How to Tell If Someone Tampered with Your Locks

How to Tell If Someone Tampered with Your Locks

Posted on August 7, 2020 by A-1

Do you ever have the feeling that something isn’t quite right? It can happen when you eat food of a questionable quality. Or when you think someone is following you on the road. For some people, though, this can happen when they come home for the day and look at their front door.

Thinking your home lock has been tampered with can give you tremendous anxiety and stress. Here are the signs to look for that your lock has been tampered with, as well as what you should do about it.

Signs of Lock Tampering

When someone tampers with your locks, the signs can be obvious or they can be subtle. If you know what to look for, however, you’ll be under less stress and be more confident about the steps you should take. Here are some common signs of lock tampering:

  • Bent deadbolts or framing: If a potential home invader tried to use brute force to gain entry into your home, you’ll be able to tell by looking at the door frame or deadbolts/latches. If there’s any bent metal or warped wood, it could be a sign of tampering. Even wood splinters on the ground can be an indication that someone tried to gain entry via brute force.
  • Scratch marks around the keyhole: A sign that someone may have been trying to pick the lock is tiny scratch marks or abnormalities near the keyhole. This entry method doesn’t leave many traces, so it requires some attention to detail.
  • Shiny metal edges around the keyhole: A technique known as “bumping” can leave signs similar to picking. The criminals use a dummy key and hammer on the lock until it opens. There can be no signs of picking or bumping attempts if the person has lots of experience, however.
  • Lock doesn’t function properly: Regardless of the method, a sign that a lock has been tampered with is that it doesn’t function. This could be because of another reason, but if there are accompanying signs, it’s a good bed someone tried to gain access.

Steps to Take

So, what happens once you determine that someone has been tampering with the locks of your home? Hare are some good steps to consider:

  1. Contact the authorities: If the signs are obvious, there is damage to your home or something has been stolen, you may want to file a police report. If there are only subtle signs or you’re not sure, keep a log of when you noticed it for a future report.
  2. Be wary about even entering your home: If you suspect your lock was tampered with then there is the possibility that entrance was gained and that the intruder may still be on premise. In this circumstance, follow our first step above and ensure you do not enter the home until authorities arrive. 
  3. Call a professional locksmith: Have a residential locksmith check out the lock to confirm whether it looks like it was tampered with and repair it, if necessary. Maintaining security is of utmost importance.
  4. Take an inventory of valuables: Go through your home and see if anything valuable was stolen or if any personal items are missing. This will help you with any police reports and you’ll confirm whether the break-in attempt was successful or not.
  5. Consider upgrading your lock: You might want to consider upgrading to a high-security lock that is bump-proof or pick-proof. Digital locks are also an option. A professional locksmith can help with this as well.
  6. Take other security measures: You might also want to install a security system, digital lock, secondary lock or video doorbell. Peace of mind is a good investment and this can deter future tampering attempts.

If you think someone has tampered with your locks, give the A-1 Locksmith team a call today at  (972) 284-7500 to repair or replace them.

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