Be your own locksmith

After four and a half years, I finally got around to changing the keys to our house. So all you who have a key to our house and figured you could copy it and sell it on eBay for lots of money, you lose. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I probably should have done this within the first week of moving in, but having never owned a house before, it never occurred to me. Fortunately, nobody has broken in and stolen anything, so it was a free lesson.

Upon closer inspection I found that our house not only has two different lock brands, but at least three different keys. We don’t really know because we never received the keys to the two garage doors. But the rear kitchen door and the front door, though both Schlage locks, had different keys. I decided to re-key all the locks, which includes replacing the two sets of Kwikset locks and the mismatched Schlage lock set. I found three matching Schlage lock sets on eBay and then ordered a Change-A-Lock re-key set. This is the part where I give a raving review of Change-A-Lock. What an easy job. It took me 20 minutes and this was the first time I had ever taken a door lock apart. It’s no wonder how locksmiths can charge $10 per lock and still make money. The very small kit included new keys and matched, color-coded pins, and detailed instructions on how to change the pins on any one of five or six lock types. A job so easy, even a monkey could do it. Now that I mention it, maybe that’s why locksmiths charge $10 per lock, because they don’t want to do what a trained monkey can do.

I talked to our local locksmith about doing the job and he quoted me about $360 for the job. With the lock sets I found on eBay, which were identical to the locksmith’s wares, plus the re-key kit, I am able to do this myself for less than $95. The only bad part about it is that I am forced to wait for everything to get shipped to me. Alas, patience for shipping one of my weak points. I order something today, I think tomorrow would be a good day for it to show up on my doorstep.

Comments are closed.