How to Remove a Stuck Key in a Pin Tumbler Lock? Complete Guide

You may need to use a pencil or a lubricant to remove a stuck key from a pin tumbler lock. Graphite powder is a good choice for this purpose. Before removing a pin tumbler lock, you may want to dismount the lock and tailpiece screws. If this is impossible, you can also try using a broken key to unlock the lock. This method may be too dangerous for most locks, so use caution!

stuck key in lock


Graphite powder is an excellent lubricant

Locksmiths have long used graphite powder to lubricate locks. This substance has a similar effect to grease but is less expensive. Once the graphite is loaded into the lock, it will help the key slide through. The graphite is already in chunk form, so it may not be easy to slide into the lock. If this is the case, a twisting motion will help to insert it. Eventually, the graphite will be ground into a powder, making the key easily removable.

Graphite powder is a great lubricant for stuck keys in locks. However, it’s messy and can stain your clothes or pockets. If you have a carpet nearby, you should avoid using this method unless it’s necessary. Instead, try a synthetic lubricant like PTFE, which doesn’t make a mess. It also won’t stain your keys or cause stains.

stuck key in lock

Graphite powder is an excellent swab lubricant for stuck keys in locks. It can be applied to the lock’s keyway and works to free the key from the lock’s plug. Graphite powder also dries very quickly, so it’s ideal for sticking keys in locks that require little force to open.

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Another great lubricant for stuck keys in locks is graphite powder. This powder is superior to oil as it doesn’t leave any residue inside the lock, which will attract dirt and other debris and cause a malfunction in the lock mechanism. Graphite powder requires very little lubrication and can be squeezed into the keyhole by pressing it into the sides.

Graphite powder is an excellent squirt for stuck keys in locks. It is easy to use and comes in soft plastic bottles. You can even squirt a small amount into the lock and turn the key in and out several times to lubricate the entire lock. When the lubricant dries up, it’s still usable and safe to use.

Dismounting lock and tailpiece screws may be necessary

If the stuck key cannot be removed by unscrewing the screws, it may be necessary to dismount the lock. To do this, unscrew the tailpiece screw and remove the lock’s plug. Once you have removed the plug, you can align the pins of the shell with the bottom of the key. A slightly rotated key may make it difficult to align the pins. If this is the case, you can try pushing inward on the plug with one hand while removing the key. Pressing over the pins will serve as a reference. Then, the plug should come out of the lock, and you are ready to rekey.

stuck key in lock

Using a pencil to remove a broken key

When you have a broken key in a lock, a common solution is to use a pencil to pry it out. Mechanical pencils usually have thin nozzles, making it easy to access the graphite inside the lock, which is the key’s “core.” Old wooden pencils require more effort. After prying out the key, remove the plastic piece using pliers.

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Paperclips are also helpful for breaking out keys. Thinner paperclips give you a better grip, and you can push the broken piece out with them. You may have to try this several times before getting the key out, so start with a thin one and work your way up. You’ll notice that the key is slowly retracting from the lock.

Another way to remove a broken key is to use a small drill bit. Simply drill the side of the broken key until you can grasp it and pry it out. You can also use pliers to finish the job if this is ineffective. Be sure to use lubricant when using paper clips. Be careful not to push too hard, or you could cause further damage to the lock.

You can use a regular pencil if a graphite plug is unavailable. You can use a pencil lead if a graphite plug isn’t needed to open the lock. The lead of a pencil is a natural lubricant, which can help release the key from the lock. This method is useful if you cannot pry a key out of the lock without using a lubricant.

Using a lubricant to remove a pin-tumbler lock

Graphite powder can be a useful lubricant for locks. It can help you remove the stuck key by freeing the plug. If this doesn’t work, you can also use ice or graphite powder to try to remove the stuck key. However, it’s best to use a lubricant that doesn’t leave residue inside the lock.

The best way to remove a stuck key is by applying a lubricant to the key and the lock’s chambers. Spray the lubricant over the key and the keyhole, and then shake the key a few times. This usually works. When you are done, wipe the key with a rag, and you’re ready to go. You’ll probably need to repeat the process several times.

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If the problem persists, try a different lubricant. You may have an incorrectly cut or worn key if the lock doesn’t turn. In this case, a lubricant might help, but it is best to consult a professional locksmith to avoid using WD-40 as it will damage the lock. You might also need a new lock if you don’t have a spare key.

Another way to remove a stuck key is by using super glue. To do this, you’ll need a tool like a match, a thin piece of wire, or a straightened bobby pin. Hold the object over the broken key and press it gently against the edge. Don’t try to force the key any further into the hole. It might become stuck again, but it is easy to remove if you know how to do it correctly.

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