Residential Locks: Understanding the Different Components

17 May 2017
 Categories: , Blog

The front door of your home is the first and last line of defence against intruders who are trying to enter the property to steal your belongings or harm your family. For this reason, it is vital that you understand the different components which make up a lock, the reasons these components may fail and the importance of contacting a locksmith.

The strike plate

The strike plate is the part of the lock which is attached to the body of the door. Because the exterior of the strike plate can be seen, they come in a range of decorative styles and sizes. While the strike plate itself is not a critical component of the lock, it still forms a line of defence against intruders. By ensuring that the strike plate is securely attached to the door, you can help to prevent someone removing it to gain access to the inner workings of the lock.

The latch 

The latch is the metal comment which is attached to the door frame. It is typically located behind the strike plate. The latch features a metal bolt which extends out into the door frame. When the door is in the locked position, the latch prevents the door from being opened. When in insert your key and turn the lock cylinder, this withdraws the latch and allows you to gain entry. Over time, latches can suffer from wear and can become sticky or begin to fail. If you have any problems with the latch lock on your door, you should contact a residential locksmith immediately. If the latch fails, you are unable to secure your front door.

The lock cylinder

The lock cylinder is where the important business happens. When you insert your key into the barrel of the lock cylinder, the shape of the key presses on several pins within the lock. When these pins are in the correct configuration, you will be able to rotate the key in the lock to withdraw the latch and open the door. However, if you damage your key or if the cylinder becomes worn, you may notice that you have some difficulty opening the door. You should not attempt to turn your key in a lock using force, as it may snap and become trapped in the cylinder. If this problem persists, you should contact a locksmith so he can install a new lock cylinder.

If you would like further home security advice, you should contact a professional locksmith service who will be happy to help.