If you've been locked out of your home or car, it's always good to call a locksmith to get you back in rather than trying to jimmy the lock or otherwise break into the house or vehicle. It's very easy to permanently damage a lock that could otherwise be opened by a professional, break a window to the house or car, or even hurt yourself. However, there are a few things you might try before you decide to call a locksmith to get you back in; note a few of these here for the next time you're locked out.
1. Lubricating spray
Sometimes locks get jammed because they have a buildup of dust, dirt, motor oil from the car, rust flecks from older locks, or other debris. The lock itself isn't actually broken, but the pins and tumblers inside can't move against this build-up. A good lubricating spray, such as WD-40 or another similar brand, can sometimes do the trick. A strong blast of air can also sometimes clear out the lock area. If you have something like that in your trunk or shed, or are locked out of your car outside a store that sells any type of lubricating spray or high-pressure spray, you might try that to see if the lock gets cleared.
2. Smoothing down your key
It may seem like a trick that would work only in the movies, but some keys made of cheap materials may get burrs or other deformities on the sides and along the ridges. These may be small but may still get in the way of the key sliding into the lock and working those tumblers and pins. Don't use actual sandpaper or anything too rough on the key as this can cause it to become misshapen, but try sliding the side of the key against a curb other surface just to smooth it down a bit.
3. Warm liquid
If you've been locked out of your home or car during wintertime, it may be that ice has formed inside the lock and is blocking your key. A small bit of any warm liquid can usually do the trick to clear it; even some water you have in a bottle in your handbag or pocket that is room temperature can be warm enough to melt that ice. Pour the water very slowly into the lock as much as possible and then try the lock again quickly, before that liquid has time to freeze!
For more information, contact a business such as Border Locksmiths.