How Does a Cylinder Lock Work? How Does a Cylinder Lock Work?

The most common type of house locks you can get will have a lock cylinder integrated into them. The major benefit of these sorts of locks for your house is that they are easy to access should you need to fix them. You can simply open up the cylinder and remove a few screws in order to replace the mechanism. If you hire a professional, then he or she should be able to fix your lock in a very short period of time. There is no need to touch the bolt of the door at all when removing the cylinder.

Understanding What a Cylinder Lock Is

There are two locks that are present on houses more than any others. These are basic key locks that are prominent in doorknob and deadbolt locks. The key lock features a cylinder that is positioned along the line of the middle of lock and runs into the door. When you unlock or lock the door, there are number of parts that work in conjunction with the key in order to make the lock function correctly. There is a specific part which is known as a tang. This part sits inside the center of the cylinder when the door is unlocked. However, when you lock the door this part becomes partly inside and partly outside of the cylinder.

How the Lock Works

In order that the tang is released, a key has to be used to trigger the mechanism. Once the cylinder starts to turn, a spring sends the tang into the locked position to make sure that the door will not move. The tang then keeps the door firmly secure until it is unlocked again. In some cases there is a button on the inside of the door that can be pressed to trigger the same result as turning a key. Even if this is the case, you will still need a key to lock and unlock the door from the outside of the house.

What the Key Does

The way that cylinder locks are made and designed means that only one specific key can unlock a certain type of lock. Only this key will actually turn the cylinder. If you open up the cylinder you will find various pins of different heights inside. There are springs that hold the pins tight inside. The upper pins are the important part of this, as they will stop the cylinder turning when in a locked position. As soon as the door is unlocked then these pins are released causing the cylinder to turn again. The reason most keys you use for these locks have notches on them is so that each pin can be moved into it correct position and height. Once there is a gap between the upper and lower pins then the cylinder will move and trigger the unlocking mechanism. Subsequently, if the key you use is not the correct one for that particular lock, then you will not have the right pattern to move the pins accordingly. Without the pins in their right positions and height, then the door will stay locked and the key will not turn.

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