Warning Signs Your House Needs Door Lock Repair or Replacement‎

Fatima Buzdar

September 21, 2022

A close-up of a white door slightly ajar with a modern silver door handle and a key inserted in the keyhole. A blue keychain dangles from the key, possibly left by a locksmith. The background shows a blurry green landscape and part of a house.

According to a survey reported by Statista, 137,516 burglaries occurred in Canada throughout 2020. With this threat in the air, robust security for your house is essential. Locks are the most vital measure to keep you and your loved ones safe in your house, as well as protect your valuables.

As such, it is extremely important that your external house locks are working in perfect condition. House locks tend to go through constant daily use and along with time, they’re prone to wear down. If they have notably worn down and the signs are neglected, they can be prone to be compromised by malicious hands and make you face a tragedy in a worst-case scenario.

In order to avoid that danger, you should make sure to check on your locks often. Along with doing your part to maintain your locks, be sure to be on the lookout for signs that may require door lock repair or door lock replacement services. Read more to know what signs to watch out for, how you can avoid them, and how a locksmith can assist with any door lock problem.

Signs of Door Lock Problems

Due to aging process, it is natural for a lock to lose its good condition. The weather also plays a part in deteriorating it. Lack of maintenance, delayed repairs and rough usage can exacerbate these natural causes.

There are many signs that your door lock requires repair. If you notice any of these signs, it is paramount to get your door lock fixed as soon as possible. A locksmith can diagnose the issue and get your lock back to working good as new and sturdily. Be on the lookout for these 7 signs.

1. Door Latch Stuck Closed or Opened

There are various reasons why a door latch may be stuck closed or opened. For example, the friction caused by lack of proper lubrication can be the cause. Otherwise, there may be malfunctioning internal mechanisms and screws preventing the door latch from working properly.

There also may be debris or other elements like rust building up inside the door latch mechanism. This may require the lock to be disassembled for thorough cleaning and polishing. It may be hard to clean up some of the build—up on your own and require more sophisticated cleaning techniques.

Alternatively, the problem may be due to the misalignment of the strike plate. This may be caused by moisture penetration, door frame stretching with age, etc. A strike plate is the metal plate on the door frame that engages with the bolt of the lock. An expert locksmith can diagnose and solve this as well.

A door latch stuck closed or opened is a common door lock problem that can be highly inconvenient or even dangerous. It may lock you out of your house or prevent you from exiting if it won’t retract, or it would not let you lock the door and leave your house vulnerable if it won’t latch. It is a worrying sign that needs to be investigated by a locksmith promptly.

2. Key Does Not Fit Properly In Door Lock

Your key seems to not fit as snugly into the lock as it used to, e.g. it does not go all the way into the lock hole. The cause may be debris or any other obstruction stuck in the lock. If there is anything stuck in the lock, even if small, it may obstruct the key from coming in properly. It may be hard for you to notice and reach obstructions, but a locksmith is equipped with tools to handle this.

Alternatively, the key itself might be the problem. For example, a key may be bent or misshapen due to usage. A locksmith can easily craft a new key for you in that case.

Either way, the hassle to unlock the door would be bothersome. If its solution is ignored, you can risk being locked out with it completely stopping to work eventually.

3. Door Lock Is Jammed or Works Slowly

The key goes inside but the door does not lock or unlock, or doing either takes hassle. The key may also jam in the lock hole. The cause may be that the cylinder is too dry for the pins to function properly. The pins inside the lock move up when the correct key is inserted to allow the lock to spin and open. With too much dryness and consequential friction, they may jam in their place and hold the door lock back from unlocking.

4. Door Lock Feels Loose

If the door lock feels loose when you use it, the underlying cause may be the internal components of the lock not being connected properly anymore. That may be due to screws not working properly or other components malfunctioning.

5. Frozen Door Lock Parts

During a cold weather, an exterior door lock may be prone to have frozen parts. These can make the door lock components vulnerable to breaking or getting weakened, or having gunk stuck inside. If you notice your door lock looking notably frozen or showing abnormal signs after a cold weather patch, you should have it checked by a locksmith so that it can be inspected and repaired to avoid further damage.

6. Noise When Turning Keys In Door Lock

You can hear a clicking or grinding noise when you turn the key in the lock. This is another sign that the internal mechanisms are wearing out and need repair or replacement.

7. Entire Door Lock Cylinder Turns

The whole cylinder or lockset turning when you turn the key in lock is a sign of damaged or loose screws. For optimal security, the screws of your door lock mechanisms should be in a good and tightened condition. The faceplate would be required to be removed to investigate and repair the screws.

Do You Need A Door Lock Replacement?

Locks last about seven years on average. Due to aging near that period or other causes, the lock may be beyond repair and you may need a door lock replacement. A locksmith can diagnose this need and replace it with a secure lock that is best fit for your door.

Along with deterioration and aforementioned issues that have a dire progression, a potential security breach is also an extremely important reason to have your lock replaced. For example, if you lost your key, then you should contact a locksmith promptly to have it replaced. If the lost key ends up within malicious hands and your location is known by the new holder, your house can be in dire danger.

Additionally, you should also keep an eye for the signs that your lock has been tempered. This may be noticed by seeing bent latch or deadbolt, or fine scratch marks on the lock. The recommended course of action in that case would be to have your lock replaced.

How Can a Locksmith Help?

Your door mechanisms are more intricate and tricky to inspect for issues and troubleshoot than you may think. A locksmith is equipped with tools to strengthen the security of your home. They can assess the damage to the lock and determine what needs to be done to fix it. They can also provide replacement parts or even whole new locks and keys if necessary.

What Are the Benefits of Regularly Repairing the Door Lock Mechanisms?

There are numerous benefits to having a door lock repaired. A locksmith can help you solve any problems that may be causing your lock to malfunction, and they can also provide you with advice on how to keep your security system up—to—date.

A locksmith can help you with a variety of issues with your door lock, including malfunctions, outdated security systems, and broken keys. They can also offer advice on keeping your security system updated and effective. By repairing or replacing your door lock, you’ll get the protection it needs and ensure that everything is running smoothly in terms of security.

How Often Should You Have Your Door Lock Repaired?

How often you have your door lock repaired depends on how often it is used. A front door that is used daily may need to be repaired more often than a back door that is only used occasionally. For the front door, it is recommended to have it inspected and repaired annually. Regularly repairing your door lock can help to extend its life and prevent potential problems. It can also help to ensure that your home is secure, as a damaged or faulty lock could be easily forced open.

If you are unsure of how often you should have your door lock repaired, or if you have any concerns about the security of your home, then it is advisable to contact a locksmith for advice. They will be able to carry out a full assessment of your locks and advise you on the best course of action.

What Are the Risks of Not Fixing Your Door Lock Problems?

 Door locks can have many consequences if they’re not repaired and kept up—to—date. The risks of not repairing your door lock include:

  • Compromised security: A damaged door lock that can be prone to open with little effort can make your house vulnerable to unauthorized entry into your home. If someone is able to get past the security of your door, they could potentially damage property or harass you.
  • Inconveniences: If your door lock is not repaired, you may have difficulty locking or unlocking the door. An unlocked door is open to expose you and your house to unwelcome people at best and serious danger at worst as aforementioned. And a locked door refusing to unlock can be extremely troublesome too. You would not want to be locked out of your house with no way in. Additionally, this also can lead to dire danger if you are unable to get out of your home in an emergency situation.
  • Invalidated home insurance: If you experience a burglary due to inadequate measures to protect your house with locks in good condition, your home insurance might be prone to be void. In such cases, the insurance company might refuse to compensate for any liabilities due to the lack of proper maintenance. This could leave you financially burdened for compensating the damages and losses that occur during a break—in.
  • Heftier costs: As with any other mechanism, neglecting problems with your locks and delaying their solutions would worsen the issues and build up the costs for repairs. You may even have to replace the lock entirely, when it could have been avoided with proper care.
  • Prone to causing an injury: A damaged and loose lock might fall down. If it is damaged to that point and falls upon you, you can get injured. Locks with broken parts might cause injuries to your family members, especially the children. When a lock doesn’t function as it should, you may be forced to resort to breaking in through other means such as smashing the window or kicking down the door.

All in all, delaying the solutions would not do you any favor. Repairing your door lock may cost money, but it is absolutely worth doing so. A locksmith can help you determine if the lock needs repair and guide you through the process of getting it done.

How to Maintain Your Door Lock?

While a regular schedule of professional care helps tremendously, you should also play your part in taking care of your lock. In order to maximize your door lock lifespan, make sure to take the following measures to take good care of your lock.

Clean on a Regular Basis

Like every mechanism, your locks need to be cleaned up regularly to work properly and avoid a buildup that would be persistent to be cleaned off. A rag damp with just water, mild detergent or soap will do. Avoid abrasive cleaners as they can erode your lock. Ideally, the lock should be disassembled to be cleaned perfectly, but it is best to leave it to a locksmith if you do not have good knowledge about doing it.

Lubricate Once or Twice a Year

You should ideally lubricate your locks every six months or annually to keep it moving smoothly. Dry lubricants like graphite, silicon, and Teflon are the best for locks. Never use oil to lubricate your lock; that will foster grime in the lock and deteriorate its condition. It is best to avoid WD40 for your locks as well, as it can gum your lock up and not lubricate your lock properly either.

Use With Care

The key to keeping your locks in good shape is using them with care. Locks are strained with constant daily usage which slowly wears them down. On top of it, applying an unnecessary force upon it would not do it any favors. Avoid slamming the door and using the lock roughly overall.

Make Sure Door Alignment Is Correct

Along with taking good care of your lock, you need to keep your door maintained as well. A misaligned door exerts strain on its components, including the door lock. That in turn weakens the lock and is also a security hazard of its own. If you notice having to push or pull the door hard, signs of door rubbing, etc., then you should have it fixed by professionals promptly.

Do Not Delay Any Further; Get Your Lock Fixed And Keep Yourself And Your Loved Ones Safe

Faster Locksmith has dedicated 5 years on providing excellent door lock repair and door lock replacement services in Toronto. The security of your house is paramount and properly working locks play a big part in it. Whether it is repairing, replacing or maintaining your lock, we can help and ensure that your locks are working sturdily and keeping you and your loved ones safe.

Safeguard your property with our expert locksmith solutions. Get in touch with our approachable, knowledgeable team.