When to Consider Rekeying Locks When to Consider Rekeying Locks

Rekeying locks, especially in situations where you expect certain changes such as people who use these locks, is not uncommon. You may need to rekey a lock that has previously been used by someone who no longer is authorized to open this lock. Or, you may need to rekey to protect your belongings from people who had previously had keys to one of your locks. Whatever your reason for re-keying, if you want to save on the cost of hiring a locksmith, you will need information such as that you'll find below.

Reasons for Rekeying

A change of residence is one of the most common reasons for needing to rekey a lock. Other situations that call for changing a lock may include hiring new employees, or a change in renters of your property. It may be wise for you to avoid assuming that just because keys you've given to others have been returned, this does not mean the former users of your keys have not made copies of these keys. The only way to be safe and secure is to rekey, or change your lock.

Rekeying vs. New Locks

When evaluating your privacy and security needs where it involves locks, and when you experience changes such as those described above, your options typically are to install a new lock or rekey your old one. Often, the matter rests more on cost than on the degree of security each of these options offer. If cost, for you, is an important factor, you should compare costs of labor to hire a locksmith to rekey your locks, the cost of new replacement locks, and costs related to rekeying your own locks.

Rekeying Your Own Locks

If you were to decide to rekey your own locks, you will likely purchase rekeying kits that provide all the material and some of the tools you'll need for rekeying. If you do your own rekeying, there are specific steps you'll need to take, such as those below. For example, if you are rekeying a door lock, here's what you'll need to do::

  • Unlock the door on which your lock will be rekeyed
  • Remove the doorknob with the tool from your kit
  • Remove the cylinder from the knob assembly
  • Remove the knob sleeve
  • Remove the cylinder
  • From the lock cylinder, remove the retainer ring
  • Into the existing lock, insert the key that fits the lock, and turn the key
  • Use the special tool in your kit to remove the cylinder plug.
  • Remove the pins from the cylinder.
  • Insert the new key
  • Match the color code on your kit instructions with the new colored pins (you'll need a pair of needle nose pliers or tweezers), then insert these pins into the cylinder.
  • Put all parts of the lock back together

Rekeying  a Lock With Tumblers

Some locks use tumblers that may be of different sizes. If you plan to rekey one of these locks, you'll need to know that their tumblers will need to be changed. With new tumblers you'll need to use a new key that will fit them. The old key will not fit. To change these tumblers you may need help from a locksmith.

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