Frequently asked questions...
We've put together a list of questions that we frequently get asked as locksmiths.
We also give you some hints on lock security and explain some common locksmith terms.

Key points:
  • If you lose your keys outside of your home, it's better to be safe than sorry and contact a locksmith
  • If you choose not to change/rekey locks and then have a break-in, your insurance may be void
  • If you've locked the keys inside and the lock can be picked, there is no need to change them
  • For frequently used keys, keep an original key unused and use a copy.
    That way, you can always make a first copy if you need to.
  • I am moving into a new house. Should I get new locks/keys?

    Moving into a house that has had previous owners usually means there may be copies of keys that you don't always get. You don't have to do a complete lock change though; instead simply modify the locks (known as re-keying) for new keys to save you time and money. You should also check your insurance just to make sure that it is not waivered if insufficient locks are at your house.

    Can I get additional locks that can be operated by my existing key?

    In most cases it is possible to manufacture locks that can be operated by an existing key which saves you from carrying a bunch of different keys to open all your locks.

    What is re-keying?

    A re-key is where a Locksmith changes the pins inside your lock so that a new set of keys operate the lock. This is common practice when moving into a new property and you want to make sure the previous tenants can't access the premises. It's also done for the convenience of putting all your house or business locks onto one key instead of carrying multiple keys.

    Are Locksmiths available 24 hours?

    Many Locksmiths provide an on-call emergency service, as Mudgee Regional Locksmiths do. This is usually at premium costs, so if it's not a total emergency, you might want to wait until the morning before you phone.

    What should I do after a break-in?

    Always contact the police first, then call your Locksmith. This allows for a proper crime scene investigation before the Locksmith begins your repairs.

    How much does it cost to get a Locksmith to my place?

    This depends largely on your location and the time of day. However, a good Locksmith will provide a firm quote over the phone - that way there are no nasty surprises.

    What are High Security Locks?

    High security locks are pick proof and drill resistant and designed to restrict key duplication. High security locks are much more expensive, but worth every penny. A good set of locks is a one-time investment and the longer you live in the property, the less it costs to be so well protected.

    What are Retricted Keys?

    A restricted key is one for which a manufacturer has set up a restricted level of sales and distribution. Restricted keys are often protected by patent, which prohibits other manufacturers from making unauthorised productions of the key. In many cases, customers must provide proof of ID before additional keys will be cut.

    I had a duplicate key made at a hardware store and it doesn't work. Why?

    We have a lot of customers who go to a hardware store to have a duplicate key made, and then they come to us to have it done right.

    There are several differences when you purchase a key at a locksmith versus elsewhere.

    Remember, making keys is our livelihood so a Locksmith's key machine is generally better quality and is always kept calibrated.

    However duplicating an already bad key simply makes another bad key. Most locksmith machines will make up to seven generations of a key before it is totally unusable. Other stores can only do three.

    Sometimes, the problem isn't actually with the key but worn-down pins in the lock cylinder. If you're finding that no matter how many keys you get cut, they just won't work in the lock, save yourself the heartache (and wasted money!) and contact your Locksmith to get the lock re-keyed.

    Can I get a copy to a key even if it's marked "Do Not Duplicate"?

    Keys marked "Do Not Duplicate", "Do Not Copy" or "Unlawful to Copy" must have an authorisation letter from the owner or supervisor when requesting duplication. Even though this is the law, locksmiths and key copying kiosks are willing to copy these keys for an extra fee. Technically, these restrictions that are stamped on the keys are merely a deterrent and the only way to secure non-duplication is with a restricted key.
    Copyright 2012 Mudgee Regional Locksmiths | ABN: 30 822 731 713 | Master Lic: 410 742 357

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