How To Rekey a Door Lock

Most people rekey a door lock for the sake of comfort. With rekeying, you can set all the door locks in your house to be the same. That means you’ll only use one key instead of a set of keys. Other people, however, will rekey a door lock for safety. Whatever your reason is, there are only two general ways to rekey a door lock—through a locksmith or through a rekey kit.

Rekeying through a Locksmith

Door locks are composed of complex mechanisms that only professional locksmiths can decipher. No wonder why people leave the rekeying job to the locksmiths. Just make sure that you will choose an experienced locksmith. It’s also ideal to choose a professional who is recommended by someone you know.

However, hiring a locksmith for this job can be costly. Removing the door locks yourself will not lower down the professional fee, though. But at least, you can save yourself from the hassles of understanding the complexities of door locks.

Rekeying with a Kit

Locksmiths usually charge on a per-lock basis. So it will be costly if you want to rekey many door locks. For this reason that more people choose to use a rekey kit and do the rekeying by themselves. Here are some tips when rekeying through a kit:

  • Buy the right brand of rekey kit. You can’t properly rekey a door lock if you will use a different brand. The rekey kits in the market are made for specific brands of door locks. Ask the nearest hardware stores or home centers for a rekey kit. There are online suppliers of rekey kits, too. They usually have wider choices, only that you’ll spend extra for the shipping.
  • Order extra pins, if needed. Most rekey kits can rekey up to six door locks. If you need to rekey more locks, then you should order for extra pins. More pins will mean more locks that can be rekeyed.
  • Prepare a screwdriver. Most of the rekey kits have complete tools and materials for a successful rekeying. These usually include two keys, tools, pins, and instructions. Only the screwdriver is missing from most of the kits.

A kit includes a detailed instruction on how you can rekey a specified door lock brand. But to give you an idea, here’s how to typically rekey door locks using a kit:

  • Remove the knob off the door. Use the wire tool, which is included in the rekey kit. You need the door’s key also to remove the knob. There is a retainer ring tool in the kit. Push this against the lock’s retainer ring. This will cause popping off the ring and it will be removed from the cylinder. Take off the cylinder plug, too, by using the key and pulling it out of the cylinder.
  • Rekey the door lock. Remove the old pins first and then insert one of the keys in the kit. Put the new pins in the cylinder plugs. Use needle-nose pliers to easily grab the small pins.
  • Put back the door lock pieces together. Simply reverse the steps to finish rekeying the door lock.

Still follow the set of instructions included in your purchased rekey kit. The guide above is only the typical way of rekeying door locks using a common kit. It doesn’t matter what you follow as long as you can successfully rekey the door lock.


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