Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Aurora Master Locksmith: Lock Maintenance

Regularly maintaining your locks will ensure everything is working correctly. Whether you own a home or a business, keeping your security in check is important – after all, nobody wants to have to experience the aftermath of a break-in, nor will they want to be locked out because of a malfunctioning fixture that wasn’t cared for accordingly.

For these reasons, we’re taking the time to tell you some of the basic lock maintenance checks you can do yourself – and a how a locksmith can help you enhance your overall security.

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Practical Information When You Are Locked Out of your Car

It is hard for some people to even think about being locked out of their car because it has never happened to them. If you’re having a problem remembering where you left your car keys or you suspect that they have been stolen, this article is for you. At Aurora Master Locksmith in Aurora, CO, the majority of our service requests are for motorists who are unable to locate their car keys. It is up to us to come to their aid by quickly arriving to their location in order to provide them with another key or get them back inside of their car, where they have left the key in their car ignition. If you have ever shown up to put the key in your door to get inside and realized that you do not have your keys, you already understand how upsetting such a situation can be. This is why you should heed the advice of some of the most responsive and efficient locksmiths in the area. They have seen enough people with this problem that they feel as though they can help them avoid losing their keys or what they can do if their keys are stolen. Listen up!

Trace Your Steps – If you have just discovered that you do not have your keys, you’ll need to retrace your steps to see if they show up. In some cases, you may simply put them down to pick something else up. Don’t be afraid to ask people whom you may have also come in contact with, whether or not they have noticed some keys or turned in some keys. They may just have turned them in to someone but you might never know if you do not ask.

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

TRANSPONDER KEYS AND THEIR PROBLEMS

Transponder keys are responsible for a dramatic drop in auto theft everywhere they are used. Surprisingly, many people aren’t quite sure what a transponder key really is, or they have some vague idea, but are not quite sure how they actually work. Even less known is that once in a while transponder keys can have problems, and not work as they should. This is why our Aurora Master Locksmith experts have made this post; hopefully, it will help you understand the value of your transponder keys and how to deal with any issues that may arise with them.

Let’s start with the basics!

Transponder is a word that means “to transmit” and this is exactly what your transponder key does; transmit a signal. This signal is sent from your key directly to your car’s computer. If that signal is recognized, your car starts. If not, it won’t. Can you see how this can drastically reduce car theft? The transponder key system works and works well. In fact, it’s been in use since the early 1990’s and with no signs of slowing down due to its effectiveness. You might be wondering what happens if someone makes a copy of your transponder key; won’t it make your car start for them, too? Here’s where the proverbial “catch” is. Transponder keys are hard to duplicate and program. This process is also very expensive and usually only done by car dealerships with auto maker authorization. Needless to say, these dealers will not make key copies for just anyone; you actually have be the designated owner of the car first! So what does a locksmith have to do with any of this? Keep reading; we are getting to that!

Monday, February 6, 2017

HOW TO PREVENT LOCKOUTS



It happens to the best of us. It’s so aggravating and inconvenient to see that you are locked out, and it’s particularly infuriating if you’re stranded without your keys after sundown. Right now, you can decide to put some simple principles in place as a daily habit. Choose to adopt these easy strategies from now on, and there will be no reason you’ll ever find yourself locked out again!

Store a spare key in a common-sense hiding place. Putting a key under the mat, beneath a flower pot, or over your door frame, is not a good idea. Every thief knows to look in these places. A fake-rock keyholder is pointless if a professional criminal already knows what it looks like. It’s better to give your extra key to a neighbor you trust ~ preferably someone who’s home most of the time.

Keys, wallet, phone. Whenever you go out the door, remind yourself: keys, wallet, phone. Make it your basic mantra from now on. Stop. Do a pat-down, check your pockets, and check your purse or pack. (You might want to add a few more items to your list, such as: driving glasses, reading glasses, sunglasses, and so on.)

Replace any faulty locks. Keep an eye on all your locks. Upgrade, fix, or replace them when needed. If any of your locks become hard to open, the key could break inside the lock mechanism. Don’t get copies of keys made that are already duplicates, because they eventually won’t work. If you have any locks that are too worn-out, they’re bound to get jammed.

Always know where your keys are. Stay aware of your keys wherever you go. If you walk out, and you realize that you’ve forgotten something, and then you go back to get it, don’t put your keys down on the table and forget them! Keep your keys in your hand, or inside your pocket or purse. Remember, if you ever lend a spare key to a trusted friend, always get it back as soon as you can.

If you want to be bold, carry a phony credit card. Keep one of those fake sample credit cards from junk mail, or an expired gift card. Don’t use an actual one, because you will definitely ruin it. It doesn’t work like it does in the movies, but it still might work for you ~ that is, only if there isn’t a deadbolt. It must be a bored door lock, with the sloped ridge of the bolt facing toward you. (If the door opens toward you, then the bolt is probably facing the wrong way.) If the bolt is the right type, and it’s facing the right direction, then give it a try:

1.      Put the card in the space in between the door and the jamb above the bolt.
2.      Ever so gently, slide the card down between the strike plate and the bolt.
3.      Push the card, and push the door.
4.            If you are fortunate, the door will open, and you’ll leave everything (except the card) undamaged.

If you’re more adventurous, take a pick set with you. If your local and state laws allow you to do so, try picking the lock. Not all locks can be picked, but it could be worth a try. And perhaps some day you will be able to help someone else who’s locked out.

Before you get into a jam, find a legitimate locksmith. The right way to locate a reputable locksmith is to track one down ahead of time, before you ever need one. Do your research, so you won’t get scammed or overcharged.

Ask family, friends, and colleagues for recommendations. Word of mouth from a satisfied customer is always your best bet.

Do your homework. To find a local trusty locksmith, check your phone book and the Web. Write down locksmith companies in your area, with their addresses and telephone numbers. Locate the locksmiths who specialize in the services you need. Utilizing the Internet, you can match up the telephone numbers with the street addresses. A deceptive company may list a fake address, or none at all, claiming it’s local. If someone answers your call with a general greeting such as “locksmith services,” then ask for what the whole business name is. If that person won’t tell you, take it off the list. Bear in mind that some reputable locksmith companies might not include a street address simply because they run a mobile business, so that they can dispatch a locksmith professional local to every customer. Therefore, just ask why their address isn’t listed.

Confirm the locksmith’s credentials. When the locksmith arrives, ask for ID, a business card, and proof of license. The invoice ought to include the locksmith company’s name. The locksmith’s truck should show the company name as well, and match the company name on the business card and invoice. The locksmith must also ask you for your identification, too. Before beginning any work, a locksmith must authenticate your identity, and verify that you’re the actual property owner.

Be skeptical if a locksmith tells you you’re going to have to drill or replace your lock just because you’re locked out. An expert locksmith of integrity will carry the right tools, and have the expertise to know that such drastic measures would be overkill. A true professional locksmith is able to unlock virtually anything.

When you’ve finally found a reliable locksmith, keep that company’s contact information in a logical place, such as on your smart device, on the refrigerator, in your wallet, or on your bulletin board at work ~ so you’ll always have what you need to get yourself out of trouble . An exceptional locksmith will always be happy to answer your questions.

If you’re in Aurora, Colorado, consider hiring Aurora Master Locksmith, a locksmith company whose staff mobile professional locksmith technicians are available 24/7 to provide automotive, residential, commercial, and emergency locksmith solutions.

What if you’re locked out now? If you don’t have a hidden extra key, or you don’t have a neighbor or friend who keeps one for you, then check to see if you left a window or another door open.

If all else fails, hire a locksmith! You may be tempted to entertain the idea of kicking in the door or breaking a window. But should you really risk being mistaken for a burglar? Of course not. Avoid this mess in the future! Plan ahead!

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Aurora Master Locksmith: What to Do When a Safe Is Jammed

Whether you’re a homeowner or business owner, a safe is always a great choice for protecting your valuables. While you can trust these to provide you durable security, there’s always the odd occasion when you might be faced with a safe that’s no longer opening as it should. A locksmith will be able to help you with these issues, but there are some quick checks you can do yourself before calling for assistance. If you find yourself with a safe that is jammed, here is what you need to do:

Possible reasons your safe won’t open

1)    Dead batteries
The best case scenario for all safe troubles is that the culprit is simply a dead battery. Even if you see lights shining through your keypad, it’s always best to test the batteries – before applying any other fixes, as a low-power surge may impede it to complete its opening operations. See if a battery change resolves your issues. But take note: off-brand batteries wear out much quicker than branded ones, so it’s best to invest in a battery that will have a longer lifespan.

2)    Your bolt work is stuck
If you can hear a motor running but you can’t open your safe, the most likely reason for it will be that the bolt work is jammed. The first thing you need to do in order to get it unstuck? Kick it. Yes, you read that correctly – turn your back to the safe, and mule kick the door a couple of times. Be very careful not to hit the keypad or handle: you’re trying to loosen the bolt work, not damage the safe’s components. After doing this a few times, try and turn the handle in the opposite direction it’s supposed to go, and enter your safe’s combination. All these steps should release the pressure from the bolt work, allowing you to move it more freely.

3)    Deactivated code
When you have a safe with multiple combinations, a code deactivation could explain why your safe is not opening. In this situation, get someone else who has access to the safe through a different code to check if they can open it. If their code works without a hitch, you may need to set up a new combination for yourself.

4)    Penalty lockout modes and/or time delay
Many safes will penalize you for entering the wrong digits too many times. This can come in the form of a time delay, where you have to wait a few minutes before you try again, or a full lockout mode. You’ll know when you’re faced with the latter as it often comes with a loud beeping noise. In both cases, wait about 10 or 20 minutes, and try opening it again.

5)    Damaged wiring
Your safe’s keypads, like any other electronics, are not fully immune to damaged or faulty wiring. If you’re confident about your DIY abilities, remove the keypad from the door and inspect the wiring to see if anything has come loose, snapped, or there are any kinks causing an interference. Everything looks intact? Then try disconnecting the battery for 20 seconds, reinstalling it again, and connecting everything back together to check if it’s all back to normal. Seeing strong signs of damage? You’ll need to call a locksmith – make sure to tell them what type of safe and keypad you own so they can come with the right parts for your replacement.

6)    Shifting numbers
This is something that occurs in safes with older combination locks or locks that haven’t been properly maintained, where the code would have shifted positions. Combination shifting is a sign that you’ll need to call a professional, as these tend to indicate that, without proper repairs, the lock will fail completely.

The way to check for combination shifting is to either subtract one from each number, and keep trying this until you’ve subtracted five, or to proceed with the same steps but adding to the numbers instead. In other words, if you have a safe combination of 50-60-70, you would initially try 49-59-69, then 48-58-68 and so on until you’ve reached 45-55-65; and then you would do the same with addition: from 51-61-71; 52-62-72 right until 55-65-75. 

Getting help from a qualified locksmith 

A qualified locksmith will be well-versed in safe installations, repairs and replacements. If you’re experiencing any kind of issues with your home or business safe, these pros should be your port of call – they will have all the right equipment to solve your issues promptly and efficiently. Remember to always hire a locally-based expert who specializes in the type of protection you are looking for – some locksmiths may only focus on residential services, for instance, while others may offer a fully-inclusive set of options.

When choosing the right professional to hire, it’s always best to get recommendations and take the time to do some background checking. Local lock and key services providers won’t balk at you for requesting information like license and insurance details, how long they’ve been in business, and a list of client references in your area. Reading up on online reviews and cross-checking each company through your local Better Business Bureau will also help you get better insight into the locksmith business’s reputation.

Always get a full cost breakdown for your safe repairs, and be very wary of any locksmith who changes their price quote upon arriving to your property. Whenever possible, try to visit a company on their location and consult with a professional about their solutions. Never hire a business you can’t trace a physical address back to, and be very wary of any locksmith who changes their price quote on arrival and tries to get you to agree to a full safe replacement without a valid reason.
 
Are you looking for safe repairs in and replacements in Aurora, CO? The licensed and insured team at Aurora Master Locksmith will be able to help. We’re available 24/7 in case of emergencies, and you can always get a free consultation and price quote from our locally-based business too.

No matter where you live, a locally-based locksmith will help you resolve any issues that emerge from a jammed up safe. Whether you need to replace a keypad, or you simply need to change the combination, a qualified expert will bring you full peace of mind in all situations.  

Monday, November 7, 2016

Finding the Right Locks for Home and Business

With the amount of different locks that there are so choose from, you might find it difficult to find the right lock for your needs. If you live in or around Aurora, CO, you can count on the expert locksmiths of Aurora Master Locksmith to provide you with the help that you need in determining which type of lock to have installed. We would advise you to take some time to at least read about the different types of locks that you can choose from before you decide on a particular type. While we encourage you to do your research, we know that it can be rather time consuming when you have absolutely no idea what is available to you. We have simplified this process for you by highlighting some of the most popular types of home and business locks used today. You might already have lever, deadbolt, knob or padlock lock on your doors but not know how they work. Read below for additional information.

Deadbolt Locks

You’ll be able to choose between three types of deadbolt locks. There is a single, double or thumb turn deadbolt lock. It is the single cylinder lock that you will found installed in most homes. A key cylinder is used on the outside of the door with the thumb turn inside. This is what helps you open the door. You will be required to have a key in order to open either side of the door. This could be problematic if there is an emergency and you need to make a quick exit. The problem would result when you are unable to locate one of the keys. A thumb turn lock has both the single and double cylinder. This type of deadbolt lock can be locked with the use of a key.

Rim Locks/Mortise Locks

This type of lock is usually used on doors of commercial businesses or apartments. The two locks are similar in some regards but they use different hardware. A rim cylinder lock is installed on the inside of a door. There is a long piece that shoots out the back of the lock and connects to the locking mechanism on the other side. The mortise lock uses hardware on the inside. A cam is used to connect the locking mechanism and is kept together with a set of screws. Mortise locks come in different lengths and cams, based on the type of hardware the lock has.

Padlocks

A padlock is made of strong, sturdy materials but is not a permanent lock. This type of lock can be removed and placed on other things, as needed. There are keyed padlocks and combination padlocks. With a combination padlock, you are required to enter a specific set of numbers in order to disengage the lock. They come in rekeyable and non-rekeyable. This means that with the rekeyable lock, it can be changed but the none-rekeyable lock will not enable you to do this (change the lock).
Knob Locks

This is what you’ll find on most home locks. They shouldn’t be used as your main lock. The lock cylinder is not on the inside of the door rather it is inside the knob. This makes it easy to break. While you see this type of lock on the outside of many homes, at Aurora Master Locksmith we suggest you have this type of lock installed on the inside doors of your home. We also recommend that when it is used on your home that there is also a deadbolt lock on the same door.
 
Wall Mounted Lock


Used for most commercial businesses, a wall mounted lock can be used for storing small items, such as, keys. This type of lock is often installed during the building process. Some even have alarm sensors, which alert you to unauthorized entry.

Interchangeable Core Cylinder Lock

Large businesses have this type of lock installed and is known for their convenience. Re-keying is possible without taking the whole key apart. We only need to change the core to change the lock. Two keys open this type of lock a control key and traditional key. It is also convenient because you don’t have to change the hardware to change the lock. Unlike most other locks, you cannot install a deadbolt lock alongside an interchangeable core cylinder. They simply do not work together.

Lever Handle Lock

We install this type of lock on the inside of a lot of commercial businesses. They give customers or clients easy and convenient access by just pushing down on the handle and opening the door. 

Jimmy Proof Deadbolts

This is a lock that is installed on apartment doors. It cannot be modified too much. It isn’t easy to break this type of lock because it connects to the jamb bracket. While it isn’t easy to break, it is simple to have installed. It is screwed to the inside of your door. A hole is made to install the rim cylinder. 

Rim Latch Locks

There is a surface mount latch on one side with a rim cylinder on the other. You’ll also find this type of lock in apartments. This isn’t the type of lock that you’ll want to use as your primary lock without using something like a deadbolt along with it.

Don’t take this decision lightly. Let a qualified and experience locksmith help you make your final decision about the type of locks to have installed. It is possible to find a key in your price range that is durable enough to withstand the attempt of a break in. Let a locksmith technician know what you’re looking for in terms of the type of lock that would be best for you and your family. If you need convenience, let the locksmith know that is what is most important to you. If you need locks that can be easily re-keyed, they can steer you in the right direction. You only have to ask and they will be happy to help.