It is common for locksmiths to be called out to a key snapped off in a lock. They have to use a technique known as broken key extraction to safely remove the broken key from the lock. When this happens, it can be incredibly stressful for those involved as it can leave you either locked out or locked in your property.
Why Do Keys Snap In Locks?
There are many things that can cause a key to snap inside a lock, however, some of the main causes include:
- Over time the key has become damaged.
- The lock has become jammed or is not well lubricated.
- Standard keys are made from sot metals such as nickel and brass.
What Do You Do If Key Snaps In Lock?
Getting a broken key out of the lock should be a top priority as:
- Broken keys can cause damage to the locks.
- You could be left locked out or locked in your property.
- You may not be able to lock your door leaving your property unsecure.
How To Get A Snapped Key Out Of A Lock?
If you can see enough of the broken key sticking out of the lock then it may be possible for you to use a pair of needle nosed plyers or even a strong magnet if you have either of these items to hand to remove the broken key. However, when attempting to remove a broken key then you need to be incredibly carful as you could cause damage to the lock itself whist attempting to removing causing even more problems for yourself. The best thing you can do in this situation is call out your local locksmith. They will have the knowledge, tools and experience to carry out broken key extraction without causing any damage to the lock itself.
How To Prevent Broken Keys?
There are a couple of precautions you can take to try and prevent your key snapping off in your lock:
Keep Locks Lubricated – It is a good idea to lubricate your locks every six months. This will help keep them maintained and prevent them from getting stiff which can put extra strain on keys. It is important to remember that when lubricating a lock, never use an oil based lubricant such as WD-40 as this will eventually cause the lock to clog leading to much worse problems down the line.
New Keys – When a key is old, damaged or worn you should get it replaced immediately. Take your key to be cut and when you have a new set of keys dispose of all old keys so that they can’t be accidentally used.