If your key breaks off in the lock, would you know what to do? Calling a locksmith could burn unnecessary money. Instead, if you can’t pull out the blade end of the key with your fingers, try using one of the following techniques.
Spray penetrating oil into the keyhole for lubrication. Insert a pair of needle-nosed pliers into the keyhole and turn it back to the vertical position. Grip the broken key and pull it out. This is most likely to work if the key broke at its head and the whole key blade is inside of the lock mechanism.
Insert a scroll saw blade or jig saw blade into the keyhole, teeth down. As you push it, you should be able to feel the teeth grab a hold of the cuts in the key blade. Pulling it out gently should pull the broken key out with it.
Insert a flathead screwdriver or a small blade into the keyhole and twist it to operate the lock with the broken key inside, as if it were attached to the end of the screwdriver. You can use this method to lock and unlock your door as needed until the issue is permanently fixed. However, only leave your apartment in trustworthy hands since anyone else can use the same method to unlock your door.
If none of the above tactics work, equip your drill with a ¼” drill bit and drill into the lock cylinder up to the depth of your key blade. Pry out as much remaining metal as possible and remove the lock set in favor of a replacement (along with new keys) from the hardware store.
Want to learn more about apartment living? Call Key City Insurance at (801) 840-9555 for more information on Salt Lake City renters insurance.