It’s not until your lock starts to show signs of deterioration that the thought performing lock maintenance crosses your mind. By being proactive and maintaining the health of your lock you will ensure it protects you for longer. If your lock is playing up a bit you might want to try cleaning it before you rush out and replace it. Pulling the lock apart and cleaning it thoroughly is advised if the lock is sticking lots. Below is a quick 3 step guide to cleaning and maintaining your locks without pulling it apart.
Clear out the dust
Bits of dust and dirt can make their way into the lock. This causes issues with the lock pins doing their job. As the moving parts of your lock get clogged up your lock mechanism jams. Cleaning out the dust can be done with some canned air. Avoid pointing the aerosol air cleaner straw directly into your lock as these cans release moisture. Moisture can cause rust if it builds up on the interior of the lock. Causing future problems and the need for lots more lock maintenance.
BONUS TIP: Clean the outside of the lock first with a dry toothbrush or a cloth. Remove and loosen dirt by brushing it away and avoid pushing into the keyhole.
Lubricate the lock
Avoid using petroleum based lubricants on your lock as it can impede lock performance, also dirt and grime will stick to it. Instead use a graphite or silicon based lubricant. Only a tiny amount is needed as you don’t want to saturate the lock. Just enough is needed so that the mechanism works smoothly. To avoid using too much apply to the key instead of spraying directly into the lock.
Bonus Tip: A graphite pencil can be used in a pinch. Rub the lead pencil over the edges of your key and then insert into the keyhole and wiggle it about.
Work it and wipe it
Insert the key in and out and turn it a few times so that the lubricant is worked throughout the lock. Wipe away any excess lubricant that may be around the keyhole or on the key. Try to avoid touching the part of the key that inserts into the lock so that you don’t transfer any oils or grime from your fingers.