When your lock causes you trouble, it can creep up on you. It starts with that first time you have to jiggle the lock just a little. Soon, you’re performing a finely-tuned maneuver that involves lifting the handle just slightly and finessing the lock. But eventually, you may find yourself locked out if you don’t get it fixed.


Staying ahead of a damaged or broken lock can help you avoid getting stuck on the wrong side of a broken door and reduce the chance of a break-in. At Minneapolis Lock & Key, our locksmiths provide a complete range of residential locksmithing services throughout the Twin Cities area. Check out this guide to identifying signs of lock damage and whether you need repair or replacement services, then call our local residential locksmithing company.

Causes of Broken and Damaged Locks

A good lock can last for decades. But just like any other piece of equipment, the hands of time and normal wear and tear can take their toll. To avoid getting locked out of your home, don’t neglect any degree of lock damage.


These are a few common causes of faulty or broken locks:

Weather Stripping

Aging weather stripping slowly causes lock damage by eroding the exterior paint on a door.  As this paint chips and flakes off, the door lock latch can become damaged on the inside. The easiest way to prevent this type of damage is to replace weather stripping before it’s needed. If your weather stripping hasn’t been replaced in many years, there’s a good chance your latch could have damage.

Poor Alignment

Thermal changes due to weather cause wood and metal to expand and contract as temperatures fluctuate. Over time, a door bolt can become misaligned and require repositioning due to these temperature changes.

Accumulation of Dirt and Grime

Dirt, grit, and grime will get into your locks in small quantities over the years. Sometimes, this can cause a lock to seize up. An experienced residential locksmithing company can clean these locks and determine if the grit has caused the interior mechanisms of the lock to become damaged.

Damage from Lock Tampering

If your locks are tampered with, even if potential burglars are thwarted, your lock can still become damaged. Sometimes, criminals will rely on a fast and dirty form of break-in like drilling through a deadbolt, kicking down a door, or breaking the lock. But that’s not always the case.


Sometimes, burglars will use a locksmithing technique called bumping to manipulate the tumblers of a door. Burglars may also try to pick a lock using some sort of lock and pick to rake the lock’s tumblers. When used by trained professionals with a residential locksmithing company, these methods are perfectly safe. However, when used by amateurs, bumping and picking can damage a lock.


Signs of scuffing and denting around the keyhole are the most obvious indication that your locks have been tampered with. However, there are some less noticeable signs that your locks may have damage due to tampering:


●        Warped or damaged door frame

●        Signs that your lock fixture has been loosened then tightened

●        Bent latch or deadbolt

●        Key is more difficult to turn due to pin deformation

●        Key damage around metal edges of keyhole

●        Scratch marks around a keyhole

Deciding to Repair or Replace a Lock

If you’re having trouble with your lock, you’ll need to rekey, repair, or replace your lock. If the problem is nothing more than a bent key, lock rekey services are an easy fix. However, if the problem is something more significant, you’ll need to decide if your lock should be repaired or replaced.


With lock repair, only the broken part of the lock mechanism will be replaced. In many cases, replacing even a single part can add a few years of life to an aging lock. However, homeowners will often choose to replace a lock altogether when faced with lock damage for a few reasons:


●        If a lock is older, there is an increased chance that future problems could occur. Replacing the lock prevents any future problems.

●        Locks that were damaged during a breaking and entering attempt are replaced with more secure alternatives to prevent future intrusions.

●        A new lock can add curb appeal to a home.

Twin Cities Residential Lock Repair Services

Whether you’re having trouble with a tricky older lock or you’re locked out due to a lost key, we’ve got you covered at Minneapolis Lock & Key. Our expert locksmiths offer a complete range of residential locksmithing services, including:


●        New key creation services for lost keys

●        Lockout assistance

●        Lock rekey services

●        Stuck or broken key removal services

●        Mortise lock services

●        Antique key services

●        Lock repair services

●        New lock installation

●        Lock replacement services

Contact our Local Residential Locksmiths

Keeping a residential locksmithing company’s number handy as part of your household’s emergency numbers can be a homeowner’s saving grace when disaster strikes. To connect with an experienced locksmith fast, contact 612.823.8148 or connect with us online. To see our locks and get answers to your questions in person, stop by our showroom anytime. We’re happy to help!