Your locks keep your home safe, but like anything else they can wear out over time. Fortunately, this is often easy to fix with some basic maintenance.
This might include spraying compressed air into the key hole to clear out any dust or debris. It might also involve applying some lubricant to the lock mechanism.
Locks are a crucial part of the security system of your home. When yours break down, you may feel anxiety about the safety of your loved ones and possessions. But don’t fret – there are locksmiths who can help.
The first step to replacing your lock is choosing the right one for your door. There are many different types of locks available, and they vary widely in quality. You’ll need to look at the ANSI/BHMA rating system, which grades hardware for factors like bolt strength, overall security and durability.
Once you’ve chosen a new lock, it’s time to prepare the door for its installation. First, check that the hole in the guide line is the right distance from the edge of the door – it should be either 2 3/8” or 2 3/4”. This will determine how deep to cut into the door. It’s then a matter of chiseling out the desired shape.
A deadbolt is the best way to secure your home from physical attacks that can be accomplished by forcibly opening a standard lock. They have a unique locking mechanism that can only be opened with a key or thumbturn, making them more difficult to break through than regular locks that operate on springs.
Start by inserting the bolt assembly into the lock. You may need to adjust the length of the bolt assembly depending on your chosen backset measurement; for this step, refer to a template or detailed instructions provided by the lock manufacturer.
Some deadbolts come with metal screw covers that close when the bolt is extended; remove these cover screws to reveal the screw heads. Then, use a drill to create a hole in the doorjamb that is a little bigger than the size of the lock cylinder. Screw in the two mounting screws for the deadbolt cylinder using a cordless drill to speed up the process.
Knob locks (sometimes called door levers) are used to secure homes, offices and commercial buildings. They are easy to install and can help prevent unauthorized entry and keep children from harm.
Before installing a new knob, you will need to remove the old one and make room for it. To do this, loosen and remove the screws that hold both the outside and inside housings of the latch system together. You will also need to carve a mortise–or groove–in the door using a chisel, depending on the type of lock you have purchased.
Once the mortise is prepared, you can install the knob and latch mechanism. Ensure that the long spindle on the outside housing of the knob lines up with the square steel peg in the latch. Screw in the latch mechanism, then attach the strike plate. This is where the door swings when closed, so it’s important that it’s positioned correctly. Then test the lock to be sure it shuts properly and securely.
Strike Plate Installation
A strike plate mounts to the door frame to provide a solid surface for the latch bolt to engage when closing the lock. This provides security against break-ins and increases the longevity of your locks.
Using the template that came with your lock, mark where the strike plate will go. A cross mark should land 11/16 inch in from the edge of the jamb for interior doors and 7/8 inch for exterior doors.
If the existing strike plate is already in place, use a wood chisel to reposition it into a new hole in the door jamb. If a mortise must be created, bore a pair of holes spaced as the strike plate’s width and depth to accommodate the latch bolt.
To ensure the strike plate is properly positioned, coat the end of your bolt or latch with lipstick. Shut the door and look at the lipstick mark to determine if the latch sits too high or low in the strike plate.