Tips For Handling Frosted Locks

Frosted Lock

Crunchy leaves, hot drinks, cozy blankets, cinnamon flavors, white, snowy roads. Sounds good, no? These are just a few of the things that make us anticipate the cold season each year. Unfortunately, fall and winter also come with a series of headaches.

Dangerous, icy roads for drivers and frozen locks on cars early in the morning are just a couple of the most prevalent nuisances we will mention here. As experts in all lock-related matters, we know just how many people deal with such issues on a yearly basis. We also know they may be more difficult to tackle by inexperienced owners who have never de-iced their vehicles, mailboxes or homes. This is why we have set up a brief guide that should help you be better prepared when the temperatures start to drop and the first snowflakes start falling.

Why Do Locks Freeze?

Locks on cars freeze for one of two reasons:

  • The vehicle has been recently washed and the temperatures have dropped below the freezing point

  • The car has been left out in the cold over the night, parked in the driveway or a temporary parking spot

Locks on homes, padlocks on sheds and gates and mailbox locks freeze because of moisture that naturally reaches the interior of keyholes and causes them to freeze when temperatures dip.

Tips For Defrosting Locks Fast And Easy

Use Hand Sanitizer

Most people carry hand sanitizer on them – at least more often than they keep de-icers on them. Since the hand cleaning product contains ethanol and isopropanol alcohol, it can effectively melt the ice found inside a lock in just a few seconds. To safely use this method, cover your key in hand sanitizer and place it into the frozen lock using extra care. Do not force the process or you will end up with a broken key inside the lock. Leave the hand sanitizer to do its work for about half a minute, then turn the key and open the door on your car or home.

Steer Clear From Hot Liquids

Frosted locksIt's 7 in the morning and a frozen lock situation is keeping you locked out of your car while in a hurry to get to work. You look at the hot portable tea or coffee flask and for a split second, you consider pouring it over the ice lock. It's what most people are tempted to do since hot water can instantly melt ice. However, think of the repercussions. While you may be able to temporarily get the ice to melt, you will most likely damage the electronic system inside your lock in the long term. Not to mention you will be doing nothing more but putting water back in, causing the lock to freeze once again.

Remove As Much Ice As Possible

Clear the lock cylinder's opening with a key or a screwdriver; just make sure you act cautiously to avoid unwanted accidents. Once you are done removing most of the ice, try unlocking your home or car again.

Heat The Key

For higher rates of success, try to use a hairdryer, matches, a lighter, the radiator on your car or even boiling water, depending on your logistics. The ice should melt a lot quicker once the key will be hot enough.

Use An Aerosolized De-icer

If you have a de-icer can around, spray it straight into the keyway and wait for it to work. It should immediately defrost the ice inside all types of locks and help you get into your car, home, shed, garage or open your home gate in just a few minutes.

Call A Locksmith

If you are in the middle of nowhere or, for some reason, you cannot try any of the suggestions from above, get in touch with a professional locksmith service in the area. The 24/7 ASAP Locksmith team is available 24 hours a day, 365 days, especially in the cold season in northern states where lots of drivers deal with frozen locks on their cars.

How To Prevent Your Locks From Freezing

  • Have a WD-40 lubricant at hand and spray it on all home, car, gate and mailbox doors, including the trunk of your car before the temperatures start to drop. These products usually come with small straws attached. Use them to spray the lubricant inside the keyholes and reapply as needed during long and cold winters. Make sure you place a few cans around in locations that are easy to reach so you can use them if you are locked out of your car or home because of frozen locks.

  • As an alternative that is easier to tolerate instead of the WD-40 lubricant, you can try graphite. This is a solution particularly advisable for those of you who cannot stand the WD-40 smell. It will do wonders at keeping the moisture in the air out of the keyways, this preventing the freezing from occurring.

  • Cover the locks on your car. To prevent the keyholes on your car from freezing over the night, consider covering them with putty. Simply remove the putty in the morning when you are ready to use your car.

  • Use duct tape or plastic bags on your gate or mailbox locks and padlocks to stop them from creating any lock defrost problems during the cold season. Make sure the bags and covers are not wet or moist because of rain or snow before placing them on the locks.

What Customers Say About Us

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Mark G.
Crockett Blvd

The keys to my office went missing, just disappeared last night. I was so frustrated, besides for being embarrassed in front of my employees, I also didn’t want to lose money due to the delay. I called for a locksmith and Justin came over straight away, he suggested re-keying the lock, in case my keys were stolen, I thought this was a great idea, and that’s what we did, he then made new keys for me on the spot.

247 ASAP Locksmiths Testimonial
Tyler Goodman
Wilshire Blvd

My office is in Los Angeles and I often need to meet people. So the day my office door stopped to work, I was both sad and upset. My secretary called for me 247 ASAP Locksmiths and I was pleased from the fast job and professional education the guy from Locksmiths have. My work day was safe!

247 ASAP Locksmiths Testimonial
Sophia Tucker
98th Street

Unexpected situations are always embarrassing and upsetting… especially if you have no time at all! When I realized my garage door wasn’t working I nearly got a heart attack! After a few minutes, I got a great idea and I called 247 ASAP Locksmiths: the guys arrived on time and did an excellent job!