VA
Posts: 811
I want to do the other gate-door while I'm at it but this one looks different. Specifically it has no way of accessing the tightening bolts. Also there is no brand name on it and I didn't see anything of that size at Home Depot. Anyone seen these before?
 
  #24  
Old 01-18-15, 08:45 AM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 1,168
To your 1st solution: Congrats, you have made the perfect goof rings! (albeit at high labor cost)

I don't recognize the next photos as a US-made atrium lock...no brand name could mean it's imported or OEM'd for the door manufacturer. At any rate, a photo of the lock's edge would give further info as to how to remove it. The lock body is normally held into the door by a top and bottom edge screw, sometimes concealed under a thin decorative trim plate (called variously a faceplate, front, scalp) itself held on with small screws. Once removed you should see the main body screws and the set screw(s) opposite the key cylinders, (which need to be loosened 2-3 turns to allow the cylinders to be unscrewed). Then, if removing the screws holding the plate around the inner lever do not release the lever as well, look for a small set screw in the lever shaft, it may take an allen wrench, and could be very tight, so take care to get the correct wrench size on it.

Also, be aware that on steel doors, after-the-fact modifications might have been made such as a welded-on latch guard (what you appear to have) that can block access to lock screws, or make it otherwise difficult to remove.
 
  #25  
Old 01-18-15, 09:08 AM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 1,168
BTW, assuming the key will operate a deadbolt, and this appears to be an exterior security door, most jurisdictions will not permit key operation on the inside, it being a fire hazard. It's done now & then anyway on bar metal doors where you could otherwise stick your hand thru the bars and unlock the door, but in your case, it appears that you can't do that. So you would not give up security by removing the inner key cylinder & replacing it with a "mortise thumbturn".

I don't know your exact circumstances, but we try to think of life-safety issues before security issues.
 
  #26  
Old 01-18-15, 03:42 PM
GlobalLocky's Avatar
Member
Join Date: May 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 925
On to the new one. It seems that you might be better served calling a professional locksmith. But in this case I will try to explain in simple terms for you.

I doubt this age lock will be able to be replaced, if it is the one I think. The curved latch protector is the giveaway. I suggest that you have a swing bolt and a latch that is independent below it. The curved latch protector is probably riveted on. If not, simply remove and then undo the cylinder retaining screws. Unwind the cylinders and replace
 
  #27  
Old 01-21-15, 04:12 PM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 1,168
On the inside view, where you can barely see the edge mortise, the alignment of the cylinders and lever spindle look like they could operate an Adams Rite MS+1890, except that I don't recall A/R ever using a lever of that "olde European" style, and I don't see a latch sticking out. Still need an edge view.
 
  #28  
Old 01-21-15, 06:31 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Arlington, VA
Posts: 811
The diameter of each individual individual cylinder seems to be about 1 1/2"
The thickness seems to be about 5/8"
The "bolt" isn't really a conventional deadbolt, it "flips" out from the bottom, hopefully these pictures help.
 
  #29  
Old 01-23-15, 11:28 AM
GlobalLocky's Avatar
Member
Join Date: May 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 925
yes that is precisely what I was describing. The product has not been made for a great many years.
I have worked on numerous....when the latch wears out...the product cannot be replaced with new.
Undo the philips screws on the edge, remove the curved blocker and you will have access to the retaining screws.
 
  #30  
Old 01-23-15, 01:28 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Arlington, VA
Posts: 811
is there anything I can substitute in its' place? the deadbolt I've seen are too wide for the space that this existing thing occupies.
 
  #31  
Old 01-25-15, 12:31 AM
GlobalLocky's Avatar
Member
Join Date: May 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 925
No. The product was discontinued due to too many compatibility issues and that the latch kept breaking down.
The swing bolt product line was developed for commercial storefront doors and didnt really see much traction in the residential market.
 
  #32  
Old 01-25-15, 12:35 AM
GlobalLocky's Avatar
Member
Join Date: May 2006
Location: USA
Posts: 925
modifying the door frame might be an option for installing a narrow style atrium type lock...but that could be rediculously expensive and time consuming. Might even be cheaper to replace the door.

They were used primarily because they were thinner than other products and worked in the narrow width frames they built in yesteryear.
 
  #33  
Old 01-27-15, 09:51 PM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 1,168
The edge view shows what is definitely an Adams-Rite lock but, as Global stated, this early version has been discontinued, I believe. However, the Adams-Rite MS+1890 lock is still being made, (at least it's still shown on their website), and what you have is an early version of that. The modern version has a hookbolt and a plastic-insert latch, but the installation dimensions should be the same as the older versions. This is strictly a commercial lock, not found at home centers.

Remove the edge latchguard plate to reveal the locks' edge, remove the fastening screws, and loosen the 2 small set screws opposite the key cylinders so they can be unscrewed. (Key cylinders are purchased separately, if need be). Take the lock to your local smithy so you can compare the dimensions with the modern version. (There are 3 backset measurements available, yours looks like 31/32", but your smithy will know when he sees it). Don't be surprised if he doesn't have one on the shelf, they are not common, but most locksmiths have fairly current catalogues that show cut-sheets & dimensions.

The deadbolts on these locks rarely fail & last forever, but the little springlatch fails often.
 
  #34  
Old 01-28-15, 08:26 AM
Member
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 1,168
If you've not removed the lock yet, I just looked at the catalog and FYI the critical dimension of key cylinder centerline to lever spindle centerline is 5.556".

I would think this dimension would be the same as the older version, but I don't know for sure.
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes
'