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The Best Way To Remove A Broken Key From A Door Lock

In our everyday life we’re dealing with locks and keys on a common basis but what happens when a key breaks inside a lock? This situation can be very inconvenient  frustrating and probably raise questions about the reasons and the steps to take. 

This article will provide answers about why keys break in locks, exploring the best methods for removal, estimating the time it might take and considering options when you don’t have a spare key.

Why Do Keys Break In Locks?

Most common reason for keys to break inside locks is excessive force. Over time repeated use can cause small fractures on key causing damage to its structure and if a key is made from lower quality materials it becomes more susceptible to breaking and by applying too much force while turning the key especially if it’s stuck or the lock mechanism is jammed it can cause the key to snap. 

Environmental factors such as corrosion from moisture or extreme temperatures can also make to the key weak and fragile, also a poorly cut or terrible duplicate may increase the option of breaking.

What are my options?

When facing a situation when your key breaks inside the lock your options can depend on the few thongs:


Take a good look at the lock and assess how much of the key is stuck inside the lock and whether any part is sticking out.

Availability of Tools

Check if you have tools like needle nose pliers or a small jigsaw blade which can be useful in removing the broken piece.

Skill Level

Consider your own skill and experience in dealing with similar situations and if you’re not confident enough it’s better to seek professional help.

Type of Lock

Different locks may require different approaches as a standard door lock might be easier to work with compared to a high security lock.


Determine how urgently you need access and if it’s an emergency we recommend to call a locksmith immediately.

Cost Considerations

Consider the cost of trying to remove the key yourself which can lead to more damage versus hiring a professional locksmith.

Professional Help

DIY methods are available but seeking professional help is our best recommended choice and a locksmith service is the safest and most efficient way to deal with a broken key in a lock.

How Long Will It Take To A Locksmith To Remove A Broken From A Door Lock?

The duration it takes for a locksmith to remove a broken key from a door lock can change significantly based on several factors and a skilled. 

locksmith can extract a broken key within 30 minutes to an hour but the specific time depends on the complexity of the lock, the extent of the key break and the condition of the lock to begin with. 

If the broken piece is easily accessible and the lock is in a good condition the process can be quicker.

What If My Key Is Broken And I Have No Spare?

If your key is broken and you don’t have a spare we highly recommend to follow these steps:

Get Professional Help

Contact a certified locksmith as they can remove the broken key and create a new one.

Lock Replacement

If the lock is damaged and out of work or if you prefer an upgrade for your security consider replacing the entire lock.

Key Duplication Services

If the process of removing the broken key was successful and you have the broken pieces sometimes by gluing them a new key can be duplicated.

Digital or Smart Locks

If the lock is out of order consider upgrading to a digital smart lock which doesn’t require traditional key and offers alternative access methods like codes or smartphone apps.

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