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How To Replace A Jammed Deadbolt Lock

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Deadbolt locks provide more security your home than a traditional door latch, which makes it important for them to operate properly. Deadbolts get jammed in wooden door frames because humidity shrinks the wood, and they also get jammed if you try to force the lock open. Sometimes, the only way you have to fix a deadbolt is to replace it. Here are some tips to replace a jammed deadbolt lock.

Prepare to Work

For this project, you need:

  • flat-head screwdriver
  • Phillips screwdriver
  • thin knife (optional)
  • hammer
  • graphite pen
  • deadbolt lock kit

You need access to the door from the inside of the house to remove the screws that secure the deadbolt. If you are locked out, enter through another door, or find an unlocked window.

Another option to get into your home is to enter through a door window. Ask a neighbor for a slotted screwdriver, and slide it below the window pane. Exert upward force on the screwdriver, and avoid damaging the frame when you remove the pane. Don't forget to put the door window pane back later.

Remove the Old Deadbolt

Once you gain access to the lock from the inside, look for two screws on the deadbolt cylinder, loosen them with the screwdriver, and remove the cylinder. If there's a faceplate, insert a screwdriver or thin knife under it to remove it. To remove stuck cylinders, insert a flat-head screwdriver below the cylinder edge, and pull the cylinder gently from the door.

Access the lock from the outside, and pull the exterior faceplate off the door. The exterior deadbolt cover should not have any screws to remove. Remove the exterior deadbolt lock cylinder in the same manner as you removed the interior lock cylinder.

Look for a small plastic of metal hole in the center from where you removed the lock. Press the screwdriver in the circle to release the backset, then pull the lock out of the frame. If the backset doesn't free the deadbolt, tap lightly on the side of the screwdriver with a hammer.

Attach the New Deadbolt

Slip the new deadbolt in the door edge, then tighten the mounting screws with the screwdriver. Slide the exterior cylinder connecting rod in the backset, and insert the exterior cylinder against the door.Install the interior cylinder in the same manner, and tighten the mounting screws. Test the deadbolt for proper operation.

If the lock does not operate smoothly, loosen the mounting screws ¼ of a turn with the screwdriver, then test the lock again. Lubricate the extended lock with graphite pen. Your new dead bolt lock should work properly. If the lock doesn't work, or you don't trust your skill, hire a locksmith, like Anderson Lock & Safe, LLC .