How To Handle a Broken Off Key Inside a Lock

If you’ve broken your key inside a lock we can help. If you want to try and get the key out yourself here are some ideas:

• Try lubricating the lock to loosen the key.

• If you see a piece sticking out, try using tweezers, needle nose pliers or nail clippers to grasp it.

• If there doesn’t seem to be anything sticking out, try using a thin wire or piece of metal along the teeth of the key to move it. Using a pair of sewing needles or tweezers try pulling it out.

• If this is a rim lock or a lock with euro cylinder you may be able to disassemble it and push the key out from the back using a sharp instrument.

• If this is a padlock or bicycle lock, give the lubricant time to soak in, then slam the lock against a hard surface to see if you can knock the key out.


Remember you should only try these methods if it is your lock or when you have a permission to unlock it from the owner.


Taking a key out of a lock


Broken Key in Padlocks, Bike Locks, D Locks and U Locks:

If you’ve tried all of the above without success and you have the type of lock listed above, you have no choice but to defeat the lock.
• You can try a leverage attack, but this is probably going to damage your bike.

• Using an angle grinder it will only take seconds to get through it. For really solid locks you may need to make two cuts. If you have a friend with power tools you may want to enlist their help, otherwise you can try renting a power tool from your local hardware store. A vice will be needed to hold the lock in place, and take care not to damage your bike in the process.

• You can try using a hacksaw but this is going to take time and effort. If you don’t have one the purchase price will probably be as much as hiring a locksmith for the job.

• If this is the type of lock that closes without a key, you can probably defeat it using a shim. For a U Lock you’ll need to first cut the rubber off the locking end. Using a soda can you can cut a broad strip of aluminum then wrap it around the U and try sliding it into the lock.

• If you are able to maneuver a car jack inside your lock without damaging your bike, you can try spreading the lock open. Most U Locks lock on just one side as the other side is an L Joint. If you can spread it wide enough the L might release, otherwise it could just break open the U. But be careful not to damage your bike in the process.


giving a key


Things you should have for doing it yourself

• The appropriate tools
• Protective glasses and gloves should be worn
• A valid ID like your driver’s license or passport in case law enforcement spots you trying to break this lock and begins to question you
• Your mobile phone in case you need to call a friend or contact a locksmith

Disclaimer: Some of these tactics have proven to be more successful then others. We can’t guarantee these methods will work nor take any responsibility for damages caused by trying them. If you’re not confident you can do it yourself it’s always recommended that you call a professional locksmith.


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