Most people aren’t aware that instead of changing their locks, there is a much better, and often cheaper solution – rekeying them. We’re sharing what it means to rekey a lock and when should you rekey your locks rather than changing them.
What Is Rekeying A Lock?
Changing a lock is self-explanatory; it’s simply replacing an old lock with a new one. But rekeying requires a little more explanation.
Rekeying a lock is changing the working key of the lock to a different key, without replacing the lock itself. You are changing the internal workings of the lock so that it works with a different key.
Simply put: you keep your same lock, but your old key will no longer unlock it.
Rekeying is an easier alternative to replacing the lock altogether, while still providing you with peace of mind knowing no one else has a key to your home.
How To Rekey A Door Lock
Rekeying is done by taking the lock apart and replacing some of the parts inside called “tumblers” or “key pins.”
A pin and tumbler lock contains a steel cutaway that holds a cylindrical plug, springs, and pins. The pins allow a specific key shape to turn in the lock. Only the key that matches the depth of the unique grooves in the lock will work.
So, to rekey your lock, you or a locksmith will start by disassembling the lock. Then you remove and replace the existing pins with new ones that match the new key’s configuration. The new pins and springs installed in the lock will only work with the new key, not the old.
However complicated this may sound, it’s a straightforward procedure that shouldn’t take too long given the right knowledge and tools.
Keep in mind that to rekey multiple locks, the locks have to be by the same brand or must share the same types of keyholes. If your key fits into one lock but won’t go into the other, it means their keyholes are different, and they cannot be matched.
If you want to rekey your locks, but you don’t know what kind of locks you have, or you have multiple brands of locks, hiring a locksmith to rekey is the best option.
Reasons to Rekey a Lock
There are several reasons why you might want to rekey your locks: for home security purposes or to consolidate the number of keys you need for your home.
Improving Your Home Security
New homeowners often rekey their locks after buying their home to make sure that they are the only ones with working keys.
With previously owned homes, keys have likely been duplicated for family members, friends, and service professionals. And in new homes, contractors have had access to the keys during the construction process.
So it’s a good idea to rekey your lock and ensure that you know exactly who has access to your home.
Reduce The Number Of Keys
Another reason for rekeying is to reduce the number of keys you need for your home.
It can happen slowly over time, with various owners, or the addition of different locks over time, but you can end up with a lot of different keys for your home. Having a single key to open all of your locks is much more convenient than having to deal with several keys.
The rekeying process can lighten a full key ring to a few essentials, taking up less space in your pocket or bag as well as less time spent searching and fiddling for the right one.
Changing or rekeying your door locks is one of the most important things you can do to maintain the safety and security of your home, family, and possessions.
Don’t assume you’re the only one who has keys to your home – be sure of it.