Posted on: 11 February 2016
When you're locked out, it's always good to call an emergency locksmith rather than try to break in yourself; the cost of replacing a broken window for your home or your car can be more expensive than the cost of a locksmith, and you may very well hurt yourself trying to climb into your home's kitchen window. If you ever need the services of an emergency locksmith, note a few questions you might have.
1. Don't emergency locksmiths carry master keys to everything?
Many people assume that there is a master key to every type of lock, but this isn't the case. Different models of cars will have different types of locks, and different brands of locks for entryway doors may all have different types of cylinders and tumblers inside. When you call an emergency locksmith, be prepared to tell them your car's year, make, and model, or the type of lock on your home's front door if you're locked out of your home, rather than assuming they'll just have some type of master key. This will ensure they bring the right tools to help get you back in quickly and easily.
2. The lock got damaged from attempts to open it; can a locksmith still salvage it?
Another reason to avoid trying to open a lock yourself is that you may damage the lock; your makeshift lock pick may get stuck or you may break the tumblers inside. However, in some cases an emergency locksmith may be able to salvage the lock, depending on the damage. Be sure you note what you did and the current condition of the lock when you call; if it's just a pin stuck in the lock, they may be able to dig it out. However, if you used something like a screwdriver to try to open the lock and the lock itself is broken, it may need to be replaced. Tell the emergency locksmith when you call so they can bring out a replacement lock as needed.
3. What is meant by re-keying?
Re-keying your locks means to reset the tumblers or cylinders inside the lock so that they work with a different key. This is different than replacing your locks and it can be a more cost-effective way of changing locks if you've lost your keys. Rather than replacing the locks to your car or your home, an emergency locksmith can often simply re-key those locks and give you new keys to fit.