Archive for the ‘Locksmiths’ Category


Front Door Won’t Unlock

Friday, December 6th, 2013

Front Door Won’t Unlock - Locksmiths

Not being able to get into your own house for one reason or another can be extremely frustrating. When your home becomes inaccessible because a lock won’t give in, you want to find a solution as quickly as possible. What can you do if your front door won’t unlock? You can look for a locksmith or you can try to fix the problem by yourself. Let’s see what options you have.

Causes and Solutions

1. Cause: Dirt Accumulation

One possible situation you may be confronted with is this: you try to open the door and the key simply sticks. All you have is a firmly fixed door and the key, which seems useless in your hands. First, you should make sure your lock is effectively lubricated. Dirt can build up over time and prevent your front door from being unlocked.

– Solution: Powdered Graphite

To solve the problem, you should apply powdered graphite. You can find powdered graphite in the form of aerosol spray. If you haven’t bought any for this purpose, you can use the powdered graphite from a simple pencil.

2. Cause: Cold Weather

Cold weather is another possible cause why your front door won’t unlock.

– Solution: Lighter

If the door lock is covered in ice, what you should do is remove all the ice from the exterior part of the lock first. Then you should try heating the lock using a lighter or a match.

3. Cause: Roughened key or edges

Sometimes keys become rougher and that is why they don’t function properly anymore.

– Solution: Nail file

In this case, you could try using a nail file to solve the problem. The nail file, which is that long thin piece of metal used for shaping nails, can shape your keys as well.

Need Help?

If you tried all the solutions above and none of them functioned, TalkLocal can help you get into contact with professional locksmiths who will address your problem and solve it in no time. Our service is prompt and free.

Mailbox Lock Broken

Thursday, November 21st, 2013

Mailbox Lock Broken - Locksmiths

Photo courtesy of

Is your mailbox lock broken? Numerous homeowners are forced to deal with defective mailbox locks that put their privacy on the line and cause many headaches.

Is there a time- and cost-efficient way to fix a mailbox lock that is broken? Keep reading to identify the fastest solution to your broken mailbox lock.

Check the Guidelines Provided by the United States Postal Service

Did you know that it is illegal to pry open your own mailbox? In addition, mail carriers won’t deliver your correspondence if your box is unsecured or unlocked.

If you have lost the key to your mailbox, the United States Postal Service advises you to contact the owner of the building that you live in, or your superintendent, and ask them for a new key.

Mailbox Lock Broken?

To avoid unsatisfactory results and legal complications, call your building manager and explain the present situation. They will most likely decide to call a competent locksmith who could provide professional repairs.

If your mailbox is shared with all the neighbors from your street, you could also contact representatives from your local post office, who will offer you the services of a maintenance specialist.

In this case, you just have to tell them the CBU (central box unit) location and your box number. The maintenance expert will fix your broken lock or install a new one and give you a new set of keys.

DIY Project or Locksmith Services?

If somehow you managed to break the key inside your mailbox lock, you could try to remove it by using paperclips or a broken key extractor. However, this process is tedious and extremely difficult. Moreover, keep in mind that a DIY project could get you into a lot of trouble, especially if the mailbox belongs to your local post office and is not your property.

Ask for Help

Mailbox lock broken? If you want to solve this frustrating problem as soon as possible, discuss your options with a respectable locksmith in your area, specialized in defective lock and key mechanisms. Use TalkLocal, a free service, to be connected with dependable, competent professionals who provide high-quality services in your area.

How to Fix a Broken Mailbox Key

Tuesday, November 12th, 2013

How to Fix a Broken Mailbox Key - Locksmiths

When it comes to keys, the most unpleasant thing that can happen besides losing your key is to break one off inside a lock. If it’s your mailbox key, and not your house key, you’ll probably be less worried, but you’ll still need to fix it as soon as possible to have access to your mail. Here are a few tips on how to fix a broken mailbox key.

Call a Locksmith

If your mailbox key breaks inside the lock, the first thing that comes to mind is to call a locksmith. But before doing that, you can try to solve the matter on your own to save time and money.

Use a Broken Key Extractor

A broken key extractor is a tool specially designed for extracting keys from locks. There are professional key extractor sets that can be pricy, but you need the simple version of the tool, which is affordable and can be found in most tool shops.

Use a Hooked Piece of Metal

If you don’t have a broken key extractor, you could try using a hooked piece of metal, such as a paper clip or a piece of wire. Your goal is to insert the wire into the key shaft and seize the ragged side of your mailbox key. Once you manage to do that, start wiggling it out, and then use some pliers to pull it out completely.

The piece of metal you use needs to fit inside the opening. If it’s not strong enough, you won’t be able to pull out the key. Also, if your key has only one ragged side, it will be more difficult to grab it than if both sides are uneven.

Use Some Lubricant

To make things easier, try squeezing some lubricant into the key shaft. It will help you pull out the broken mailbox key if you can grab it with the hooked piece of metal.

Use a Magnet

You can also try using a magnet to pull the broken mailbox key out. However, you need a strong magnet, and this will probably only work with a very small key.

If none of the above methods helps you fix your broken mailbox key, you should consider calling a locksmith. TalkLocal can find a local professional right away to get the problem solved. It’s fast and free.

Deadbolt Repair Cost

Monday, October 28th, 2013

Deadbolt Repair Cost - Locksmiths

Deadbolt repair cost is not particularly cheap. It depends on the kind of deadbolt that you have installed. If you installed a cheaper variety in the first place, the cost of any repairs may be higher. The services offered may also depend on where you live and the time it will take professionals to repair the deadbolt.

Deadbolts are an important security feature of your home. There are three grades of deadbolt, and you should not settle for anything less than Grade 2 deadbolts. Grade 3 deadbolts are easy to pry open and are not secure against criminals.

Average Deadbolt Repair Cost

Generally, locksmiths charge anything from $35 to $50 per service call. They also charge $15 to $35 to install a new deadbolt. This will all depend on whether the door and jamb is already bored and cored. If so, the locksmith’s job will be easier, so the cost will consequently be lower.

If the task is more complicated and takes more time, you could be looking at $50 to $75 for the service call and $50 to $75 per hour for the time that it takes to install the new deadbolt.

In general, if you bought the cheaper deadbolt, the repair will probably take more time, meaning more expense. In total, it may cost you about $100 for the deadbolt repair cost. Although this is money well spent, as home security should always be a priority, buying top quality deadbolts in the first place can save you money over the longer term.

Additionally, if you live in a remote area, the charges may be higher due to steeper service fees. In any case, get estimates from a few locksmiths before making any decisions.

Need a Locksmith?

Contact TalkLocal today and we can connect you with up to three locksmith within minutes! It is our priority to assist you with your every service need, so call us today!

Home Security Plan Development Guide

Wednesday, October 23rd, 2013

Home Security Plan Development Guide - Locksmiths

Living in a safe neighborhood doesn’t guarantee that you won’t be a victim of crime. Even safe neighborhoods are not entirely free of crime. That’s why a home security plan is important to keep you and your family safe, wherever you live. High-quality locks and keys should be a part of your home security plan.

Those are givens, but what else? Here we will tackle the task of making your home safer.

1. Fix a Budget

A good home security plan will probably include new purchases and upgrades that will cost you some money. You need to create a sensible budget for your expenses, even if you are planning the most basic home security measures.

2. Check Your Doors and Windows

Make sure that the hinges on your doors and windows are not broken and are secure. Make sure they are kept locked and are made of high-quality, sturdy material. Additionally, you should install strike plates correctly. Consider installing a deadbolt on your door.

3. Look at the Fences or Gates

If there are holes in your fences and gates, have them repaired. If you don’t have fences or gates, put some in place. These structures will deter animals and criminals from entering your property and will help to keep you safe. Gates and fences also offer you some privacy.

4. Decide upon Security Devices

Look at what you currently have and determine if you need more. Many people install alarms and sensors on their properties. Law enforcement agencies always recommend installation of home security systems for your protection and peace of mind.

5. Illuminate Your Home

Strategic lighting is known to deter criminals from your property because it indicates that people are awake inside. Consider putting lighting in your yard and keeping some lights on inside your home at night.

Help is on the Way

TalkLocal can help you find professionals to assist you in developing a home security plan. Give us a call today!

Tricks of A Burglar’s Trade – The Inside Story

Tuesday, October 15th, 2013

Tricks of A Burglar’s Trade – The Inside Story - Locksmiths

How do you get into the mindset of a thief? The answer to that question will help you protect your property more effectively and keep your home safer. So we took to the streets to obtain some interesting insights from some “industry professionals” – actual burglars!

It wasn’t easy, but we gathered together the most consistent answers from various sources to get to know how most burglars think.

We’re going to share the tricks of a burglar’s trade with you, from the perspective of a professional! Meet “Pat”, your friendly neighborhood burglar.

So, what am I looking for before I decide to break into your property? How do I break in, and what am I looking for once I get inside?

What I Look For

First, I get the low-down on the neighborhood before choosing a property. I work between 8am and 11am, sometimes dressed as a cable or phone repair man, so I can avoid looking suspicious.

> High fences protecting your privacy – these keep nosy neighbors away so I can easily get on with my work.

> High vegetation like trees or shrubbery are perfect for hiding me. Even better if the trees and shrubs cover your windows, so nobody sees me breaking in.

> Toys and other equipment in the yard – If I see kids’ toys I know there’s a mom living here. That’s great news, because I know there will be plenty of jewelry to plunder!

> When I need a closer look at a home, I may even post a flier on the door, which lets me see if you have a burglar alarm installed.

How I Break into Your Home

> First, I’ll knock on the front door to see if anyone is home. If someone answers, I’ll just whip out a convincing story and move along.

> If no one answers, I’ll check the front and back doors to see if one is unlocked. You’ll be surprised at the number of homeowners who fail to secure their doors when they leave the house. Many will leave a key under a mat or somewhere equally obvious.

> Of course, I do have my own tools – my trusty crowbar can easily shatter your windows.

> However, I do have a one-minute time limit at this stage. If you’ve made it difficult and I can’t gain access within sixty seconds, I’ll just move on to the next house.

What I do Once I’m Inside

> First, I head to the master bedroom to look for jewelry, cash, or other valuables. This is where most of the best loot can be found, and I’m always amazed that so much is left in obvious places such as drawers or under the bed.

> Having checked under that bed, I’ll make a final run through your closets.

> Pills fetch good money, so my next stop is the bathroom, where I can help myself to any of your prescriptions.

> Now it’s downstairs to search the kitchen and living room. Here I’m looking for high ticket items – electronics such as laptops and iPads – along with car keys, credit cards, and any personal information you’ve left lying around.

> When I’m done looting your home, I call for my driver. When he arrives we load up the van with your stuff and simply drive away.

> Your house has been cleared out, but once the van’s loaded we’re off to the next victim – it’s a never ending circle of crime.

Believe it or not, this whole process takes just eight to twelve minutes!

Usually my job is easy, but there is a lot you can do to deter me and my many colleagues. The most obvious step is to invest in a top quality security system. If I see one of these in your home, then I’ll just walk on by and look for another target.

You could also leave the TV, stereo, and lights on when you’re not at home. I know that lots of people do this even when the property is empty, but I’m not going to take that chance. Also, I don’t like dogs, and the larger the animal the more likely we are to look elsewhere.

So now that I’ve let you in on a few trade secrets, you can make plans to deter me and my fellow crooks by checking out TalkLocal. TalkLocal will connect you with up to three quality locksmiths in your area in just minutes.

Guest written by Kevin Raposo. Kevin covers issues related to home security, safety, and crime.  When he’s not writing, he is usually playing his guitar & drums.

Make Doors and Locks a Key Part of Your Home Security Plan

Monday, September 23rd, 2013

Make Doors and Locks a Key Part of Your Home Security Plan - Locksmiths

Written by Brian Jones, guest contributor

The typical homeowner may have a mental image of burglars sneaking in through windows in the dead of night. According to FBI research, however, that concept is off-base. The majority of home break-ins happen during daytime with burglars entering through a primary door.

To address this reality, homeowners can take a number of steps to bolster their security, starting with doors and locks.

Common residential doors are no match for burglars. Most are constructed with particleboard and a plywood skin. They are easily split or shattered with only a screwdriver or a small crowbar. Specially designed all-steel security doors, on the other hand, are far more resistant to break-ins.

A residential security door is made from a steel frame of crisscrossed bars and armored steel plate. Other components, such as hinges and fasteners, are made of tamper-proof stainless steel.

Also, you should install a steel doorjamb or reinforce the existing one with steel jackets that are secured to the underlying house frame.

Strong doors are useless without high-quality locks that are installed properly. Ninety percent of locks that locksmiths see in homes are low-grade products that are easily disabled by picking, twisting or brute force.

Installing a deadbolt on every exterior door, including doors between the garage and living area, is a critical step in preventing a burglary. Keep in mind these specific characteristics and installation tips:

> Use only locks with an ANSI grade 1 rating.

> If possible, use double-cylinder deadbolts.

> The deadbolt must have a minimum of a one-inch throw.

> The lock’s striker plate must be solid steel and be secured through the doorjamb into the house framing with three-inch screws, or longer.

> Locks with hardened steel, beveled casings resist twisting with a pipe wrench.

> The best locks have features such as anti-saw pins, anti-drill chips and keys that cannot be duplicated at the local hardware store.

Proper doors and locks combined with modern home security systems give your home its best chance to resist intrusion by thieves. Here are just a few of the features can expect from the best electronic security systems.

> Monitoring for intruders using infrared motion detectors

> Surveillance cameras scanning the inside and outside of your home

> Security alerts and remote access through a web-enabled device, such as a tablet or smartphone

Don’t be complacent about the security of your home. Upgrade your doors and locks and consider the benefits of supplementing them with a state-of-the-art security system.

To beat the odds, start by being proactive. Use TalkLocal to be connected with high-quality locksmiths and security experts in your area.

Using Cam Locks

Wednesday, September 18th, 2013

Using Cam Locks - Handyman

Security-conscious people have always been looking for new, simple, accessible, highly effective methods to protect their valuable belongings. Some of them rely on cam locks to secure their assets. Cam locks are very popular, inexpensive locking devices that are easy to install and easy to use.

The first prototype was invented in 1985 in Ontario, Canada. These days, buyers have access to a generous selection of models that could be installed by any homeowner or by locksmiths specialized in various household maintenance assignments.

How to use a cam lock

This locking device has 2 main components: a base, displaying a keyhole, and a tongue or long tailpiece (the actual cam). When using cam locks, you might notice that the cam makes a rotation of up to 180 degrees every single time the key is pushed inside the base.

Despite the fact that they serve the same purpose and display similar features, one can easily find a wide range of cam locks on the market, available in different finishes, sizes, and styles to meet the specific needs and demands of different clients. You should know that there are two main types of cam locks: standard keyed cam locks and more sophisticated combo cam locks, functioning based on a combination dial code.

This last type of cam lock is usually used to secure lockers, and it is highly appreciated because owners don’t have to carry around their key and utilize it to unlock their cabinets.

When to use a cam lock

Cam locks are the ideal alternative at hand for people who want to secure their cabinets, desks, trophy cases, old windows, school lockers, electrical panels, and other items in a cost- and time-effective manner. Using cam locks will prevent theft and unauthorized access effectively, as long as the locking mechanism is flawless and the device functions properly.

One can choose the best cam locks based on price tag, special features, and also according to the particularities of the area that needs to be secured. Brass or steel cam locks are ideal for various indoor applications, while products manufactured from durable, highly resistant materials like galvanized steel are perfect for outdoor usage.

When to ask for help

Generally speaking, using cam locks shouldn’t pose any problems. However, if you want to find the very best locking devices, rely on expert guidance provided by skilled locksmiths. Find the best ones in your area by using TalkLocal, your free connection to the most highly-qualified professionals in your area.

Key Is Stuck in Lock

Wednesday, September 4th, 2013

Key Is Stuck in Lock - Locksmiths

What’s the worst thing that could happen to you after a long, exhausting day of work? You could get home late and notice that your key is stuck in lock. Unfortunately, this is a common problem experienced by numerous homeowners. Most of them are always taken by surprise by more or less complex locksmith problems requiring professional services.

Assuming that you are forced to handle this situation in the middle of the night, could you come up with a great solution on your own, without contacting a locksmith? In most cases, the answer is yes.

Solve your problem fast and effortlessly by applying a few simple tips

1)    You come home from a late dinner with friends and you realize that your key is stuck in lock. So, what’s next? Whatever you do, do not panic. Make sure your key is in a vertical position. Gently turn your key to the left and to the right inside the lock a few times; then try to remove it slowly. Don’t apply too much pressure, as you could easily break your key inside the lock.

2)    If the key is still stuck, try to jiggle it a bit.

3)    Rely on a high-quality lubricant and apply it inside the lock. Call someone who could come to the rescue and bring you a superior, long-lasting, truly affordable silicon or petroleum-based lubricant, like Penetrene, for instance, used by locksmiths to address this type of problem. After applying the lubricant, you should be able to remove your key in the blink of an eye.

4)    Once you manage to get inside the house, dig a little deeper to identify the nature of your problem. Was it caused by a faulty key or a defective lock? When in doubt, contact a locksmith who could provide the best answer to this question in a timely manner while helping you avoid further unpleasant surprises for a long period of time.

Find the best locksmith in your area

Are you having a hard time trying to understand the particularities of your lock-and-key mechanism? Is it virtually impossible for you to get inside the house when your key is stuck in lock? In this case, you obviously need expert help coming from a competent locksmith.

Find the best professionals operating in your area with help from TalkLocal, your trusted source of fresh, accurate information. Always consider your locksmith needs and concerns a top priority and pay the right price for first-class services and maintenance work to minimize safety risks.

Door Knob Latch Stuck

Tuesday, August 27th, 2013

Door Knob Latch Stuck - Locksmiths

Numerous homeowners who understand the basic lock-and-key mechanism choose to handle common, simple locksmith problems on their own. Armed with a lot of patience and the right set of tools, they open doors, install locks, and try to replace defective components. But do you have what it takes to handle a door knob latch stuck type of emergency situation in record time, without compromising the whole system?

How to solve your problem fast

A door latch can stop functioning properly for numerous reasons, including sudden atmospheric changes. If you are dealing with this problem, stay calm and follow these 4 simple steps to obtain the desirable results in record time.

1)    Try to jiggle your door

If you find your door knob latch stuck inside your door’s strike hole, try to jiggle the door a bit, in order to unlock it fast without relying on any tools or special products.

2)    Remove the door knob and clean your latch system

Here’s another helpful tip: Remove your door knob and take a closer look at the door latch mechanism. Its functionality could be compromised by a significant amount of dirt or other impurities. Clean it using water, let it dry, and then reinstall it properly.

3)    Buy and apply a first-class lubricant

If the problem persists, follow a different approach: Purchase and apply high-quality, silicon- or petroleum-based lubricant, perfect for this kind of job. Some homeowners choose to utilize WD-40, while others rely on vegetable oil to solve their problem. Before applying the substance, it is advisable to contact a skilled locksmith in your area and ask for his opinion on this matter. Afterward, carefully lubricate all of the components of your locking system. This should be the end of your “door knob latch stuck” problem.

4)    Simply remove and replace your door knob latch

If high-quality lubricant didn’t do the trick, this probably means that you should contact the best locksmith in your area and ask him or her to replace your door knob latch.

Find the right locksmith

You could always choose to conduct a DIY project, buy the new door knob yourself from almost any hardware store, and install it using a screwdriver. However, in case you would rather opt for professional services guaranteeing spectacular, long-term results, count on TalkLocal, your primary source of information to find the most reputable locksmith experts who are just one call away. Always solve your locksmith problems in a timely manner to avoid significant security threats that could disrupt your balance and put your safety on the line.