Often referred to as “changing the locks,” rekeying is actually a different and much simpler process. Rather than changing the lock hardware itself, rekeying only involves changing the internal mechanism of the lock. Once the process is complete, your old key will no longer work, but your new key will.
When to Rekey
Rekeying your locks can greatly improve the security of your building, and some experts recommend doing it every few years as a safety precaution. Below are some scenarios where having your locks rekeyed by a professional locksmith may be a good idea:
- You’ve moved into a new home or apartment. If you’ve just moved to a new place of residence that has had previous owners or tenants, you may not know who else has a key copy.
- Other people have copies of your key. In the past, you may have given spare keys to cleaning staff, construction crews, roommates, and ex-partners. If several copies are floating around (or if you’ve undergone a bad breakup recently), rekeying allows you to regain complete control over who has access to your home.
- You’ve lost a key. If a spare key has been misplaced or seemingly disappeared, it’s likely a good idea to have your locks rekeyed just in case.
Remember, it only takes half an hour for someone to make a copy of your key, so if you have any safety concerns, having a professional locksmith rekey your locks can give you valuable peace of mind.
Rekeying locks is usually much less expensive than changing the locks since it’s a matter of replacing a few pins rather than the lock itself. Additionally, you don’t have to pay for new hardware. In fact, many home warranty plans will cover the expenses of rekeying.
There are non-financial benefits as well. You can keep all your current locks, which likely match the decor of your home and may not be manufactured anymore. The process is also customizable—for example, you could decide to have one master key open all the locks at your home or office instead of multiple.