Broken key extraction

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.

If you need a local locksmith to come and extract a broken key from your lock then contact Re-Entry-Locksmiths today – 01765 451 453

External Door Locks

Choosing the right lock for your external door can be quite a daunting task as there are so many different types available in todays market. Therefore, our team at Re-Entry-Locksmiths have put together a guide on the 5 best most commonly used external door locks in the UK.

Deadbolts – Deadbolts are a heavy-duty lock that is separate from the door handle. It works in two parts, a bolt fitted into the door and the other part fits into a whole in the wall so that once lock the blot will come out of the door and into the wall. Once locked the door will not be able to be opened and it will be exceedingly difficult to force! If properly installed this is an extremely effective security measure.

Keyed Locks – If your door is not suitable for a dead lock then a keyed lock is the next best option. Keyed locks are commonly seen on uPVC doors, they often come fitted into the doors when purchased, however it is worth having the locks on uPVC doors to snap safe locks. This will prevent burglars form using the lock snapping technique to gain entry to your home making it much more safe and secure.

Electronic Locks – This type of lock is fairly new to the market and it doesn’t require the use of a traditional key. Instead, these locks require a passcode to be entered into a keypad or a key fob, some can even use a smart phone! This is a more high-tech external door lock but is becoming increasingly more common particularly on new builds.

Door Handle Locks – This is the most common type of lock for homes in the UK. This lock when used alongside a deadbolt is extremely effective.

Combination Locks – This Type of lock comes in tow types, mechanical and electronic. The mechanical lock works with a twist dial or a push button, and the electronic locks use either a password or a pin similar to a smart phone.

If you would like advice on the best locks for your property or you require your locks changing or upgrading contact Re-Entry-Locksmiths today – 01765 451 453

Most burglaries in the UK happen during the moths of October to January. ADT Fire & Security statistics show that more than 79% of us do not have adequate security measures in place in order to help protect our homes from intruders.

The dark nights are getting closer each day and the cover of darkness make almost every home the ideal target for a burglar. No time of the year is good when it comes to being burgled but with Christmas just around the corner this has to be one of the worst!

So, our team at Re-Entry-Locksmiths have put together a few helpful tips in order to help people better secure their homes this winter in the hope of preventing burglaries.

Security Tips

Valuables On Show – As an added security measure lots of us often have lights on timers in order to create the impression that someone is home when the property is in fact vacant. This measure does work well as a deterrent however you do have to be mindful of what you are showing off. Make sure blinds and curtains are shut in rooms in which you have the lights come on, this will help prevent a potential burglar having a clear view of what valuable you have and also the layout of your home.

Calendars – This may seem like a strange tip for a home security measure however if you have a family calendar on display this can be the perfect tool for a burglar to use to know exactly when your home will be vacant and how long for! If you do have a calendar it is worth moving it so it cannot be viewed via a window from the outside of your property.

Letterbox Fishing – Having a cage fitted on the back of your letter box you will be able to prevent thieves from being able to steel valuables such as car keys and wallets and even gain entry to your home via your letterbox.

Digital Security – If you have a digital alarm installed at your property it is important that you keep it clean, it wont be difficult for a burglar to guess the alarm code if the digits used are clearly visible!

Bathroom Awareness – From the outside of a property it is not hard to figure out which room is the bathroom as they all have frosted glass, so if a burglar sees a bathroom light on but the rest of the property is dark they will see it as a good opportunity to quickly get in and out of your home with as much as they can. So, if you are using the bathroom at night make sure you leave a couple of other lights on as an extra deterrent.

Double Locking – No matter how secure your door lock is, one lock is never enough! Burglars can easily check if a door has a dead lock installed by simply using their foot, if the door moves just a couple of millimetres then they will know you don’t have one and that access to your property will be much easier.

If you need more information on how you can better improve the security measure at your home to help prevent burglaries or you would like to implement any security measures mentioned above then contact Re-Entry-Locksmiths today – 01765 451 453

About Re-Entry Locksmiths

Re-Entry Locksmiths will not charge a call out fee and aim to be with you within the hour. We are a reliable and professional team and our intention is to carry out the work quickly and professionally. We work 24 hours a day over bank holidays, weekends and other public holidays.

We provide dependable locksmith services for residential and commercial properties.  We also provide auto locksmiths services for those that have lost or misplaced their car keys. 

Re-Entry Locksmiths are equipped to deal with difficult situations, and we have the resources available to help you with any lockout situation.

Services we offer

Anti Snap Lock Installation

People have their locks changed for many different reasons. Our qualified locksmiths can provide you with the most up to date information on the different types of anti snap locks that are available.

In the last ten years, there has been a significant rise in the lock snapping technique used on euro cylinder locks.  The lock snapping technique is a favourite amongst burglars at the minute.  They use a significant amount of force onto the lock which then snaps the cylinder in two.  This is a quick and easy method and you do not have to be an expert to carry out this technique.

What are Anti Snap Locks

Anti-snap locks are high security euro lock cylinders.  These locks have been designed and tested to protect against the lock snapping method.

The anti-snap cylinder lock, provides a worthy security solution, combining all the features of the euro cylinder lock whilst producing higher levels of security.

The anti snap cylinder has a line cut into the cylinder body.  This line is known as a sacrificial snap line. When burglars apply force to lock, the cylinder will automatically snap along this line. But don’t worry as the actual mechanism stays intact so your door will remain locked.

If you are uncertain about which locks you have fitted in your home then please contact Re-Entry Locksmiths today.  We can visit your property and inspect the locks you have in place.  If they do need upgrading then we can talk to you about the most secure locks that we have available and explain how they work.

Replacement Locks and Lock upgrades

Old Locks – When locks get old or tired due to over usage then it’s only a matter of time before they break.  Or maybe they may start to become more difficult to lock and unlock.  If this starts to happen then you will need to think about the security implications this will have on your property. Re-Entry Locksmiths can change over any locks that need upgrading.   

Lost or Misplaced Keys – The most common reason for locksmith call outs are misplaced or lost keys.  Or keys snapping inside the barrel.   All these reasons are easily resolved. Our locksmiths can remove the previous barrel and replace it with a new one.   We will also provide you with a brand new set of keys for your new lock.  

Moved House – If you have recently bought a new house then the first thing you need to do is replace the locks.  You do not know how many people have got spare keys to your new property. So people you do not know can easily gain entry to your new home. Re-Entry Locksmiths can change your locks and also check the window locks to make sure that they are fitted properly.

Re-Entry Locksmiths would be happy to do a security check on your home and offer you the latest security advice available.  We can talk you through the latest locks that we supply and fit. 

Biometrics and Smart Locks.

Biometric locks – are locks that allow access based on a unique body feature of the person opening the lock. This can either mean your fingerprint or your retina. The human fingerprints are unique for every individual person. Knowing this, the biometric locks can identify and separate various users of the lock.  Biometric locks and devices can usually have fingerprint access and keypad access. If you do have both , you will input a code in the keypad and also use your fingerprint.  

Smart locks – A smart lock is a safe and simple way of gaining access to your home using your smart phone. Using your smart phone, you can lock and unlock your doors.  You can also offer other people wireless access from a key fob or a smart phone.

Some smart lock systems have cameras which allows you to see who is coming into your home or business.  Other brands of smart locks allow you send encrypted ‘virtual’ keys via email or SMS so you can allow people to enter your home when you are not there.

UPVC Repair and Maintenance

Re-Entry locksmiths specialise in the repair of UPVC and composite door locks in Harrogate and surrounding areas.

Our qualified team have years of experience in maintaining multi-point locking mechanisms on UPVC doors, composite doors and patio doors.  Not only do we maintain these type of door locks but we can also provide security lock upgrades on UPVC and composite doors.   We can also fit anti-snap locks, TS007 3 star locks which are the best in British Standard locks.

Re Entry Locksmiths also repair, maintain and upgrade window locks for Harrogate residential and commercial clients.  If your window locks are faulty or broken then we can upgrade and replace these for you.  We can do repairs for all major window manufacturers and on different styles of windows such as wood framed, aluminium or uPVC.

Emergency Locksmith

Re-Entry Locksmiths provide a 24 hour service for any emergencies in the Harrogate, Ripon and North Yorkshire area.   Our teams are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  Our emergency locksmiths are here to help you unlock your doors and get you back into your home.

Auto Locksmith

Loosing your car keys can cause you a lot of stress!   Or maybe you have managed to lock your keys in the car.  Whatever the reason, Re-Entry locksmiths can assist you 24/7.  Our emergency auto locksmith services are being offered throughout Harrogate, Ripon and North Yorkshire. 

Our locksmiths can provide locks and keys for all vehicle models.  We can also re- program keys, replace car keys, or repair and replace your car locks.  We make sure that we are there within the hour to help you get back into your vehicle safely and securely.

Call Re-Entry-Locksmiths now if you need help on 07549 918899 and one of our locksmiths will be with you, within the hour.

brisant locks installed Harrogate

It is essential that we keep our external door locks in good working condition, in order to best ensure that our properties are kept as secure as can be.

If you find that your external locks have a problem, then it should be something that you consider repairing or replacing as soon as possible. Some problems with locks only require a simple solution that you can probable fix yourself with little effort, however some problems are a lot more complex and will need the skills and expertise of a qualified locksmith.

Lock Problems

Broken Key In Lock – This issue often happens completely out of the blue with no prior warning signs, making it even more frustrating when it happens. The first thing to remember is to not to try and unlock or lock the door with the broken key, this will only make matters worse by pushing the key further into the lock and even risk causing damage to the lock itself. You can attempt to remove the key yourself with a pair of needle nose plyers if you can see enough of the key sticking out of the lock. If you were unsuccessful or not enough of the key is visible then you will need the help of a professional locksmith who will have the tools and skills to safely extract the key without causing damage to your existing lock.

Stiff Difficult to Open Lock – This is a problem that is usually caused by a build up of dust and dirt inside the locking mechanism. You can try to free it up by using a silicone or graphite-based lubricant, simply apply the spry to the lock the try turning the key a few times. When trying this method you should never use an oil based lubricant such as WD-40 as it will only provide a short term fix, the oil in the solution will eventually cause the lock to become clogged. 

Difficult to Unlock/Lock UPVC Door – If you are having problems locking or unlocking your door while it is closed, but the lock works fine while it is in the open position then it is more than likely just and alignment issue that you are dealing with. This can be quite a tricky fix if you don’t know what you are doing, however your local locksmith will be able to quickly resolve this problem. If it turns out it is not an alignment issue, then this will be something that your local locksmith will have to diagnose and fix accordingly.

Key Difficult to Insert– Well in this situation there are a few simple things that need to be ruled out, firstly, are you using the correct key, this is a mistake that most of us will have made at least once in our lives! Second thing to rule out is a badly cut key, try an older key in the door to see if that works with out issues. If none of the keys to your property work, then it is likely a problem with the locking mechanism and not the keys. You will need to call out your local locksmith to come and diagnose the problem and carry out the necessary work to fix it.

If you are having problems with the locks on your external doors then, contact Re-Entry-Locksmiths today – 01765 451 453

Well it’s been another busy month working with homeowners and businesses throughout Harrogate, Ripon and North Yorkshire. Here at ReEntry Locksmiths we have seen and worked on a number of different needs from door locks, windows and commercial entry systems.

Here are a few highlights from a busy month.

Forced Entry Harrogate

Gained entry to a failed UCEM mechanism today by manipulating the failed mechanism into the open position so it could be replaced.  Another locksmith walked away saying they couldn’t open it so this made us even more determined to to get this right for the customer and as you can see from the image below, we forced entry and helped the customer get back into their home.

Forced entry to a home in Harrogate after a previous locksmith told the customer it couldn’t be opened

Wetherby Garage Door Lock Fixed

This garage door hadn’t been opened for over 6 years and when the customer recently passed his driving test he wanted to start using it again. The old lock had become rusted and unusable so we removed the lock, cleaned the area and then replaced with a brand lock giving the customer the use of their garage door back.

Garage door lock removed and a new one installed.

We were called out to a customer that wanted to upgrade their existing locks as the old locks were not fit for purpose.

Talking over with the customer we decided to go for the 3* Sold Secure locks that are anti-snap and would serve as a deterrent to any would-be burglars in the Harrogate and Ripon areas.

As one of the premier locksmiths in the area we know a thing or two about the fitting the right locks for the right doors and can help customers understand the best locks to prevent break ins.

The Brisant Ultion 3* Sold Secure comes with a £1000 guarantee if proven that entry has been gained by lock snapping so as you can see they are pretty sure it cannot be done meaning you can relax in peace.

However, if ever a would-be burglar did gain entrance to the home, I’m not sure they would get passed this big boy anyway!

If you live in the Harrogate and Ripon areas and are looking to upgrade your locks, then why not speak to ReEntry Locksmiths today and we can provide you with a free quote for upgrades across your door locks and window locks.

It’s been a busy period over Christmas with Re Entry Locksmiths working through the whole period helping people get back in to their homes, businesses and vehicles. Many of our local Harrogate Customers have had their door locks and window locks upgraded, which in light of the spate of local burglaries in the area is a good move!

vehicle locksmith Harrogate

Below are two pictures of us working to get customers back in to their homes and vehicles. As you can see, it’s a delicate process, but as a highly trained locksmiths in Harrogate, we know how to break the locks without actually breaking them!

With the increase of burglaries across Ripon and North Yorkshire, here at Re-Entry Locksmiths, Horrogate, we thought we would take some time to highlight some of the method’s criminals use to get into your house. We are also going to provide you with some common sense solutions on how to prevent this from happening to you and your loved ones.

Your average burglar is likely to be someone who is desperate to create some quick cash for themselves, whether that be to feed a drug addiction, or just funding their life of crime. This means that they are likely to be in a hurry, not very well equipped, and opportunistic. Therefore a sloppy or haphazard approach will mean they are likely to leave evidence, or if you have taken measures be unlikely to gain entry.

​1. By the back door.

An increasingly common modus operandi (MO) for domestic burglary is the europrofile lock technique. The use of this has drastically risen in Britain over the last five years, principally due to the manufacturers of new housing using cheap locks in their doors. The suspect takes a set of mole grips and places them over the lock barrel. With a turn, a bump and a snap, the bolt in the door lock shatters, rendering it inoperative. The door, handle and lock appear undamaged on a cursory inspection. The suspect then can gain access. This is a fantastic reason to make sure your home security is adequate: an experienced thief can get in this way, leaving minimal mess, in less than thirty seconds.

A more uncommon, but still utilised method is a bump key. A bump key is a special key that has been filed down to allow it to penetrate most of the pins in any particular lock, if it is whacked in to place. These have to be specially made, and won’t work on highly-secure locks. Nonetheless, it affords a thief a means of rapid access.

Forced entry is next on the list. Operational police officers have told us they’ve seen examples of thieves kicking through a thin external wall down between a shed mounted to the exterior of a building to gain access. But more common is attacking the front door itself, usually with a jemmy or crowbar. This technique literally uses physical force to prise the door open, but leaves a lot of mess, is noisy and attracts unwanted attention. Tell-tale marks that a jemmy has been used includes bent locks, a splintered or warped door-frame, and lots of debris.

The final, and crudest method for getting in the door, is brute force. It is surprisingly easy to kick a wooden door with a flimsy lock down, but again — it’s messy and noisy. Less so is a modern UPVC door, most of which have a steel core. In this case it is easier for a thief to kick a panel through in the bottom or top half of the door, and crawl through, rather than attacking the lock or frame directly. The most uncommon technique here would be the use of a battering ram. Operational officers report that this MO is extremity rare.

2. By The Window

Windows too can be attacked in a variety of ways. The most common MO here, after the sneak in, is to use some sort of tool to prise them open. Here, we’re looking at a crowbar or jemmy again. Thieves also use screwdrivers, to remove the beading from the frame, and literally pull the window out of its mounting. Sometimes, although more rarely, a glass cutting tool can also be used. These methods are fairly quiet and discreet as they cause minimal damage and aren’t immediately obvious on a casual inspection.
More brute force methods include the obvious brick through the window. The advantage for the thief here is that he doesn’t have to carry anything to the crime scene; a rock from the victim’s own patio is commonly used. The disadvantage is of course the noise made. It’s useful for forensic investigators, as using smashed windows as a point of entry usually means there is lots of nice jagged glass lying around that the thief might cut themselves on. If they do, they’ve incidentally left some fairly irrefutable trace evidence, in the form of their DNA at the crime scene. The destroyed window may even retain a few fingerprints, or tear a few fibres from the suspect’s clothes.

3. By The Roof Or Ram Raid

The final category here in our forced entry section encompasses every other way a thief could force access to your dwelling. Don’t worry about locking or shutting your first floor windows? Well you should, because thieves can and often do drag your wheelie bin to the side of your kitchen, climb onto your flat roof, and gain access that way.
Other ways burglars enter using less obvious methods include the removal of roof tiles, attacking masonry from a secluded spot with a hammer, chisel or industrial tools, or even digging elaborate tunnels! Determined thieves have even been known to dismantle chimneys to gain access to attic spaces or the body of houses.
As we said earlier, the possibilities for a determined thief are almost infinite. Although uncommon for residential houses, commercial premises are often ram raided, which involves driving a vehicle through a wall or shutter to gain access to a building. Again, it has even been known for minor explosives or welding equipment to be used to gain access.

Lessons

​As we explained earlier most burglars are likely to be an opportunist so the main preventative method is to ensure that those opportunities don’t exist for them. Keep windows secure, upgrade all your lock security, also a simple alarm system or CCTV system linked to your TV or smart device. If you have had a recent experience or have some advice for your community share them with us here on the comment section below. Stay Safe.