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The Most Common Types of Door Lock Tampering

Trying to figure out if a burglar has been tampering with your lock can be difficult, especially when the signs are not obvious and you don’t know what you’re looking for.

It’s important to carefully examine your door lock if you suspect something doesn’t look right.

Whether you’re a homeowner or a tenant, door lock tampering is something you need to deal with as soon as you recognize the signs.

Here are the most common types of lock tampering you should pay attention to.

1. The Use of Brute Force

When a burglar uses brute force to attempt a break in, they will try to bash in the lock, drill through the deadbolt or kick down the door.

This method of breaking in may leave more obvious signs, such as paint scratches around the door frame, bent deadbolts, warped doors or frames and debris of wood in case you have a wooden door.

If one of these signs weren’t visible when you last locked your door, then it most likely means someone attempted a break in and you should report it to the police right away.

door lock tampering

2. Lock Picking

Another common type of door lock tampering is lock picking. This method is preferred by burglars because it usually leaves little to no signs.

Small tools, such as flat screwdrivers and a pick, are used to turn the lock and rake the pin tumblers.

Tiny, fresh scratch marks or the appearance of shiny metal around the keyhole, which are finer than those created by a key, are usually signs of lock picking.

In some countries, such as Japan, Hungary, or Poland, it’s illegal to own lock picking tools, and the penalties are quite strict.

3. Lock Bumping

Lock bumping is a technique that doesn’t require special equipment. It’s one of the fastest and easiest ways for burglars to break into a home.

At the same time, the process is quite noisy, so it can definitely draw the neighbours’ attention.

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This method can leave a few traces, such as nicks around the edges of the keyhole, or shiny metal around the edges, which is due to the forceful hitting.

Having a bump-resistant lock can protect you from this type of break-in, so it’s worth considering when you decide or need to change your door lock.

In the UK, the government created the British Standard TS007 Kitemark which rates locks from a bumping point of view from one to three stars. The higher the star rating, the greater the protection it offers.

Upgrade the Security of Your Home and Protect It Against Door Lock Tampering

If you notice any of these door lock tampering signs, it’s important you report your situation to the police as soon as possible. The second thing you need to do is call a locksmith so they can come and upgrade your locking system.

This is an essential step which will help you prevent potential break-ins because it’s going to deter intruders.

Whether you are looking for a quote or want to book a locksmith, feel free to contact us at 0800 0612 677 anytime you need our help.

We know time is of the essence in these cases, which is why we’re available 24/7 and we aim to get to you within 30 minutes, so you can rely on us whenever you have an emergency.

4 Innovative Devices Shaping the Future of Home Security

The full potential technology has when it comes to the future of home security is hard to grasp. After all, these are exciting times where new technological advancements and innovative devices are continually emerging on the market – promising to make life easier and safer.

Read more about four of these devices and the role they play in the future of home security in the following lines.

1. Video Doorbells

The newest generation of doorbells let you see who’s at the door – without having to get out of bed. In fact, you don’t even have to be at home.

Here are some of the exciting capabilities today’s generation of video doorbells provides:

  • real-time alerts users can receive via their phones – regardless of their location
  • wide viewing angles
  • HD video recording triggered by motion detection sensors
  • two-way audio which lets users answer the door as if they are always home
  • High-dynamic-range (HDR) video which shows sharp details even in bright and dark areas.

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2. Drone-Based Cameras

The Sunflower Home Awareness System, for instance, fuses outdoor sensors with an aerial drone-based camera to provide homeowners with a complete view of what’s going on all around their properties.

When the sensors spot unusual activity, the Flying Camera is deployed to the point of interest. From there, it sends a live video on users’ device to alert them.

What’s more, the drone will use differential GPS for precise navigation and include an advanced autopilot feature for autonomous flight.

The system has not yet been officially launched, but tests are scheduled for this year and those interested can sign up on their site to be notified of updates.

All in all, the Sunflower system provides a glimpse into a future where owners will be able to identify and investigate any unusual activity taking place anywhere on their property by leveraging drone technology.

3. Home Security Cameras with Facial Recognition

Facial recognition software can already be found in several of today’s smartphone new releases, but the technology can successfully be used for home security purposes, as well.

Netatmo’s smart indoor security camera named “Welcome,” for instance, recognizes faces and notifies users when children or elderly parents are home safely.

Also, it can easily be moved from one part of the home to another and alert homeowners when it detects a stranger’s face via a phone app. The alert comes with a picture of the stranger’s face and a video recording which allows users to know exactly what happens inside their homes.

Generally speaking, facial recognition software can change the face of overall home security by making room for a new way in which devices can “see” and understand what’s going on in our homes.

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4. Smart Door Locks

While we have to wait for certain innovative devices to become available, some are already on the market. In fact, they have been around for some time now.

Smart locks such as Yale’s digital smart lock range are among them. Here are just a few of the benefits of investing in a keyless system for your doors:

  • gain the freedom to efficiently secure your doors without the need to carry physical keys everywhere you go
  • unlock your door remotely
  • grant temporary access to guests, cleaners or other service providers via a phone app
  • keep track of who is going through your door and when – from anywhere you are.

If you want to upgrade your home security by having your doors outfitted with smart locks, know our trained locksmiths can assist you with that. Don’t hesitate to contact us for more information.

Should You Rekey or Replace Your Locks?

There’s nothing wrong with deciding to replace your locks entirely, but it’s important you know it’s not the only available option.

The information in this article is meant to help you gain a better understanding of a less-known alternative to changing your locks, namely rekeying. We’ve also included a few tips on how to figure out which option is more suitable for different situations you may experience.

So let’s get started.

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What’s the Difference?

There’s no need to go into detail when it comes to what it implies to change your entire door lock, as the process is quite self-explanatory.

Rekeying, on the other hand, is a procedure homeowners tend to be less familiar with. In a nutshell, to rekey means to utilize the existing lock body, but readjust its internal functioning so it works with a new key.

Simply put, you keep the same lock, but the old key will no longer operate it. It’s important to mention the vast majority of locks have a built-in option to be rekeyed.

Pros:

  • Cost-effective. Compared to replacing a lock entirely, rekeying is generally more inexpensive because it uses the existing lock body. You mainly pay for labour, not parts.

Cons:

  • Rekeying doesn’t upgrade the security of your locks. For instance, if you have a mortice lock installed and you rekey it, you will still have a mortice lock. In this regard, rekeying is far more limited than changing your locks (in which case, you have full freedom to choose the level of upgrade you want).

When to Rekey and when to Replace Your Locks

If you’re satisfied with the overall performance and brand of your current locks, but you want to make sure old keys will no longer work to operate it, rekeying is an excellent, cost-effective option.

There are a few cases when you’d want that, such as:

  1. You’ve recently misplaced or lost a set of keys to your home and you want to eliminate any potential risk of someone using them to break in.
  2. You’ve moved and want to ensure you have full control and knowledge of who has access to your new home or apartment.
  3. You want to deny access to your home of someone who already has a key to it.

On the other hand, changing your locks may be the way to go in case:

  1. You’ve decided to take advantage of new technological advancements by making the transition to a keyless system and have smart locks installed.
  2. You’re not pleased with the design, brand or condition of the locks. This usually happens in the case of new homeowners who have recently purchased a property and notice the locks don’t meet their needs.

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Need a Locksmith?

Whether you decide to rekey or replace your locks, we recommend relying on the services of a professional locksmith who has the necessary expertise and equipment to handle the process from start to finish.

Our trained locksmiths are available 24 hours a day, seven days per week and can supply, fit, change or repair a broad variety of locks, including Anti-Snap Locks, Mortice Locks, Euro Cylinders and Combination Locks.

Don’t hesitate to contact us at 0800 0612 677 or 07801 733 788. 

4 Emergency Situations in Which You’d Want to Call a Locksmith

Some people don’t fully realise the value of professional locksmith services until they face a situation which requires emergency assistance and proper expertise.

In this article, we compiled four examples of such situations when you shouldn’t hesitate to call a locksmith right away. So let’s get to it!

1. You’ve Locked Yourself out of Your Home

Being unable to get back into your property is unquestionably unpleasant and annoying, but there is no need to panic. Also, don’t try to get back in by going through a window if this puts you at any risk of injury; it’s just not worth it!

So what should you do?

In case you don’t have any friends or family whom you’ve given a spare key to your home, you can always call in an emergency locksmith for help.

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Some locksmiths can be at your service in less than half an hour. So it’s best to wait for help instead of trying to force your way back in, which could result in damage to your door or lock which will be expensive to fix.

2. You’ve Experienced a Break-in

Besides losing valuables, experiencing a burglary can also cause emotional damage and leave you feeling vulnerable and unsafe in your own home.

It’s only natural to feel this way, but the sooner you do something about it, the sooner you’ll gain back that sense of control and security.

It’s why we recommend reaching out to a locksmith in your area who can repair the damage caused by the burglar sooner rather than later.

Whether the burglar damaged your doors or windows, our locksmiths can take care of the necessary burglary repairs to secure your home, including lock repairs and boarding up. 

In most cases, they can arrive at your home within 20-40 minutes.

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3. The Keys to Your Home Are Missing

This is yet another frustrating scenario in which it’s important to call a locksmith near you – especially if you suspect someone has stolen your keys, in which case it’s essential to have your locks replaced right away.

This will help prevent intruders from having unfettered access and give you peace of mind knowing your home is less vulnerable to a potential burglary attempt.

4. You Can’t Lock Your Door

Picture this scenario: it’s Monday morning and you’re in a hurry to get to work and drop your kids off at school. And just as you get out the door in a rush, you realise you can’t lock the door to your home.

Well, there are several possible reasons for why this happens. For instance:

  • The key is stuck or won’t turn in the lock. If you ever find yourself in this situation, don’t try to force the key to twist, as it could break inside the lock mechanism. Call a locksmith instead; they will know how to address this issue without causing unnecessary damage.
  • The key broke inside the lock because too much force has been applied to it. The best way to go about this is to ask for professional assistance. A trained locksmith will have both the necessary equipment and expertise to cut various types of keys on the spot.
  • The lock mechanism is faulty. In case the lock is broken or worn out, some parts of it will most likely need to be repaired or replaced altogether. Again, this is a situation best left in the hands of a professional.

For more common issues you may experience with locking your door and possible explanations, click here.

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Need to Call a Locksmith Right Now?

Emergency situations occur unexpectedly, so it never hurts to have a trusted locksmith in your contact list, just in case.

We provide a 24-hour service/7 days a week. So if you’re experiencing an emergency situation at this moment, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us by calling 0800 0612 677.