Electronic smart locks have become extremely popular. You never have to worry about forgetting your key, and you can easily set and change access codes at will. It is easy to let the babysitter or dog walker have access only when needed, and you will never get stuck with a broken key. Still, any lock can have problems. Here are some common issues for electronic locks.
To avoid leaving you locked out if there is a power outage, most electronic locks use batteries. If yours suddenly stops working, it might be a simple matter of needing to change the batteries. Use your override key (if you have one), and then insert a fresh set of batteries. In many cases, this will solve the problem.
Though you don’t need to remember to carry a key, you do need to remember the code you set for the lock. Forgetting your code is especially likely if you frequently change it. Minimize this risk by writing down your code somewhere safe or noting it in your phone. If you find yourself in this situation, check the owner’s manual or contact the manufacturer. There is likely a way to reset the code.
Occasionally, the keypad or touchscreen will stop communicating with the actual lock. To fix this issue, remove the batteries for one minute and then re-insert them. Most of the time, this will reset the lock and reestablish communication. If it fails, contact the manufacturer for help.
Although they don’t use physical keys, electronic locks still rely on physical locking mechanisms. Common mechanical problems include:
Strike plate issues: The strike plate is the metal piece that the door latch sinks into. If the strike plate is not perfectly aligned, there will not be a smooth entry. Over time, the strike plate can come loose and sag to the point that the latch cannot operate. Make sure the strike plate is straight and not tilted, and then tighten the screws.
Hinge Problems: Many lock issues are actually caused by the door hinges. If the hinges are not properly attached, the door can gradually sag, eventually interfering with the alignment between the door latch and the strike plate.
Dirty or Unlubricated Lock: Door locks should be cleaned regularly with a damp rag, and lubricated once a year with a dry lubricant. Gunk and debris can build up on the door latch and strike plate, making it impossible for the lock to operate.
If you are unable to troubleshoot the issue on your own, call a trusted locksmith. A skilled professional can diagnose and fix the problem with your electronic lock, quickly gaining entry to your home or business.
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