Facts You Should Know About Lock Snapping and How to Prevent It


One of the most common ways of breaking into homes is through the front door. Surprisingly, many people forget to lock their door or tend to leave their key under the doormat, which makes it extremely easy for burglars to get inside someone’s house.

Even if you lock your door and don’t leave any keys under the doormat, you may still be susceptible to lock snapping.

What Is Lock Snapping?

It’s one of the most common methods used by home invaders and it involves snapping the cylinder lock in two by applying a certain amount of force.

When the cylinder snaps, it exposes the lock mechanism and so the intruder can tamper with it and unlock the door within seconds.

This technique is commonly used by burglars because it does not require experience or skills, only mere brute force and a tool such as a hammer or a screwdriver.

lock snapping

Is Your Lock at Risk of Being Snapped?

The key locks which can be easily snapped are those which have a euro cylinder profile and extend beyond 3mm of the handle.

If you’re not quite sure what type of locks you have, you can use our guide to identify them.

Euro cylinders are commonly found in the majority of uPVC doors and they come in different sizes and profiles to suit various door sizes.

Among all the profiles available, the Euro profile is the one which is more vulnerable to lock snapping.

According to West Yorkshire Police, this technique is on the rise as it was used by a quarter of burglars during break-ins.

How to Prevent Lock Snapping and Protect Your Home

Lock manufacturers have developed anti-snap cylinders, so there are many options you can choose from today to upgrade your door lock.


The anti-snap cylinders can have a ‘snap-off’ section integrated which will come off if a burglar was to try and snap the lock, making the cylinder shorter. As a result, it will be more difficult for the intruder to gain entry.

Here are our recommendations when it comes to upgrading your lock:

  • Choose a cylinder lock which has a 3-star rating under TS007 and/or the Sold Secure Diamond Standard (SS312). These two are nationally recognised standards for cylinders. According to West Yorkshire Police, you can also achieve the 3-star rating by combining a 1-star cylinder with a 2-star handle. Euro cylinders can be rated from one to three stars. This star rating system defines a lock’s level of protection.
  • The cylinder lock needs to be measured properly to ensure it is the right size for your door. It should never be fitted so the lock is protruding from the door or handle.
  • Consider upgrading your door handle as well by one that has a 2-star rating under TS007.
  • Hire a professional locksmith when installing the new door lock. By doing this yourself, you risk not installing it properly, which will make it easy for intruders to tamper with the lock.

Protect Your Home Against Lock Snapping

Even though lock snapping is one of the most common methods used by burglars to break into houses, now it’s easier than ever to keep your home and family safe.

Our locksmiths can repair or replace broken, old or failing locks including anti-snap locks, mortice locks, Euro Cylinders, combination locks and more.

If you don’t have an anti-snap lock yet, then feel free to give us a call at 0800 0612 677 for a free, no-obligation quote.