How to change combination locks
It goes without saying that we need to keep our properties and valuables safe. The Australian Bureau of Statistics released figures last year reporting that the number of robberies, burglaries and thefts has continued to rise by significant numbers over the last four consecutive years. To avoid being a victim of burglary and theft in Australia (especially in our local Newcastle & Lake Macquarie areas), keeping your belongings secured is becoming increasingly necessary.
Fortunately, there are many ways to secure your valuables and property. One of the most common is by using different types of locks and keys.
Things to know about combination locks
When it comes to basic locks and keys, one of the first lock types that come to mind are combination locks. This type of lock depends on the alignment of its interior parts to open, instead of needing a key to trigger unlocking. The interior parts’ alignment depends on the sequence of symbols programmed into the lock. Users can either rotate the dial to unlock or type in a passcode with the help of a mechanical or electronic keypad.
Types of combination locks
There are many types of combination locks nowadays, with varying looks, dial or keypad types, and levels of security. Here are some of the most common types of combination locks you can find in Australia:
Multiple Dial Locks
Multiple dial locks are perhaps one of the most basic types of combination locks you can find. In common application, you’ll most likely find multiple dial combination locks on bicycle chains, briefcases, travel bags and smaller padlocks that you might use on the zipper of your suitcase. This type of lock utilises rotating cams with indentations, with a grooved pin hooked into it to activate the attachment of this lock. The lock opens when the grooves and/or teeth of the pin align with the indentations on the cams.
In general, multiple dial locks are probably one of the least secure types of combination locks, so is usually only suitable for basic locking requirements. This is because with putting tension on the pin while rotating the cam will result in a slight click when the tooth slots into the indentation. Would-be thieves with enough experience in unlocking multiple dial locks can use these clicking sounds to open the lock, without knowing the combination. If the material you want to secure is confidential or valuable, it’s recommended to use other types of locks.
Single Dial Locks
This type of lock is often used in safes, some locker cabinets, and certain padlocks other materials that require locks of higher-level security. This type of lock uses parallel cams and a rotating dial. You need to rotate the dial clockwise until you reach a certain symbol, then rotate the dial anti-clockwise until you reach the next symbol in the code; this process of rotating the dial in alternate directions continues until you complete all the symbols in the set combination. Once all characters of the combination have correctly input the notches will align and the lock will open.
Single dial locks are more secure than multiple dial locks, but a person with experience can still crack the code if they listen carefully to the clicks of the dial and the internal cams. Therefore, you should still exercise caution when choosing this type of lock to secure your property or valuables.
Apart from the classic single dial and multiple dial clocks, there are other types of combination locks available, such as the numeric sequence keypad lock. Apart from the mechanical aspect of this combination keypad lock, there’s also the use of electronic circuitry that increases the level of security provided by the lock.
Another is a variation of the common dial-based combination locks with different sets of passcodes programmed for different sets of individuals. There are numerous valid combinations in this type of combination lock, and it can record which password or combination was used at a given time. A tiny generator set or a battery powers this type of combination lock.
Changing Combination Locks
There are a number of reasons why you might want to change the code on your combination locks – perhaps the lock code has been compromised, or you may decide you want to regularly update or change your combination for security reasons. Regardless of your reason, it’s important that you have an idea on how to change lock combinations for future reference.
There are many ways to change the combination on a dial lock, depending on the manufacturing and design of the combination lock you’ve selected.
Here’s an example of how you can change or reset the combination lock for single dial locks:
- Identify the “change” position of your lock. Most manufacturers make the change position of their combination locks at 1:00 or 11:00 of the dial.
- Once you have identified the change position, you need to decide on the new passcode combination you are going to use.
- Depending on the manufacturing of your dial lock, some may need a literal key locked in the back of the lock for it to move back to neutral mode. If your combination lock requires a key, insert it properly so that your new combination will be accepted by the lock.
If you’re currently using a padlock with a multiple dial combination lock, here are the steps to changing your combination:
- Open the lock by pulling up the shackle.
- Rotated the shackle 90 degrees anti-clockwise and press the shackle all the way down.
- While holding down the shackle of your lock, turn each dial to the selected position to set your new combination.
- Lift the shackle and return it to the normal position. Your new code should now be programmed into your lock.
Learn to change your combination locks and more with Ambassador Locksmiths
If you need to change the security code on your combination lock, for whatever reason, Ambassador Locksmiths are here to help you with all your combination lock issues. Whether you have been locked out of your property, or you need a deep resetting of all your combination locks, Ambassador Locksmiths, servicing the Newcastle & Lake Macquarie areas, are ready to help.
The friendly and professional team at Ambassador Locksmiths, conveniently located in Charlestown, are happy to assist you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We understand that lockout problems happen at any time of the day, so we are ready to help you with all your lock emergencies.