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Locksmith in Edinburgh Blog - Hero Locksmith

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  • April 16, 2018 04:27:42 PM
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A Little About Us

The Hero Locksmith Blog provides information about latest work as well as helpful articles to help people understand the kind of work that we do and why it is important to choose a local and knowledgeable locksmith.

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  • Annual Regular Membership: 1 Year Term 2019-04-16 10:27:42 (85 days left)
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    Locksmith Tips for Landlords

    If you are a landlord it is your responsibility to keep your tenants safe.  This means that you must have smoke alarms installed annual gas safety checks and electrical testing etc. But it also means that you have a responsibility to ensure that your property is secure and will keep your tenants and their belongings […] The post Locksmith Tips for Landlords appeared first on Hero...

    Edinburgh locksmith tips for landlords

    If you are a landlord it is your responsibility to keep your tenants safe.  This means that you must have smoke alarms installed annual gas safety checks and electrical testing etc. But it also means that you have a responsibility to ensure that your property is secure and will keep your tenants and their belongings safe. If you are worried that your locks are not up to scratch it is worth calling a local locksmith so that he can replace any dodgy locks with good quality high security ones (BS3621).

     

    Door Locks

    Unless you know your locks, most people find it difficult to tell if their doors have the right kind of locks fitted. Having the right lock is extremely important when it comes to protecting your rental property, particularly since lock snapping has become much more common in Edinburgh. Lock snapping is a technique commonly used by burglars to break into homes which have poor quality euro cylinder locks fitted on external doors. This type of lock is most commonly found on UPVC doors but can also be found on wooden and aluminium doors too.

    A good locksmith will be only too happy to upgrade your locks to home insurance approved ones and will be able to recommend high security locks to suit all budgets. Although this may seem like a lot of inconvenience and extra expense, it can save a lot of hassle, upset and money if your rented property is broken into.

     

    Window Locks

    All ground floor and accessible windows need to have locks fitted. These come in a variety of styles and a locksmith will be able to recommend the best option for your particular type of window.

     

    Garages, sheds and outbuildings

    If you have a property with a garage, shed, summerhouse etc. these should also be protected. You may be offering these building as extra facilities for your tenants or they may be somewhere that you want to keep off limits. Either way it is important that they can be locked securely. Your locksmith will be able to supply and fit any locks if necessary.

     

    New Keys

    When choosing a locksmith to replace your locks it is always worth asking if he has a mobile key cutting service. If he does, this will enable him to cut spare keys (for most types of common lock) while he is at your property. This will save you an extra trip to get spare keys cut and is usually much cheaper too. In addition the locksmith will be able to properly test that all the new keys are a perfect fit and turn smoothly in the new lock.

     

    Security tips for tenants

    Preparing a list of hints and tips on how to maintain good security may be useful for some tenants, particularly young people moving into rented accommodation for the first time. This could include

    • A reminder to close and lock outer storm doors at night and any time the property is empty
    • A suggestion to keep their keys out of sight from a window or glass door so that a passing burglar does not spot them
    • A suggestion to put a couple of lights on a timer when they are away from the property for any length of time

     

    If you are a landlord it is important to know that your properties are properly protected. It will give you peace of mind when they have tenants and also when they lie empty between tenancies.  If you need to upgrade or replace any of the locks in any of your properties, please get in touch or Tel 0131 603 7329. Hero Locksmith is a local Edinburgh Trusted Trader locksmith and provides affordable locksmith services for homes and businesses throughout Edinburgh and the Lothians.

    The post Locksmith Tips for Landlords appeared first on Hero Locksmith.


    Should Locksmiths Be Licensed?

    In many countries around the world locksmiths are required to be licensed. This is not the case in the UK. There are no specific regulations for locksmiths other than trading standards which apply to all businesses selling a product or service. This means that anyone is free to buy some lock picking tools off the […] The post Should Locksmiths Be Licensed? appeared first on Hero...

    Licensed locksmiths

    In many countries around the world locksmiths are required to be licensed. This is not the case in the UK. There are no specific regulations for locksmiths other than trading standards which apply to all businesses selling a product or service. This means that anyone is free to buy some lock picking tools off the internet and set themselves up as a ‘locksmith’. As an experienced Edinburgh locksmith, I believe this is not good for the industry and not good for customers. Here are my reasons.

    Reasons locksmiths should be licensed

    1. Anyone regardless of background, training and experience can turn up at your door claiming to be an expert locksmith. The good reputation of genuine hardworking experienced locksmiths can quickly be tarnished by the poor skills or extortionate prices charged by a few poorly trained, inexperienced or rogue, ‘fly by night’ locksmiths.
    2. The difference between a good locksmith and a bad one can be down to lack of experience. Locksmith training courses are a good way to learn basic locksmith skills, but nothing beats on the job experience. It is completely unrealistic to expect someone to be a fully accomplished locksmith after completing a 2 day course. It can take an apprentice locksmith between one and two years to learn even the most basic of locksmith skills. Some locks can be very tricky to deal with and someone with little experience is highly likely to cause unnecessary damage to your lock, door or both. An experienced locksmith should have developed good non-destructive emergency entry skills.
    3. Many new locksmiths find it extremely difficult to find work. Being a locksmith is very competitive particularly in large cities like Edinburgh. Because of this, many start their career working for the big National locksmith companies. These large companies find them work in their area and then take a large cut of every job that they provide. This means that when you call a large national locksmith company you are more likely to get an inexperienced locksmith arriving at your door. You will have absolutely no idea how skilled or competent they are.
      These locksmiths will also charge much higher prices than local locksmiths. Higher prices are not charged because they use better parts or provide a better service. Instead it is because the prices they charge need to cover the cut to the National locksmith company in addition to their own labour and parts.
    4. Many rogue locksmiths use Google ads to advertise their business. By paying for these ads their business appears at the top of the page when you search on Google for a locksmith. Although there is nothing wrong with this and many good locksmiths also advertise this way, it is an easy way for poor or rogue locksmiths to disguise their lack of skills and experience.

     

    As things stand it is almost impossible to tell if someone is a genuine locksmith or has the right level of skills to do a good job. At the moment, probably the best way of deciding is either word of mouth recommendations or checking customer reviews on Google, Facebook, Yelp etc.

    If locksmiths were regulated it would allow minimum standards to be set. For example, Ireland has just introduced a locksmith licence. All locksmiths must undergo full police background checks, revenue compliance and be audited annually to show evidence of training and upskilling. In addition, it is now an offence in Ireland for a locksmith to fit, maintain or change a lock without a licence. If caught doing so they face a fine of €5000.  It is hoped that these new measures will prevent fly by night locksmith companies working illegally.

    If introduced here, these measures might not stop all rogue locksmiths but it would help weed out some of the very worst offenders. It would also raise standards across the whole of the industry and offer a much greater level of protection for customers.

    If you need help with your locks or emergency entry to your property, please get in touch with Richard. He is an experienced Edinburgh locksmith and an expert in non-destructive entry techniques.

     

     

    The post Should Locksmiths Be Licensed? appeared first on Hero Locksmith.


    5 Common Lock Problems and How to Fix Them

      Fully functioning locks are essential for protecting our homes and businesses. When there is a problem with a lock, it usually needs dealt with straight away. Some lock problems are serious and require the skills of a fully trained locksmith but others can be solved by following the simple guidance below. Here are 5 […] The post 5 Common Lock Problems and How to Fix Them appeared first on Hero...

    common lock problems

     

    Fully functioning locks are essential for protecting our homes and businesses. When there is a problem with a lock, it usually needs dealt with straight away. Some lock problems are serious and require the skills of a fully trained locksmith but others can be solved by following the simple guidance below. Here are 5 common lock problems and what you should do if they occur.

    1. Key breaks in the lock

    This is one of the most frustrating lock problems and usually occurs out of the blue without warning. There are some dos and don’ts if this happens to you. Don’t try to lock or unlock the door further with the broken piece of key. By doing this, there is a good chance you will insert the broken key further into the locking mechanism making it more difficult to retrieve. If there is enough of the broken key visible, you can try inserting the tip of needle nosed pliers into the keyhole to grab the broken key and pull it straight out. If the key doesn’t come out easily, don’t force it or you could make things much worse. At this stage you should call for the help of a trained locksmith. They will have the tools and skills to remove the key without causing further damage to the lock.

     

    2. Lock is stiff and difficult to open

    Dirt and dust can sometimes find its way into a lock and build up over time. This can clog up the locking mechanism making it difficult to turn. You can apply some graphite spay or silicone based lubricant in the lock, put the key back in and turn it a few times. Never use oil based products such as WD-40 to lubricate locks because although they may help initially, they tend to cause problems with clogging later on.

     

    3. UPVC door is difficult to lock or open

    If the door can be locked /unlocked easily while in the open position, but not when the door is closed, this usually indicates a problem with the alignment of the locking points. UPVC doors are designed to be adjustable but can sometimes slip or drop out of position. This is something that most people will find tricky to correct but is usually a quick fix by a trained locksmith. Unfortunately, if you discover that the locking mechanism has problems when the door is open this may indicate that the lock is faulty in which case new parts might be required. Again a quick call to a locksmith will have this sorted in no time.

     

    4. Key is difficult to insert

    First of all confirm that the right key is being used in the lock! The next thing to rule out is that the problem is not caused by a poorly cut key. Poorly cut keys will always be a problem in locks, which is why it is important to use a reputable locksmith when you get new keys cut. If you have another key for the lock, use it to work out if the problem lies with the key or with the lock. If the lock is at fault this will need investigated by a locksmith and may require a new one to be fitted.

     

    5. Key won’t turn in lock

    This problem can be caused by a few things. First of all it is important that you never try and force the key to turn in the lock as this could cause the key to break. You can try lubricating the lock with graphite spray or silicone based lubricant as mentioned above. If this doesn’t help it could be that there is a misalignment of the lock and door (similar to UPVC problem above) or there could be a problem with the lock cylinder. Unfortunately, both of these problems will usually require the skills and expertise of a locksmith to diagnose and correct.

     

    Most of us don’t give a moment’s thought to our locks when they are working correctly, however as soon as we discover a problem we usually need to act quickly. If you find yourself in this position and require a fully trained Edinburgh locksmith to help, get in touch or give Richard a call on 0131 603 7329

    The post 5 Common Lock Problems and How to Fix Them appeared first on Hero Locksmith.


    A Day in the Life of an Edinburgh Locksmith

    Being a locksmith in Edinburgh is never boring. Every day brings new challenges and new locksmith problems to solve. This short video captures some of the tasks that I  deal with on a typical day. The post A Day in the Life of an Edinburgh Locksmith appeared first on Hero...

    Being a locksmith in Edinburgh is never boring. Every day brings new challenges and new locksmith problems to solve. This short video captures some of the tasks that I  deal with on a typical day.

    The post A Day in the Life of an Edinburgh Locksmith appeared first on Hero Locksmith.


    What is Non Destructive Emergency Entry?

    Many people who find themselves in the stressful position of being locked out of their home are happy for any emergency locksmith to come to their rescue. This is particularly true for people who are locked out in the middle of the night. However this can often be a costly mistake. This is because not […] The post What is Non Destructive Emergency Entry? appeared first on Hero...

    non destructive entry locksmith in Edinburgh

    Many people who find themselves in the stressful position of being locked out of their home are happy for any emergency locksmith to come to their rescue. This is particularly true for people who are locked out in the middle of the night. However this can often be a costly mistake. This is because not all locksmiths have the same level of training or expertise and many do not have the right skills to get you back into your home without damaging your lock or door. Even worse there are some rogue locksmiths out there who will deliberately make as much work for themselves as possible in order to ramp up the costs.

    What is Non Destructive Emergency Entry?

    In a ‘lock out’ situation, when an emergency locksmith arrives at your door they should always start by investigating ways to get you back inside your property without damaging either your lock or door. This is called Non Destructive Entry. A locksmith will need to have been specially trained in these techniques and will have attended several courses specifically aimed at improving their skills in these areas. There are several methods that can be used depending on the particular type of lock e.g. yale, euro lock, night latch or mortice. Some common techniques include trying to manually slide the latch back, picking the lock and using bump keys to ‘jump’ the pins, allowing the cylinder to be rotated.

    However even the most skilled locksmith will tell you that the success of these methods very much depends on the type, age and brand of the particular lock. In fact it would be very misleading to say that drilling or forcing the lock is never necessary because sometimes nothing else will work. A general rule of thumb is Non Destructive Entry techniques are least likely to work on mortice locks (although other types of locks can be difficult too). This is because mortice locks are VERY SECURE. This is a really good thing in terms of home security but in a ‘lock out’ situation means it can be difficult to gain entry without completely destroying the old lock. However an experienced locksmith will always leave your door looking as good as they found it even if they have to use destructive entry methods.

    So if you need emergency entry to your property and you don’t want to be ripped off, it is worth taking the time to check if the locksmith you call will at least attempt Non Destructive Entry techniques first. You can do this by checking their company website for mention of ‘Non Destructive Entry’ as well as reading their reviews on Google. Of course this cannot be done if you choose a national call centre to find a locksmith as you will know nothing about the skills of the particular locksmith that will be assigned to you. This is a very good reason for always choosing a LOCAL LOCKSMITH.

    At the end of the day, sometimes drilling out the old lock and replacing it with a brand new one really is the best solution, particularly if the old lock is not very secure or you have lost your keys and are worried they have fallen into the wrong hands. However no one should be made to pay a hefty bill for an unnecessary new lock or damage made to their door because of an unskilled “I’ll have a go” locksmith. Instead, always do your research and find a local locksmith with good customer reviews and the right skills for the job.

    Please get in touch with Richard if you need help with your locks or emergency access to your property.  He is a trusted 24 hour emergency locksmith in Edinburgh and an expert in Non Destructive Entry techniques.

    The post What is Non Destructive Emergency Entry? appeared first on Hero Locksmith.


    How to Find the Best Locksmith in Your Area

    If you are locked out, or need your locks changed you need a way of quickly finding the best locksmith in your area. By best locksmith we don’t just mean the most skilled locksmith, we also mean someone who is trustworthy, fits genuine, good quality parts and charges honest prices. Here are some of our […] The post How to Find the Best Locksmith in Your Area appeared first on Hero...

    Find the best locksmith Edinburgh

    If you are locked out, or need your locks changed you need a way of quickly finding the best locksmith in your area. By best locksmith we don’t just mean the most skilled locksmith, we also mean someone who is trustworthy, fits genuine, good quality parts and charges honest prices. Here are some of our top tips

    1. Get personal recommendations from family, friends and neighbours

    We trust recommendations from people we know well, so this tends to be the most valuable way of finding a good locksmith. A genuine locksmith will always work hard to build a good reputation in their local area. They understand that personal recommendations are a really important source of new business and will help their business grow.

    2. Check reviews

    If you don’t have access to any personal recommendations then checking reviews on Google, Facebook, Yelp etc. is helpful. You can easily spot locksmiths who have a high number of 5* reviews from happy customers, as well as those that have none (or few). By reading what is said in the reviews you can also get a feel for the type of person who will arrive at your door, which can be reassuring if you live on your own

    3. Check accreditations

    There is currently no government based licensing of the locksmithing industry, so anyone can call themselves a locksmith. It is therefore a good idea to check if the locksmith is on any approved trade lists, as this generally means that the company has been thoroughly checked out e.g. Trusted Trader, Which? Trusted Trader

    4. Listen carefully

    A good locksmith will ask relevant questions when you call. They will have seen just about every type of lock problem, many, many times before and by asking the right questions can usually figure out the problem and give you an accurate quote over the phone. Always beware locksmiths who say they need to come to your property before they can give you a price.

    5. Check they have insurance

    A good locksmith will always have public liability insurance to cover costs in the unlikely event that they cause damage to your property.

    6. Check they are local

    It is always better to use a local Locksmith. Larger national companies often run advertisements that appear to be for a local business but when you call, connect you to a call centre in another city. They then subcontract work out to a locksmith in your area, without necessarily knowing anything about how skilled they are at their job. They usually cost a lot more too, as the fee they charge has to cover both the locksmith and the call centre!

    7. Get a few quotes

    It goes without saying that you should always get more than one quote for the job.  However be aware that some locksmiths will give you a really low estimate over the phone and then add lots of extras when the job is complete. Always ask if the quote includes any call out fees, labour, parts, VAT and if there are any other surcharges that have not been included.

    8. Ask about locks

    Most good locksmiths will have a few different brands of lock which they prefer to fit. From years of fitting and replacing locks, they know which brands consistently perform best.  Some of the most common brands include Yale, Era, Chubb, Union, Legge, Asec, Garison and Assa Abloy but there are many others. Unscrupulous locksmiths will try to save money by fitting cheap, unbranded locks bought off places like ebay, so always ask to see the packaging. Also, if you need a new lock for an external door always check that the locksmith plans to use an insurance company approved, high security lock (BS3621). This type of lock should have the BS Kitemark visible somewhere on the lock and on the packaging. In addition, a good locksmith should be able to offer you at least a 12 month guarantee on any new locks they fit.

     

    If you follow these tips and find a good local locksmith remember to store their number in a safe place or add it to the contacts list on your mobile phone. This makes it easy to pass their number on to friends and family, as well as handy for you if you need to call them again in a hurry.

    For help with all your locksmith problems 24 hours a day, contact Richard, a local and honest locksmith in Edinburgh.

    The post How to Find the Best Locksmith in Your Area appeared first on Hero Locksmith.


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