Useful Tips

How to open a door without a key: what to do if the key is lost or broken in the keyhole


If the key is lost or broken and there is no duplicate, opening the door lock may be the only way to get inside the room. There are two ways to resolve this situation: try to open the door yourself, or contact a commercial company that provides similar services. There is another option: to invite a locksmith from the Housing Office, but in this case you do not have to count on a quick result, because first you will have to fill out a call request, and then be patient and wait for the visit of the master, the only one for the quarter. Opening the lock yourself will not be easy, especially when it comes to the front door, on which two locks are installed. Let's consider in more detail all possible options.

Opening interior doors

The least problem is opening the interior door, since simple locks are often installed in such structures. Such designs are equipped with a latch on the one hand and a keyhole on the other. This problem is often encountered by parents of curious babies. A child can easily slam a door and turn a knob, but the reverse process may cause difficulties for him. Then parents immediately face two tasks: how to open the lock, and how to keep the door intact. Here's what to do in this situation:

  • inspect the structure of the castle, the shape of the well,
  • pick up a tool that can be inserted inside the well,
  • carefully open the door, being careful not to damage the door leaf and the lock.

The choice of tool depends on the shape of the keyhole. If it is round, then a thin solid object is required: an awl, an unfolded paper clip, a knitting needle or a toothpick. For a well with an elongated shape, you need something flat: a screwdriver, a nail file, scissors or a knife. To open the door lock, you must insert the tool into the well. While pressing on it, turn the doorknob. The main thing is not to overdo it so that the tool does not break and does not get stuck in the well.

There is another way to open a slammed door. To do this, a flat object is inserted between the end of the door and the box, which slightly push the latch towards the lock. It is enough to shift it by only a few millimeters.

If the lock has a borehole on each side, and an inserted key remains in one of them, it will not be difficult to deal with the problem if the design does not provide a threshold. Under the door you need to stick the spread out newspaper as far as possible. Then with a sharp object we push out the key from the well, which should fall on the newspaper. We take it out and open the door.

Opening the front door

A more difficult task is to open the entrance doors, since they usually have at least two locks. It is worth thinking carefully before trying to independently solve a similar problem: an unprofessional approach can adversely affect the condition of the door itself, and replacing the metal entrance structure is not cheap. Getting started, do not forget that the main goal is to open the locked locks, and not to break the door.

The process of this event will depend mainly on the type of castle. If the reason for opening the door is a broken key, you must first remove the chip from the larva. To do this, first pour a few drops of lubricant into the keyhole: WD-40 or machine oil. It will take 15–20 minutes for it to spread evenly throughout the well, after which the chip can be removed. If an insignificant part of the chip protrudes outward, this simplifies the task. It should be gently hooked with pliers or tweezers and, swinging from side to side, pull out. If the chip cannot be caught outside, two thin objects, for example, an awl, will be required. With the points we capture the stuck part, swing it and try to move it from its place. When the chip is removed, you will very soon open the door to the apartment: a good master will make a duplicate of two broken halves, and this will solve the problem.

Now we’ll look at ways to open the door without a key if the key has been lost and there is no way to make a duplicate.

Options for opening a cylinder lock

If you set the task to open the cylinder lock and keep it at the same time in working condition, then you need to possess the virtuoso abilities of the cracker. Such devices have a high level of secrecy, but it will not be difficult for an experienced craftsman to open the cylinder lock with a hairpin or a regular paper clip, although it would be more convenient to use master keys. Consider an emergency: how to open a door lock with a paper clip. We will use it as a master key, but we will still need a “convolution”, which will serve as a screwdriver. The task is to straighten the paper clip, slightly bend the edge with a hook and insert into the larva. Now you have to focus on hearing. Our task: to put the pins of the secret mechanism in the correct position. They must be lifted in turn, using an impromptu master key and convolute. As already noted, this is a very difficult task, which is almost impossible to cope with without proper skills.

There is a less delicate but more affordable way. hack door lock. It will require tools: an electric drill with a drill designed for metal, a flat screwdriver and a hammer. Sometimes the lock can be cracked without drilling, so you should first try this option:

  • insert a flat screwdriver into the larva as deep as possible,
  • with considerable effort, try to turn a screwdriver inside the lock,
  • upon successful attempt to pull out a screwdriver, with which the secret should be removed.

The task is completed - the door can be opened. If this method is unsuccessful, you will have to take a drill. We direct the drill directly into the larva and drill until we pass the whole secret to the end. After that we pull out the larva and open the door.

It is important!The method of drilling or knocking out a cylinder lock is completely powerless if the device is protected against breaking.

Methods for opening a level lock

You can break the lever mechanism or try to open it in a delicate way.

To break the lock, you must remove the main pin of the structure, which is responsible for moving the levers. To do this, you need a drill with a drill for metal, a hook or a bent strong wire, a paper clip. But even with a tool, this task will not be easy, because you need to drill strictly in the place where the reference point of the secret mechanism is located. When it is drilled, you need to insert a bent hook into the hole and turn it. In this case, all the levers freely move, and the door can be opened. As in the case with cylinder mechanisms, this method is completely ineffective for locks that have protection against breaking.

Now we will consider how to open a door lock with a level lock, using master keys or objects that can replace them: paper clips, hair clips, pins. The opening of door locks is carried out with two master keys. The first is inserted into the keyhole until it stops in the main board. The second one is to alternately select the desired position of the levers so that the main pin moves. You should be prepared for the fact that this process can take a lot of time and end in complete failure if you have never opened locks before. Therefore, it is advisable to invite experts.

How to open a castle

If there is a rack and pinion mechanism installed on the entrance structure, it will not be very difficult to open the door lock without a key. Since the lock is well protected from rough impact, we will not consider options for how to crack the front door. Having the usual tool at hand, we can gently open the mechanism in one of three ways.

  1. Take two flat head screwdrivers. They must be thin in order to freely enter the well at the same time. First, we put one screwdriver into the well. We need to put it on the notch of the crossbar and move it to the side. Then we insert the second screwdriver and with it we fix the position of the crossbar. Repeat these steps until the lock is open.
  2. We can open the door locks of the front door using a wooden wedge key. For its manufacture, we need wooden wedges made of soft wood. In size, it must correspond to the parameters of the well. The wedge must be driven into the well, then pulled out. Notches will be visible on the surface of the wood. We'll have to cut the wood a bit to make it look like a key and open the door.
  3. This option is available only if there is a distance between the door leaf and the duct in which the crowbar can be inserted. The tool is placed in the gap between the jamb and the door, then squeeze it all the way. We have a gap where you can insert a flat screwdriver and slide the bolts inside the lock.

Opening the padlock

Padlocks are not very durable, but often enough they are used to protect utility rooms, sheds, cellars. With the loss of keys, such locks are usually hacked because they are not of great value. Here's how to break padlocks:

  1. Take two open-end wrenches and insert them so that each of them captures one handle of the castle. At the same time, the keys must touch the side ribs. The free edges of the keys must be pulled together. As a result, a part of the lock breaks near the latch.
  2. We cut a small plate out of a can, bend one edge. With the bent side, we insert the workpiece into the slot that separates the lock case and the opening handle. Use a screwdriver to push the plate deeper. As a result, the latch opens.
  3. For the third option, we need a self-tapping screw and a nail clipper. We screw the self-tapping screw into the lock cylinder, then we hook it with a nail clipper and pull out the cylinder.


The loss of keys is not a reason to panic, but it is not the most suitable case to urgently master the skills of a locksmith. Opening doors without a key, even if you have the right tool at hand, is no easy task. Inadequate handling of the lock can only aggravate the situation. If you are not confident in your abilities, it would be advisable to contact a specialized company whose specialists have all the necessary equipment and know exactly how to open the front door without a key so as not to spoil the door and lock.

How to open a door without a key: open the door lock

Interior doors, or rather their locks and latches, can be said to be the easiest in terms of opening without a key - locks for internal interior doors usually do not make it difficult, and opening them even to an inexperienced bear cub will not be difficult. The main thing is to know how to do this and which leverage to press.

  1. In most cases, manufacturers foresee the situation with interior doors closed on a latch from the inside - this is a security system that has proven itself well in situations with children. Playing with the lock, they quite often lock themselves and get into an unpleasant situation. If you pay attention, then in the place where the latch should be, there is a small screw for a flat screwdriver - it is its rotation and unlocks the interior door lock.
  2. Another situation in which the question arises of how to open an interior door without a key is somewhat more complicated, but it is solved quite simply. And it occurs in most cases due to a breakdown of the locking mechanism. Let's just say that the door handle does not fulfill its duties and does not move the latch as it should. Such a question is solved with opening the doors as follows - in the place where the latch is located, you need to drive a strong plate between the blade and the box. Pushing it into the slot, push the tab of the lock and open the door.

Naturally, all these manipulations must be performed carefully so as not to damage either the door frame or the canvas - if you squeeze something with a crowbar, then you need to put something under it. In most cases, interior doors and their cladding are not particularly durable and they are easily injured by metal objects, which are usually used to solve the question, how to open an interior door lock without a key? Naturally, all these methods are by no means suitable for opening the lock of the front door without a key - this is generally a separate topic, and you can watch about it in this video.

How to open a keyless door lock: entrance doors

If a broken lock in the interior doors is, as they say, half the trouble, then the lock of the front door that does not open is already a real disaster! Everyone is trying to solve this problem on their own, and the first thing that comes to mind is to enter the apartment through a window. It is good when it is a private house or the first floor of an apartment building - but what if you live on the second floor and above? Climbing without training and skills is a very risky undertaking. First you need to make sure that there are no other options. Or is it just that the whole arsenal of methods has been tried, and nothing helps to solve the question of how to open an iron door without a key?

    The simplest situation is when the key is broken in the keyhole. In no case are we in a hurry and we are not trying to pull the chip out with our hands. The most important thing is not to stick it deep. Instead, we knock on the door to a neighbor (one, then another and, if necessary, a third) and ask for rent pliers, wire cutters, a nail file for an old-style jigsaw. In general, with all this, first we try to grab the broken edge of the key and gently pull it out and, if it does not help, we try to gently pick up the chip with a jigsaw and pull it out of the keyhole a little. In general, all our forces are aimed at removing the chip - this must be done very carefully so as not to damage the secret.

In general, you need to look at the place - the circumstances themselves will tell you what to do and what to do. For example, in some cases, when the lock is closed one revolution, you can try to disengage it from the door frame with a crowbar or crowbar. You can also try to disassemble the lock - first remove the handle, thereby gaining access to the core. You can also open the doors by cutting the hinges - this option is possible if the hinges are not hidden and there are no burglar-proof pins in the doors. Among other things, you can resort to extreme measures - simply put, make physical effort at the door and knock them out. This number works perfectly with wooden doors, but not with metal, and even more so with armored doors - it will not be possible to break them out without a press.

In conclusion of the topic of how to open a door without a key, let me remind you once again that it is better not to do such things yourself. There are organizations that provide professional assistance in this matter - you just need to call and wait for the arrival of a person who will do everything quickly, and most importantly carefully, causing a minimum of damage to your doors.

General recommendations: how to open the lock yourself

If it is not known with what type of mechanism the breakdown occurred, the following actions can be taken to open it (these methods are often used by attackers):

  • To pick up a key - it will turn out only with the cylinder mechanism.
  • Use the master key.
  • Drill - comb the pins and try to open with a screwdriver.
  • Spin - move the door to the left and press (to secure the lock you need to install a bent frame).
  • Remove the fittings and try using a screwdriver.
  • Acid - a special substance is poured into the hole, the door lends itself.

If the key is lost, you should not try to open the lock with the help of someone else's, which at first glance fits: it will most likely get stuck and the problem will only gain momentum.

Types of locking mechanisms and types of keys

To open the lock mechanism without a key with minimal damage, you need to understand the type of lock, its device and then select the necessary method of opening.

In modern iron doors, two types of locks are installed:

  • Mortise - the mechanism box is installed in the middle of the door leaf (which partially violates it),
  • Inserted - differs from the first in that the lock is installed before assembling the doors.

As for the mechanisms used, in metal doors they most often use:

  • Suvaldny - consists of plates that, when you turn the key, become in a certain sequence (the more there are, the more reliable the device,
  • Cylinder (pin) - consists of blocks (washers, pins) which, when turning, act on the crossbars and the door opens.

The pin mechanisms are divided into privacy groups:

  • Low secrecy (up to 10 thousand) - easy to open with master keys. Key type two and one-sided English (butterfly key), cross.
  • Medium (up to 5 million combinations) - opens with a punch card type.
  • High (over 100 billion) - punch card and Finnish key.

Lever mechanisms open with a butterfly key. Степень защиты напрямую зависит от качества, а качество, в свою очередь, от цены.

Вскрытие цилиндровых механизмов

Для начала, речь пойдёт о цилиндровых (штифтовых) типах замочного механизма.

The easiest way to open the type of "English key" (butterfly key):

  • Find a hairpin, paper clip or piece of wire and divide into 2 parts.
  • Bend at a right angle (the bent tip should fit freely into the well).
  • With a bent wire, make tension in the upper part of the mechanism in the direction in which the key rotates.
  • With the straight part of the stud (wire), lift all the pins in turn.
  • Turn the bent part of the wire.

The same technique is used to break open the lock with a double-sided English mechanism, only in addition to the upper, lower pins must be lowered.

The cross-shaped type of the locking mechanism can be opened with a screwdriver. Algorithm of actions:

  • Remove the outer part,
  • Instead of a key, scroll a few times with a screwdriver in the desired direction (to comb the pins).

The Finnish type of locking mechanism is one of the most reliable, it is not so easy to open, even with the help of professional master keys. If this is not an expensive device, you can remove the outer part of the mechanism, pull out the plates and then try opening it with a screwdriver. If the model is expensive, more radical measures are needed (for example, calling rescuers).

Hacking levers and locks with a tongue

Level locks are very popular due to their high degree of reliability. To open such a mechanism without a key:

  • Find a key like that, a heavy object to strike,
  • Insert the key at 75%, tighten and strike.

The first time it may not work, but the method is reliable.

Another type of level lock - single and double row “laser” requires a different approach to solving the problem:

  • Find a small metal plate, scissors (for metal), pliers.
  • Cut a semblance of a key from a segment, make waves with pliers.
  • Insert all the way,
  • To turn.

The first method is also suitable for solving problems with a pump-action lock - it is often used to protect a garage or driveway.

There are more elementary locks, but no less problematic when opening.

Lock with tongue: you can use a plastic card as in a movie, but most likely the door will not open, and the card will break. It is better to use a metal plate, a screwdriver, a flat rod - the main thing is that the device crawled into the opening between the door frame and the door leaf. If it works, you need to press down the tongue and push the door.

The latch lock can be opened in this way: remove the handle (it is necessary to find a device to unscrew the bolts), dismantle the plate that hides the lock core. Then feel for the latch, press and turn the fastening of the door handle.

The key has broken: what to do

There are disappointments in life: the key is broken and stuck in the keyhole. To solve the trouble, you need hands and a set of tools:

This and other ways to open the lock on the video:

This is a complete set of tools to solve the problem. Perhaps only a nail file or screwdriver is useful.

The process of removing the key with a jigsaw file consists of the following actions:

  • Insert the nail file with the teeth up,
  • Slowly move by prying the key,
  • Remove the file with the key.

If after the procedure the lock still does not open, the mechanism may have been damaged.

If you got a butterfly lock, in addition to the aforementioned opening method, you can try this:

  • Make a hole above the well with a drill.
  • Neutralize larvae.
  • Hook the mechanism so that the crossbars move inward,
  • If it did not work out, you can cut them with a grinder.

If the door has backlashes, you can pry it off with a screwdriver, push it down — it suddenly succumbs.

Whatever happens, you should not try to get into the room through the balcony of the neighbors - it is better then to pay for the call of a locksmith if you couldn’t open it yourself.

If the key is lost

When the door does not open and there is no key, you can try to open the lock (see Installing the lock on the front door) with available improvised means that many women carry with them.

For example, a hairpin is suitable. Although it’s not easy to open it, sometimes this method will help. It is necessary to break the hairpin into two parts, after which one should be bent in such a way as to produce a lever that will need to be used to rotate the mechanism.

You can use the second part of the stud as a tool for recessing the pins. Of course, other types of locks cannot be opened in this way.

  • When products are equipped with a mortise lock with a cross-shaped cylinder mechanism, you need to carefully drill a small hole above the key hole. Then, using the master key, it is necessary to raise the stopper and move the bolt hook.
  • If the design has a pin mechanism, you can make a small hole in the cylinder, insert the wire and, turning the pick element, open the door.
  • In cases where the built-in lock is equipped with a tongue, it is necessary to try with a screwdriver or other tool (it is only important that its thickness allows you to put it between the canvas and the box) to press it.
  • Next, turn the knob and open the door. By the way, such locking devices can be opened even with an ordinary plastic card.
  • When to open a lever lock in a wooden door (see How to embed a lock in a wooden door, professional instructions), you must go this way: pull the canvas as far as possible from the box with paper clips or another tool, and move the levers back.
  • When faced with a lock like a latch, then using a screwdriver or other tool, unscrew the screws that secure the handle and remove it. Then, remove the metal socket covering the lock mechanism. And with the improvised tool with a sharp end, we feel for the latch. We click on it, and without missing it, we turn the doorknob.

Attention! When the door lock does not open, you do not need to try to pick up the keys! In most cases, you will only aggravate the situation. The key may get stuck inside. And if this happens you will have to call a specialist.
An extreme option for those who are afraid to forget (lose) the key - always carry a master key. It can be bought at the store. Using a master key is easy even for people who have never opened the locks. However, the master key can also be lost, like the key. Well, how to use it, see the video.

  • When the lock structure is not too strong (see How to choose the entrance door to the apartment), it is easy to destroy it using the available method (for example, hammer the lock cylinder from the inside with a hammer).

True, this method may result in a subsequent repair. The possibility of its use depends on which side the front door will open. When out, it’s very difficult to crack it yourself without the help of a specialist.

  • You can contact the house management and call a locksmith. He will do everything that is written above.
  • In large cities, there are private organizations offering lock opening services (they can also crack). The specialist will come to the rescue earlier than the locksmith, and the work will quite possibly be done more accurately. True, the price of such a service will be rather big.
  • The best way to avoid problems is to prevent them. It is best to put a modern door lock of a special design that does not need keys, and does not have a well at all.
  • Pay attention again! When all efforts to open the door on your own and using improvised means did not lead to a positive result, call a specialist. They gently and quickly open the closed door of the house.

If the key is broken

It happens when, when opening the entrance door, the key inserted into the lock well breaks. This is a serious problem, but quite fixable.

In order not to destroy the locking mechanism, and not to spend money on an expensive replacement in the future, we must try to open it using the methods given later in our material. A set of tools will help you with this. Their specific choice depends on where it should open - inward or outward.

What tools will be needed:


  • First you need to remove the broken key from the keyhole. Ask your neighbors for a jigsaw file. Insert it into the bore of the lock so that the prongs of the nail file look up.
  • Then, slowly rotate the file, trying to hook the key. After - slowly pull the nail file with the key out of the lock hole.
  • When a piece of the key sticks out of the door, you can open it with pliers. They need to catch on the protruding edge of the broken key, carefully turning it to the side where it turned when the door was opened.
  • Opening the door, you need to drag the key on yourself.

Pay attention! Do not take risks when trying to climb from the neighbor’s balcony to your apartment. Realistically assess the situation. This can only be done in advance by taking care of reliable insurance.

  • When they could remove the key, but the lock does not open, for sure, its device broke. You must try to get into the internal mechanism of the locking device. It is not difficult when the door is equipped with an English lock.
  • To get into the internal mechanism, you need to drill a cylinder, and then remove the larvae of the castle.
  • Further using metal hooks, it is necessary to hook the drive mechanism, as a result of which the bolts will fall into the lock case.
  • In the event that lock crossbars are visible between the box and the door leaf, they should be cut with a grinder.
  • When the door has even small backlashes, you need to try to pry it with a crowbar and a strong screwdriver. Such manipulation will determine the most vulnerable point of the door. As a result, it becomes possible to open the door without damaging it.

Our advice! The easiest way to solve the problem is to call a service that deals with opening doors. When the homeowner has evidence of living in an apartment, specialists will help you get into the home.

We hope this article has provided you with enough information on how the front door should open if the key is lost or broken.

Lever and tongue mechanisms

Locks with a double-beaded key are in special demand, because they are considered to be very reliable. But such locking structures are opened with master keys or improvised tools. When opening such locks with a regular key, one beard raises the levers, and the second moves the crossbars. When the device is opened with a master key, the opposite is done: first, the crossbars are loaded, after which the levers are crocheted.

They open a similar castle in a vandal way. First, a suitable key or blank is inserted into the well and, with a hard hit, the levers are knocked out. The result is possible not the first time, but the method is effective. When you need to open the lock with a tongue, a screwdriver or a thin plate will help. The improvised tool is inserted into the gap between the door and the frame. It is necessary to put pressure on the tool and try to push the tab, then open the door.

Cylinder mechanism

To open the lock of this type, you will need master keys that can be made at home. They are 2 parts: one is made in the shape of the letter G and has a flat tongue, and the second looks like a hook. The first item (collar) is placed in the upper part of the lock cylinder and rotates the device in the opening direction, and with the other master keys, pins are pressed in turn until the combination is selected. After that the door will open.

You can open the locking device, also destroying the cylinder mechanism. To do this, remove the cover from the door leaf and get to the core of the device. Then, the protruding part of the cylinder is folded with pliers, and the second half is pushed inward. Then you need to grope the crossbar and move it. Moreover, then hacked constipation cannot be restored.

How to open locks of different shapes

Sometimes you have to open the locks of the utility rooms, in particular, mounted and mortise crossbar devices. Rack locks are often put on garages. And sometimes there are situations when you need to get into the room, and the key is left at home.

In this situation, you can use a thin screwdriver or a spoke. The master keys are placed in the keyhole, and the teeth of the rail carefully move towards the opening. Moreover, it is especially important that the rack level is constantly kept. Otherwise, under the influence of the spring, the crossbars will return to their place.

It is often said, they say, locks with a Phillips key are easy to open with a screwdriver. This feature is available when the device is installed on a mailbox. But if it is a hinged or mortise constipation, then you can not do without a special tool. Such locks have 3 groups of pins, which means that the tool must have the same number of hooks. It is made on the principle of a collet capture. Having placed the device in the keyhole, and having passed several times through the pins, the constipation opens.

Alternative opening options

Knowing the type of mechanism, along with the traditional method of opening the locking device with a special tool, you can try to open the door in other ways:

  • Key selection. This option is suitable for cylinder mechanisms, with levers can be problems.
  • By drilling the secret part (pins), or knocking out the levers and opening with a screwdriver.
  • By pressing the door. Press the latch with a screwdriver or knife until it comes out of the strike plate.
  • Removing the lining, and opening with a screwdriver.
  • Pouring acid or liquid nitrogen into the keyhole, then folding the coagulation mechanism.

Before you open the lock yourself, you need to be sure that you can perform this work without breaking the locking device. Otherwise, it is better to contact specialists.