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Encountering a door lock that is hard to turn is a frequent occurrence and it can worsen gradually or happen suddenly. 

While it can be an inconvenience, calling a locksmith should not be your first step. Instead, there are various reasons why this might happen, and there are several measures you can take to try and address the issue.

There are various factors that can cause a door lock to become stiff, such as:

  • Dirt buildup in the lock, which highlights the importance of regular maintenance, especially during times of building work or increased dust and debris.
  • Cold weather can cause locks to seize up, and this can lead to numerous calls for assistance during the winter season.
  • Hot weather can cause doors to expand due to heat, leading to movement that can impact the lock.
  • Subsidence or movement within the building can affect the lock’s functionality.
  • The addition of a draft excluder to a door can shift the locked position, leading to lock problems.
  • A worn-out or poor-quality lock can cause internal parts to wear out and break.
  • In some cases, individuals who lack hand strength, such as the elderly, young children, and those with arthritis, may find it challenging to turn the key. Special gadgets can be attached to assist with this issue.

Steps on how to fix a stiff door

When called to address a stiff door lock issue, there is a process that locksmiths follow to diagnose and fix the problem. 

However, before contacting a professional, there are certain steps you can take to resolve some problems yourself using quick-fix door lock solutions, while others may require the expertise of a locksmith.

Step 1- Apply Graphite Powder

To apply powdered graphite, use the nozzle of the tube to gently insert it into the lock and squeeze a small amount of the powder out.

Repeat this process for both sides of the key. If powdered graphite is not available, you can rub the tip of a pencil against the lock and turn the key several times.

Step 2 – Lubricate the Lock

After applying the graphite, insert the key into the lock and turn it several times to ensure that the graphite is evenly distributed. Repeat this process until the lock is smooth and easy to turn.

In case you don’t have powdered graphite, a graphite pencil can be used as an alternative. 

Rub the end of the pencil over the key and insert it into the lock, turning it multiple times. 

Refer to the instructional video below for a step-by-step guide on using graphite powder and a pencil to fix a stiff door lock.

How Much Should a New Lock Cost?

If all else fails, replacing the lock may be necessary, but it can be costly. Get in touch with us today for a FREE quote and let us unlock your problems!

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