Rekey and Lock Changes
If you need your locks rekeyed, the professionals at MJB Lock Services are ready to rekey your locks at the drop of a hat. We can rekey the most common locks found on commercial and residential buildings. In addition, we can also rekey several different automotive ignitions. Our rekeying service is our most commonly performed service. That is great, but what is a rekey?
What is a Rekey?
In short, the rekey process disables the old key and establishes a new one. This process does not change out the physical lock. Instead, the lock is taken apart and the key pins are changed out to match a new key.
Rekeying a lock does not increase the security behind the lock, rather it establishes a different key for normal use.
Reasons to Rekey Your Locks
- Revoke Access
- Employee Turnover
- Previous Owner and Friends
- Lost Keys
- Stolen Keys
- Moving into New Buildings
How does a Rekey Work?
Pin tumbler locks operate off of pin stacks. Typically, a lock contains five or six pin stacks. If you want to know how many yours has, count the valleys in your key. Each pin stack contains three components. First, a spring that pushes down on the stack. The spring keeps everything in place. Second, a driver pin which are generally the same size. Third, a key pin which varies in size to match the depths on your key. While rekeying a lock, the key pins are changed to meet the new keys specs.
Lock Change or Replacement
Although rekeying will always take care of your key control needs, sometimes locks need to be replaced. If the current latch or otherwise associated hardware is not working well, a replacement may be the best choice.
In addition, you may need to replace hardware to match keys. Locks that all have the same keyway can be keyed to match; however, if your key will not enter the lock, then they cannot be keyed the same. Consequently, a lock replacement may be needed to match the key system.
Lastly, new hardware may be required if you are switching keyways to upgrade the lock and key. Hardware is often not built to be interchangeable. Therefore, upgrading keyways may require the purchase of new hardware. Essentially, if the lock works well and looks good, rekeying is an easy way to control the key. Otherwise, maintenance or replacement will be your go to solution.
Rekey vs Lock Change
There are two main differences between a rekey and a lock change:
- New Hardware
The cost of a rekey is significantly cheaper than a replacing the existing hardware. There is more labor and the hardware cost added onto the process; however, you will have the benefit of brand new hardware. The option you go with depends on the circumstance.
- Best Used When Hardware Works Well
- Need to Establish a Different Operating Key
- Change Operating Key if Lost or Stolenl
- Keep Current Locks – Only Change Key
Solution Lock Change
- Replace Broken Hardware
- Match Key System – Brand or Keyway Matching
- Upgrading Lock and Key
Mike did a FANTASTIC job rekeying my locks. The locks have never worked this well or been this easy to turn. He was prompt, professional, and friendly. I highly recommend MJB!
–Patricia Braun – Google
I contacted MJB last minute to do a house rekey. They were great! Showed up right on time and got the rekey done quickly. They also showed me a few things to watch out for with my locks and taught me some interesting stuff about locks in general. Would definitely use them again!
–Christopher Davis – Google
They are absolutely awesome. I needed to get my condo rekeyed and Mike came out the same day finished rekeying my place in like 30 minutes and helped me understand how to best secure my home. Not only did he provide excellent service but at a great price. I am grateful I found him and I would recommend this business to anyone looking for lock services.
–Schevita P. -Yelp
FAQ – Rekey and Lock Changes
- Should I rekey my locks or change them entirely?
Ultimately, this is very situational. In general, if you need a key issue solved, rekey your locks. If you need a broken hardware issue fixed, change the hardware.
- My key will not turn, but it did before: What’s Happening?
In this situation, the issue can depend highly on what type of lock it is. The typical cause is buildup inside the lock. Often times you can spray some lubricant (not WD40) into the lock to free it up. Sometimes this is a long term solution, but in most situations it is best to have a professional service the lock.
- My key turns smoothly, but I must jiggle the key to turn the lock.
This issue is most often because a cut in your key is too low. Jiggling the key can get that tumbler set in the correct place to open the lock. Acquiring a code cut key replacement will oftentimes solve this problem.
- The key is very difficult to turn:
This can be caused by a couple of different things. First, your key copy is not to specs. This happens when one or more of the cuts has too much material on it. Sometimes getting the key duplicated again will solve this problem. Other times the issue can be caused by buildup or broken hardware. In this situation, the locks will likely need replaced.
- How long does rekeying a lock take?
The time it takes depends highly on the hardware that surrounds the locks. For residential customers, I tell them roughly four locks an hour. Commercial hardware can take a bit longer.