How to Tell That You Need to Replace Your Locks
One of the reasons that compels people to call 24-hour locksmiths like On The Spot Locksmiths is the discovery that their lock has failed to respond to the key that they usually use to open it. There are several warning signs that 'lock trouble' is on the way before that moment when you fail to open your own front door. This article discusses three of those early signs that may prompt you to replace your locks.
The Lock Jingles Inside
One of the signs that a lock is aging and may soon fail is when you hear it jingling (making light running sounds) when you are opening it. The lock may also feel loose when you insert the key into it. These are signs that the pins inside the lock have become old so they no longer stay in one place when the lock is open or closed.
Tarnish or Rust on the Lock
Take a close look at your lock. Has it lost its original shine? Are there any visible signs of rust on its exterior? If your answer is yes to any of those questions then your lock is growing old and needs to be replaced soon before intruders breach it. Visible signs of rust on a lock mean that the internal components may have already been compromised since moisture can take longer to evaporate inside a lock. This is because the internal parts are not directly exposed to the elements like sunlight, and the thickness of the lock makes it harder for heat to reach inside the lock.
You Take Longer to Open the Lock
If you used to take a few moments to get the lock open but that duration has increased, then your lock has started exhibiting signs of aging and should be replaced. The delay in opening may be caused by a shift in the alignment of the internal components. That shift may be a result of warping due to metal fatigue. All metals wear out and the lock may have reached that stage.
None of the signs above are, on their own, definitive indicators that your lock needs to be changed, but when a combination of those signs becomes apparent at the same time, then you can almost be certain you need to change that lock. You may need to call an emergency locksmith to troubleshoot your locks before advising you whether to change them or just service them by lubricating them, for example.