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How To Remove A Broken Key From A Lock

Keys, no matter how strong they were built, have the tendency to wear out and sustain damage over time.

Unfortunately, there is no telling when a key would break or malfunction.

Sometimes, you are in the middle of opening a door lock then your key suddenly breaks which can feel like an emergency situation.

There is no need to panic because we, Speedlock, will guide you through the steps of removing a broken key from a lock.

We have simple ways you can try on your own, but if you are reluctant to do so, feel free to give us a call.

You can expect our team of professional locksmiths in Hamilton to be on their way at your doorsteps right after your call.

Possible reasons why your keys are weak

A normal key is made of brass and soft metal which means that it is not as sturdy as we think.

Keys are also prone to damage and these three reasons could amplify it more.

Using keys for other functions

Since keys are soft metals with innocuous edges, some people use them to open parcels or tins of pain or canned goods.

You may consider this lifehack but doing so several times will eventually damage the teeth side of your key.

When the edges are dented, the key has more chance to break off your lock.

Always forcing the keys into locks carelessly

Another common reason is when you unconsciously force your key inside the lock.

Applying strenuous force when you open a lock can damage not only the key, but the keyhole as well.

Be reminded that you should use your key correctly and with care to minimize the risk of damage.

Dropping the keys frequently

Many people have the habit of throwing the key or dropping it anywhere after opening a lock.

Little did they know, that key slowly develops dents, bents, or cracks as often it drops on hard areas.

Building up those dents will of course lead to a detrimental stage of the key, being unable to function properly.

Tips to easily remove broken key from a lock

A key that breaks inside the lock is a crisis that must be addressed quickly and correctly.

Otherwise, your valuables and your own safety will be compromised badly.

So, how do you get a broken key out of a lock?

Here are easy removal methods that you can try to get yourself out of that stressful situation.


The effectiveness of this method depends on the thickness of the tweezers you have.

Some tweezers are disproportionate to the size of the key.

The thickness of the tweezers might end up pushing the key farther into the keyhole.

However, tweezers may work if there is a portion of the key jutting out from the keyhole that should be enough to grab and pull.

Super Glue

Super glue is the method you use when you are out of options already because the job can be too hassle to do yet has the slightest chance to work.

The idea is attaching the key into a stick or wire that you can pull once those two items are well-intact.

Too much glue may damage the lock, so you should also consider the amount you apply on.

And similar to tweezers, this method may only work when the broken key is protruding from the keyhole.

Paper Clips

Surprisingly, paperclips can decently remove keys from the lock as long as the broken piece is not too small nor positioned too deep in the keyhole.

You can use paper clips in two ways.

One is slipping the paper clip beneath the fractured piece, gently pushing it down to take hold onto the key then pulling it out.

Second way is to use two clips to hold the key like a sandwich then leverage it out slowly.

Make sure to apply a moderate amount of grip, enough to leverage the broken key out without risking of pushing it back in.

You can also use bobby pins if paper clips are not available.

Key Extractor Tool

This is the most effective method to remove a broken key from a lock and it is also used by professional locksmiths!

There are several types of key extractors, but they almost work the same way.

The two most common extracting tools are: Hooked Key Extractor and Spiral Key Extractor.

The hooked extractor is a straight metal stick with a fishing hook end used to grip and leverage the key promptly.

While the latter is a very thin spiral metal with a very sharp point end to perfectly fit inside the lock with broken key.

Spiral extractor works by inserting the tool inside the slowly twist it until the key comes out.

What should I do after removing the key from the lock?

If you successfully remove a broken key from a lock without hurting yourself, congratulations!

You did a great job on that part, but the job is not quite finished yet.

You still have a broken key on your hand and probably a damaged lock as well.

So, after removing the key, you should inquire from a professional locksmith and get a Key and Lock Replacement Service to make sure this incident won’t happen again.

If you are looking for a reliable locksmith in Hamilton, Speedlock got your back!

Our services are not limited to key replacement alone, we also perform safe and quick key extraction!

Call us anytime!

We are open for 24 hours, available to fix any emergency key and lock issues you might have.

Call us 24 hr

(289) 768-7728

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