The Warning Signs
Your door lock may be giving you warning signs that could pinpoint as to why your key keeps turning in door lock. Also, it might help you prevent the problem from reoccurring in the future. Think of these warning signs as symptoms of an impending problem. Because it is often the case that your door lock will show signs of damage before something stops working. When the lock stops working the way it was built to, you usually arrive at a situation where your key keeps turning in door lock. Here are some common signs that you should look out for when your key takes you for a ride.
Reasons Why Your Key Keeps Turning in Door Lock
A Loose Door Handle
- The handle gets loose because a screw is starting to get free from the thread. Unfortunately, most people overlook this sign and finally do a 360-degree rotation.
Lock Cylinder Gradually Moves
- Similar to the loose door handle, this is a sign that there is something wrong within the door lock mechanism. If it is caught early, the problem can be rectified, but if it is allowed to continue, it can cause further damage. For instance, if you are still able to lock your door, but you notice the cylinder is moving. Or if the entire lockset is moving, then there is a possibility that the set screws are loose. If this is the case, it should be taken care of before it causes further issues within the lock.
Key Becomes Increasingly Harder to Turn In Lock
- If it becomes harder to rotate your key in your lock, you could be facing potential door lock failure. This is often a sign that the parts involved with engaging the lock bolt are not working properly. Attempting to force your lock to work under these circumstances can easily result in a broken key or broken lock. Regardless of the outcome, you will now have one hefty bill that you’ll have to deal with.
Key Door Lock Mechanism
- If this is determined at an early stage, the problem can be fixed easily. Should it continue, the result may cause severe damage to the lock mechanism, sometimes changing the entire lock. With a movable lock cylinder, if you can still lock the door, there is a possibility that the set of screws are still working.
Broken Lock Tailpiece
- If there is a broken tailpiece (the thinner part of the key) in your door lock, then there is a chance that the key will keep turning in the lock. A lock is engaged through a series of actions and mechanisms that all depend on each other to function properly. The key is inserted into the lock cylinder to allow the lock bolt/latch to be engaged. The tailpiece of the lock is a central feature in this process, and it is an important part of every door lock. The counterpart of the tailpiece is the cam, and this is usually located in mortise locks or euro cylinder locks.
Improper Door Lock Installation
- Another reason why your key keeps turning in the lock is that your door lock installation wasn’t handled right. Now, I am not pointing fingers or saying that anyone is incompetent. But this is often the end result when individuals with little to no experience attempt to install the locks themselves. Ideally, if you are unsure about how to do this, you should reach out to a locksmith who is skilled at installing new door locks. Not only will the job be quick, but you won’t end up paying unnecessary costs associated with door lock installations.
- The cam is a large feature in mortise locks and should not be confused with cam locks that are often used on cabinets and desks. Hence, a broken cam within your door lock will also result in your key continuously turning in the door lock. The cam and the tailpiece are sometimes referred to interchangeably within the lock community, but they are two different things. The reason why they are often confused with one another is because they accomplish similar tasks within a locking mechanism. As pointed out above, there is a specific part of the locking mechanism that is responsible for engaging the bolt and operating a lock.
Using the Wrong Cam
- This is a less likely scenario, but still very possible. Utilizing the wrong cam in a door lock mechanism will result in your key continuously turning in the door lock without being able to operate it. Cams and tailpieces are such integral parts of locks, which usually means that they are not all made alike. This is especially true when you consider the fact that there are so many different lock brands on the market. And each one has a cam style that they prefer to use within their locks.
Tips and Parting Thoughts
We hope you have found this article to be useful in identifying why your key keeps turning in door lock. Keep in mind that recognizing the problem is only one half of the solution. The next step will be to contact the appropriate locksmith to help you handle this issue. If you are unsure about your abilities to handle this on your own, then do not tamper with your door lock yet.
Call a locksmith and tell them about your problem in detail so that they can properly assist you. Neglecting to do so will potentially leave you with a damaged lock. The solution to your woes when a key keeps turning in door lock is fairly easy to get and solve. But this often requires an experienced locksmith’s touch to get it done right without any damage to your property.
Trying to remove it yourself without the right tools when you can’t see what you are doing could damage the lock. It is also possible that there is a more serious problem, such as a worn-out pin chamber or a corroded pin. A locksmith will need to fix these problems. You may also need to have the cylinder replaced.
Our Convenient Lock Service
Quick Locksmith Los Angeles is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to help if your key will not turn in lock. Our service isn’t just for house or commercial locks, but for automobile locks as well. We can diagnose the problem and fix it so you can regain access to your home/vehicle quickly. Give us a call today to get a free quote at (323) 450-2142.