Lubes & Locks

Well, I’m feeling pretty accomplished at the moment! Don’t let my confidence fool you though, I’m pretty sure my daughter could have figured this one out, but not without trying… which is where most people fail.

Our back door has a deadbolt and regular doorknob lock.  Within the last month or two, both began to have issues.  The bottom lock refused to lock at all and the deadbolt was sticking to the point of us having to open the door and push on the lock in order to get the key to turn.  This was an inconvenience at best until we learned of a string of robberies not far from us.  Insert: Priorities.

I figured I had a couple options… I could call and have the lock repaired by someone who knows what they’re doing (and bitch about the price).  I could take the locks off completely and walk into a home improvement store, asking some friendly grandpa with an orange apron what to do (and feel like an idiot child).  OR I could take the whole damn thing apart and pray for an obvious issue that YouTube can tell me how to fix (since I know NOTHING about locks and am generally non-handy).  I went with option 3 as this left me with the worst case scenario of having to revert back to option 1 or 2 if I couldn’t figure it out.

Where’s my screwdriver?

I started a little backwards and did a YouTube search for “How to fix a deadbolt lock” and picked one that had the word “stick” in the title, since that’s what our lock was doing.  Nothing really seemed to apply to my guesses as to the problem, but I did take away one key nugget:  Never use liquid lube in a door lock.  You’re supposed to use dry lube (go ahead, chuckle you dirty minds …if you’re anything like me ha!)  I KNOW I’ve taken to spraying some WD40 and/or cooking spray (I know…go me) over the years to loosen things up…or so I thought.  This information would prove to be helpful.

The deadbolt, once taken apart, seemed to be sticking due to rubbing of the inside mechanism.  I noticed it was a little gunked up (thank you cooking spray) so I got some Goo Be Gone from the utility room, put a little on an old toothbrush and scrubbed every piece I could reach. Once done, I put the whole thing back together again and … TADA … success!  I repeated this with the bottom lock and it worked as well.

So takeaways of the day:

  • Don’t hesitate to TRY before calling in the big guns
  • Don’t use liquid lube in door locks
  • When all else fails, clean it up real nice!

What project have you been putting off because you’re afraid to try and fix it?  Tackle it today.


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