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How do you replace a lock yourself?

Locksmith Tampa

Keep your home safe by regularly replacing the lock on the front door. You can hire a locksmith to replace locks. He has the knowledge and tools to replace the lock for you quickly. An alternative is to replace a lock yourself. This article explains how to lock replacement works step-by-step and what needs to be considered. When replacing locks, it is advisable to opt for a certified lock. These locks have been tested for the resistance they offer to the most common burglary methods.

Install or replace a new lock?

Fitting a new lock is easiest if you opt for a ready-made door with a lock hole. You can place a mortise lock or, for example, a security lock on these standard doors. The security lock is usually the most secure lock for a door. Mortise locks are often used for doors inside your home, such as the door between your hall and garage or on windows. Don’t have a lock hole in your door yet? In that case, make sure to mill this hole out yourself.

Tools to replace or install a lock

It would be best if you had different tools to install a new lock. Do you already have the following items at home?

  • chisel
  • drill
  • square
  • Wood drills
  • File
  • Tape measure
  • hole saw
  • Hacksaw

Different types of locks for doors

Interior doors are usually secured with mortise locks, fitted with a day or deadbolt. With a lock with a latch bolt, you open the door by moving the door handle or a rotary knob. There is a slope on the latch bolt at the place where the door will soon fall into the lock. That is an essential difference with a deadbolt. A deadbolt is, in fact, completely straight. A deadbolt cannot be opened with the door handle but only with a key. Handy, for example, for the door for your meter cupboard.

Are you dealing with a very narrow interior door? In that case, choose a rim lock. The difference between the mortise and rim lock is that the rim lock is mounted on the door where the mortise lock is in the door. Rim locks are also offered with a day and deadbolt.

A cylinder lock is usually chosen for exterior doors. The mortise locks that you use on interior doors offer insufficient protection. A cylinder lock is placed in the lock case of the door. The advantage of a cylinder lock is that it can be replaced relatively easily.

A step-by-step plan for installing a new lock

Step 1: determine the direction of rotation of the lock

Before installing the lock, it is essential to decide on the direction of rotation of the door. It makes no difference whether the door opens inwards or outwards. You will find examples of images that explain what is meant by the left and proper rotation on the internet. It can help you determine what the best option for you is.

Step 2: Adjust lock based on your choice

Based on the choice you made in the first step, it may be necessary to adjust the lock. It only applies to the lock with latch bolt, as it slopes and must fall into the lock correctly. Use a small screwdriver to push up the catch on the lock. If successful, you can turn the latch bolt and push it back.

Step 3: determine the location for the lock

Now determine where the lock should be mounted in the door. Take a square and a pencil for this. In most cases, the door handle is placed at a height of approximately 105 cm. Draw on the door where the bottom and top of the lock will be located. Then draw the centre line across the narrow part of the door, based on the marked position of the top and bottom of the lock. Take the lock case and place it on the centre line. Then draw the outline, which, together with the horizontal lines, determines where to drill the hole for the lock.

Step 4: drill out the lock hole

Now that it has been determined where the lock hole should be drilled, it is essential to calculate how deep the hole should be. It is wise to make the hole a little deeper (about 5-10 mm). It will soon make it easier to place the lock. After drilling the hole, you can use a chisel to make the hole nice and round.

Step 5: Draw and cut out the lock plate

Does the lock case now fit in the drilled hole? In that case, you can start sticking out the lock plate. You do this by inserting the lock into the lock hole and then drawing out where the lock plate will be located. Next, use the chisel to cut out the space for the striker plate.

Step 6: Drill Holes for the Door Handle

You can almost place the lock! First, hold the lock against the outside of the door and mark with a pencil. Then use an awl to make a small hole in the door. Next, use the drill to drill out the hole on both sides of the door. Make sure the diameter of the hole matches the door handle.

Step 7: Securing the lock in the door

Retake the lock and insert it into the hole you drilled in the door. Then tighten the lock plate securely with suitable wood screws. These are not supplied as standard with the lock. Then, place the door handle and door fitting in the right place. It is vital to check that the door handle is securely fastened. There will be a lot of pressure on the door handle, which could cause it to bend if the door handle is not seated correctly.

Step 8: mounting the striker plate on the frame

Now it is only a matter of mounting the striker plate on the frame. First, measure how deep the space for the striker plate should be and cut this out with the chisel. The striker plate should not protrude, as it could damage the door. Then poke holes in the frame’s wood to allow the latch or deadbolt to fall in. Use wood screws to secure the striker plate to the frame.

Step 9: bend the protective lip of the striker plate

The last step when installing a new lock is to bend the protective lip of the striker plate. Often a plastic hammer is enough to bend it. Be careful to avoid damage to the door frame. The protective lip protects the frame against a protruding day or deadbolt.

Step-by-step plan: replace an old lock

Do you want to replace the lock on an existing door? The step-by-step plan below explains how this works step by step. Replacing an old lock can be interesting after a move, among other things. For example, you want to prevent an old key from roaming around somewhere, with which people could enter your home. It depends on the type of lock on the door how best to replace it. Below, you will find a step-by-step plan for three different types of locks: rim locks with a fixed cylinder, rim locks with an outer cylinder, and mortise locks with a cylinder.

Lock Change Tools

You need relatively few tools to replace a lock. It depends on the type of lock you are replacing and which is precise. For example, with a rim lock with a fixed cylinder, you only need a chisel and several screwdrivers.

In the case of a rim lock with an outer cylinder, you can use a screwdriver and hacksaw to fit the new cylinder. A chisel is unnecessary because you do not have to replace the lock case itself. However, you would need such tools to replace the lock case. In this case, it may be advisable to follow the previous step-by-step plan for installing a completely new lock.

In the case of a mortise lock with a cylinder, a screwdriver is sufficient. Here too, only the cylinder is replaced so that no wood has to be cut from the door or the door frame. If you cannot remove the locknut with a screwdriver, you can use a screwdriver. When replacing the cylinder, you must have the lock’s key to hand. It is not possible to replace a cylinder without using your key. In that case, the cylinder is in the locking position.

Rim lock with a fixed cylinder

Step 1 Loosen the screws

With a rim lock with a fixed cylinder, it is not possible to replace only the cylinder in the lock. It means you have to remove the entire lock from the door to renew it. To remove the lock, loosen the screws and pull the lock from the door.

Step 2 Install a new rim lock

Then place the new rim lock on the door. Keep in mind that some wood may need to be cut out of the door for the new lock to fit. A chisel can help you with this.

Step 3 Replace any closing bowl

Not only may some wood have to be put out of the door. It is also possible that the new latch or deadbolt does not fit appropriately into the striker. In that case, it is essential to replace the closing bowl.


Rim lock with a separate outer cylinder

Step 1 Loosen the screws

With a rim lock with a separate outer cylinder, you can only replace the outer cylinder. However, you can leave the lock case in place! First, eradicate the lock case from the door to access the cylinder. You can easily remove a lock case by unscrewing the screws in the door. Now remove the cylinder plate and take the outer cylinder out of the door.

Step 2 Parting wood with a chisel

To fit the new outer cylinder, it may be necessary to poke some wood out of the door with a chisel. You can easily find out by inserting the new outer cylinder into the existing hole. After sticking out the wood, place the outer cylinder in the door and tighten the cylinder plate on the inside.

Step 3 Shorten cylinder lip

Now slide the existing lock case over the cylinder lip of the new outer cylinder. This cylinder lip often has to be shortened—Mark on the cylinder lip where you will have to cut it off later. Remember that the cylinder tongue will still protrude at least 10 mm. Saw off the cylinder lip with a hacksaw.

Step 4 Secure lock case

It’s time to fasten the lock case. Do this initially with two of the four screws to test whether the lock works properly. Are you able to turn the key, and the lock works smoothly? In that case, you can firmly tighten the various parts of the rim lock. Your lock has been replaced!

Replacing a mortise lock cylinder

Step 1 Replace lock shields

Just like with a rim lock with an outer cylinder, you only need to replace the cylinder with a mortise lock to make your home more secure. Before replacing the cylinder, first, remove the lock shields. Do this on both the front and the back of the lock.

Step 2 Remove the retaining bolt

After removing the lock shields from the lock, you can remove the retaining bolt. The locking bolt can be found on the side of the door.

Step 3 Push cylinder out of lock hole

Removing the retaining bolt will cause the cylinder to become loose. Instead, you can push the cylinder out of the lock hole in the door. Use the key here! Without a key, removing the cylinder from the lock hole will not be possible. Move the key back and forth slightly until you notice that the lock’s locking pin is in the straight position.

Step 4 Replacing the cylinder

Then replace the cylinder with a similar lock. This way, you usually don’t have to widen the hole in the door. The locking pin must be open before inserting the cylinder into the lock hole when installing the new cylinder. You open the locking pin with the key in the same way that you removed the cylinder of the old lock from the lock hole.

Step 5 Securing Parts

Assemble the different parts of the lock on the door. It means that you first place the cylinder in the door. Then tighten the locknut on the narrow side of the door and finish the project by turning the lock shields into place. You can now use the door again!

Is it not working, or do you think this is not for you? Then hire a professional Locksmith Tampa!