Locked Out: 3 Ways To Remove A Broken Key From A Lock

23 May 2016
 Categories: , Blog

If disaster strikes and your key breaks as you turn it in your front door, you might believe that there is no way to remove it. However, if you remain calm and use the techniques outlined below, you stand a chance of removing the broken key from the lock, which will enable you to gain entry to your home.


If part of the key is still protruding from the lock, you may be able to use a pair of tweezers to remove it. You should grip the end of the key with the tweezers and attempt to gently wiggle it free. If the key is not protruding from the lock, you should avoid using tweezers, as this may push the broken key deeper in the lock, which will make it much more difficult to remove.

Super Glue

The idea of using super glue to unblock a lock might seem a little counter intuitive. However, if you have some glue to hand, you can place a small amount onto the end of a thin object such as a wire or matchstick. Touch the end of the wire or match against the surface of the broken key, apply gentle pressure and hold it in place. Once the glue is set, you should be able to extract the key as you remove the wire or matchstick. Again, this method works best when you can see part of the broken key protruding form the lock. If the broken part of the key is not visible you should not use this method, as it can cause the inside of the lock to become jammed up with glue.

Probing and Pulling

If you cannot see the end of the broken key sticking out of the lock, the best approach is to use two pieces of thin wire. You should insert the wires into the lock and attempt to get them on either side of the key. Apply pressure to the wires so they grip the key and then pull them towards you. This should hopefully move the key slightly out of the lock. You will need to repeat this process to slowly edge the key out of the lock. 

If you cannot remove the broken key using any of these methods, you should call a locksmith. The locksmith will be able to assess the position of the broken key within the lock and then use professional tools to remove it.