Unlike most other trades, a locksmith is someone you probably won’t see very often. In fact, we’re pretty sure a lot of our customers would be happy if they never saw us again! But people will always lock themselves out while there are locks and keys, locks will need to be changed after break-ins and blocks of flats will always need master keys and security solutions. And so locksmiths will hang around for a good while! But before you call one, there are a few things we would like you to know, and some misconceptions we want to clear up.
Myth 1 – Lockpicking Is Easy
Sure, the movies make it look easy. Someone whips out a hairpin or a credit card, gives it a few jiggles and the door is open. But the reality is far from that, and if you try lockpicking this way you’ll likely end up with a brief credit card jammed in the door.
Picking locks is something that requires a lot of training, as well as specialised tools that are designed to help us operate the locks properly without damaging them. That’s why locksmiths make it look easy – we have the right equipment and we know how to use it! And if picking the lock won’t work for any reason, we can drill it out, so a locksmith will always be able to get you back into your home.
Myth 2 – All Locksmiths Charge The Same
This is a bit like asking ‘how long is a piece of string’. Locksmiths run a business just like anyone else, which means they choose their rates carefully. The rate you pay a locksmith will depend on things like their experience and skill level, the area you’re in, the complexity of the job and even the hour of the day. So it’s a mistake to assume you know what a locksmith is going to cost without actually speaking to one.
What we can say is that generally the first cheap locksmiths, the ones with prices that seem too good to be true? They’re usually not worth it. This type of locksmith will often favour drilling out locks as the first step, rather than the last resort. And while this does get you into your property quickly, it also means you now have to buy a replacement lock (maybe even a door if they did a sloppy job) and pay someone to fit it for you. Overall, they’re generally not worth it. At My Locks, we will only drill out a lock if we’ve exhausted all other options.
Myth 3 – All Locksmiths Are Qualified
This might surprise you, but there is currently no legislation governing the locksmithing industry. Absolutely none. That means anyone can buy a lockpicking set on Amazon and claim to be a locksmith. There’s no requirement for qualifications or accreditations to trade as a locksmith. So how do you know you’re getting someone trustworthy?
Most quality locksmiths will be members of a trade body, like the Master Locksmiths Association, and will hold some qualifications to show that they are legitimate. Because there is no regulation, professional locksmiths tend to go out of their way to prove their credentials and earn the trust of customers. Whereas Bob down the road who happens to have a set of lock picks doesn’t!
Myth 4 – All Locksmiths Offer The Same Service
While it’s true that any locksmith worth their salt will be able to get you in your front door, that’s not the only thing a locksmith can do. In fact, most locksmiths will have a wide suite of services for both domestic and commercial clients and will be able to help with a number of areas of security. For example, some locksmiths will have trained in auto locksmithing, which means they can help you if your car key snaps in the ignition. Auto locksmiths are generally rarer because the equipment needed to do it is expensive, so you won’t see as many of them roaming around.
Equally, some locksmiths won’t offer out of ours of emergency service, or won’t service commercial customers. Just like any other business, every locksmith is different, which is why it’s important you do your research and find one that will be able to help you.
Myth 5 – Locksmiths Are Only For Emergencies
Yes, locksmiths are handy in an emergency. When you were popping to take the bins out and you got yourself locked out with little Timmy asleep upstairs, a locksmith can be your Kingstown in shining armour. But that’s not the only thing we do. We also help with routine security concerns like changing the locks when you move house, updating your window locks and installing letterbox cages. We can also help block managers cut down their key supply by installing master suites, or help companies improve their physical security. So yes, please do call a locksmith in an emergency. But have our number saved for those non-emergencies too.
Hopefully, that’s cleared some things up! At My Locks we are definitely more than a one-trick pony and are always on hand to help with any lock or security concern you may have. If you would like to know more, just get in touch with the team today to have a chat.