Unlocking the Mysteries of Locks, Keys, and Safes

4 Problems You Can Have With A Deadbolt

A deadbolt utilizes a solid metal bar to lock the door, which makes a door difficult to break through and improves security when used. However, the nature of how a deadbolt is constructed makes it prone to a few problems. Here are 4 issues you can have with a deadbolt, as well as what can be done to fix it.

Strike Plate Issues

Is the deadbolt having difficulty locking into place, or are you unable to unlock the deadbolt? This could be due to a strike plate that is sticking. The deadbolt strike plate will be located along the door jamb. It is a piece of metal that surrounds the hole that the deadbolt slides into. The deadbolt may be getting caught along the rough sides of the metal strike plate, which prevents the deadbolt from moving .

You can file down the rough metal edges to see if it fixes the issues. If that doesn't do it, you may need to adjust where the metal strike plate is located. This will involve removing the plate, filling in the holes with wood filler or putty, and then placing the plate in a new location.

Worn-Down Mechanism Issues

It's possible that after years of use that the locking mechanism inside the deadbolt has become worn down. You can try fixing this by taking off the deadbolt cover and applying lubricant to the moving parts inside of it. If the mechanism is beyond repair, you may have to replace the old deadbolt with a new one.

Door Frame Issues

While a deadbolt is designed to keep your home secure, it will only work if the entire door frame is strong. A weak door frame would compromise the stability of the deadbolt, making it easy to kick down a door if someone is trying to break in. You may need to have the door frame reinforced to give it more stability, which will make your home more secure.

Key Issues

Sometimes the issue is not with the deadbolt itself, but the key used to open the deadbolt. It is possible that your key has become worn down from everyday use and is not catching on the deadbolt cylinders to unlock the door. If using another key works, toss out that old key and get copies made from the good key.

Need help doing any of these things? Know that you can call a local locksmith at a company like Ability Lock & Key to come to your home and take care of it for you.