There is nothing more aggravating than dealing with a sticky lock. Over time, lubricants in the lock dry out or dirt accumulates making the locks harder to turn. There are a couple easy solutions for fixing a sticky lock.
Avoid Home Remedies
Coating the key with olive oil or washing out the lock with soapy water, typical home remedies that are often suggested, will actually make matters worse, according to First Time Homeowners.com. Even WD40, a cure-all for most similar scenarios, is also not recommended for spraying into the lock.
Oily lubricants will attract dirt and clog the lock mechanism, making it harder to operate. The soapy water will clear out the lubrication in the lock. Over time, these methods will actually damage the lock.
Check the Bolt and Key
If the lock is hard to operate, first check the bolt that that goes into the strike plate on the door frame. Make sure it is fitting properly. Check your key to make sure it is not bent. Even a slight bend in the key will make it difficult to operate the lock.
Powdered Graphite is the Best Solution
The traditional fix for a sticky pin tumbler lock is powdered graphite. This can be purchased in hardware or home stores.
The powdered graphite comes in an aerosol can or a tube. Both come with a thin nozzle that is inserted into the keyhole. A couple sprays into the lock of the dry lubricant will generally the cure the lock’s ill and have it working smoothly.
Because the powdered graphite is dry, no dirt or grime can accumulate unlike the oil lubricants. The graphite coats the tumbler pins and makes them slippery for ease of operation.
A Number 2 Pencil
If you can’t get to the store to purchase a can of graphite, a number 2 pencil is another option. The lead in the pencil is actually graphite and when ground up, is the same powdered consistency as the spray graphite.
If you have a wooden pencil, whittle off as much wood as you can, making a long, sharp point. Be sure there is no wood or dust from the wood on the point. For a mechanical pencil, twist out three-quarters-of-an-inch or so of the lead.
Next, jam it into the keyhole and twist it, getting as much graphite in as possible. Then, take your key and slide it in and out several times, grounding up the graphite. Turn the key a few times to see if it is working smoother. It may take a little bit, but the pieces will ground up and lubricant the lock.
Call a Locksmith
These solutions for fixing a sticky lock should work. If these methods do not work, contact us at Abington Locksmith. We can cure all your lock ills.