There are many reasons for changing a lock
- You have moved into a new home and are worried about how many other keys are still in circulation
- Your locks need upgrading to meet insurance requirements
- The lock is faulty, old or damaged
- You have lost your keys and are worried that they might have got into the wrong hands
The obvious choice is to get on the phone, call a good local locksmith and arrange for them to carry out the work as soon as possible. However some people wonder if they can save some money by doing it themselves? They usually watch a few YouTube videos and feel that this gives them enough knowledge to give it a go. However, selecting and fitting a lock can be a risky thing to do. Firstly, you can be putting your home at risk of burglary if you fit the wrong lock or fit the lock incorrectly. Secondly if the lock is not the correct standard for your door and you get burgled your insurance company may refuse to pay out.
Reasons for leaving it to the experts
1. You need to understand the different ‘Lock Standards’
There are many different lock standards in the UK (TS007 1 star, 2 stars, 3 stars, BS 3621, BS 8621, BS10621, PAS3621, PAS8621, and SS312 Diamond). You need to understand what lock standard is required for your particular door to ensure it will meet your insurance company requirements as well as keep your home fully protected.
3. Locks come in lots of different shapes and sizes
Locks come in lots of different sizes and shapes and one size does not fit all. For example, the size of the cylinder lock you need is determined by the thickness of the door and handle combined. If you buy and fit one that is too big there is a very real risk of ‘lock snapping’. This is a technique burglars commonly use to break a lock and get quick and easy entry into your property.
4. You need to have the necessary skills
If you need to fit a more secure lock than the one you currently have, it may not be exactly the same size or shape. This may mean some carpentry skills and carpentry tools are required to fit the new lock. Without these, a job that you may have estimated taking a couple of hours may actually end up taking all weekend. It may even result in having to call an emergency locksmith, who will need to charge extra to correct the damage you have made before fitting the lock correctly. Remember, if a lock is not fitted correctly it will not perform as it should and may be a risk to the security of your home.
5. No guarantee with your own work
A good locksmith will always provide guarantees with their work. In most cases this will cover all new parts and work they have done and will usually last for 12 months. This means that if there are any problems a couple of months later you can call them up and they will be obliged to fix the problem. This can give you the peace of mind that doing it yourself can’t.
In some cases it is possible to fit your own locks but it requires a certain amount of knowledge and skill. For most people it is much more cost effective and time effective to call a trusted local locksmith to take care of the job. With years of training and experience, they can replace your old locks quickly and efficiently. You will also be able to relax, secure in the knowledge that the correct standard of lock has used, it has been fitted correctly, the work comes with a guarantee and your door is fully protected.