How to Open a Door When the Mechanism Is Broken


How to Open a Door When the Mechanism Is Broken

If you have a locked door, and the keyhole is not blocked or covered, that could indicate your lock is broken. Chances are, you will need to call for help from a locksmith who will open the lock with their tools. However, if you do try to open it yourself, some damage may be done to either the front door handle or the door’s locking mechanism (depending on the type). For this reason, today, I will discuss how to open a door when the mechanism is broken.

Step-wise Guide How to Open a Door When the Mechanism Is Broken

Step 1

When you have the problem of opening a door when the machine is broken, don’t panic at once and try to scream for help or do something foolish. It makes no sense!

Step 2.

Otherwise, if all these manipulations didn’t help you yet, try to force yourself manually through the crack between your door and its frame. All doors have a certain gap between the frame and the door itself to prevent them from a frequent collision with each other when opened. It’s enough for you to insert your hand or shoulder to push it open forcibly. And remember that you should be careful not to damage the hinge parts if possible!

Step 3.

If you are blocked by such a door that doesn’t open even with opening knobs (if such are available), notice that there should be a trip lever underneath the handle, which can be activated by moving it down manually, and this will allow you to turn the knob without any problems. So, look carefully under your hand and find out whether there is something like that on your door.

Try To Open Door Lock

Step 4.

If this way of opening a break-downed door didn’t help as well, try pushing on one side of the door (usually both hinges are bolted to the walls and do not bend easily) by leaning against it with rather significant force while holding onto something solid strong at the same time so that you won’t fall while doing it!

Step 5.

Still no luck? Then look for any tools nearby (a crowbar, a hammer, anything) and try to break it down or remove the parts by force. Once a door is opened (the metal part in this case), you can open any other door in your house!

Step 6

Suppose nothing works for you so far — very well! Then the only way to go out is to call for help. It would be best if you did it immediately as the situation of being trapped inside is rather dangerous from my point of view because there may be gas, fire or any other substances that affect people’s health coming through cracks under doors or even flooding some rooms when water enters from taps on upper floors. So don’t hesitate and scream louder than ever before!

Precautions While Performing How to Open a Door When the Mechanism Is Broken

  • Always be sure to move your body away from the door, out of its path.   If you do not, it could crush and kill you when the door comes down on you.
  • Never try to open a door propped in a closed position by blocking part of it with any object or material; that would increase the pressure pushing against the obstruction when the person tries to enter, obstructing to come loose and fall inward forcefully opening the door with great force, possibly injuring anyone in its path.   
  • Always use the “trip lever” under a door handle to turn it to open the door.   If there is no trip lever, you must pry the lock mechanism loose from the inside of your home and then remove all parts of it (normally 2 screws) so that you may directly insert a key into the hole where they were.
  •  Never try to force an exit through a door if it is blocked by something on the outside, such as furniture, boxes, or snow; whenever possible, move these obstructions away from in front of your door before attempting to exit through it.

How to Replace A Door Lock

The main use of locks is to secure the privacy and security of homes, offices, or vehicles while locking access. The need for replacement arises when a lock gets damaged due to wear and tear, accidents, or in case of theft.

Replacing a door lock may seem like an easy job, but only if you know how to do it. In case you are not that proficient at dealing with existing locks, then hire an expert technician. Always follow the instructions given by your local locksmith, as they would surely have worked upon many such projects before they can clarify the procedures involved in this operation.

It helps to gather all materials needed beforehand so that you won’t run about looking for what’s required helping you save precious time on task. However, if you are confident about dealing with the procedure yourself, follow the given steps to replace your broken lock.

Step 1: Remove Door Knob.

The first step involves removing the doorknob by unscrewing it from its base plate with a screwdriver. Next, turn the lock mechanism counter-clockwise towards the right side of the door till twist-free. Next, ensure that all screws holding the knob and strike plate together are removed to pull out the entire assembly attached to your door frame.

If there is any visible damage on them like scratches or scrapes, get replacements for them immediately. Ensure that you don’t lose any small parts involved in this operation because they can prove disastrous if misplaced in the future during installation, even though they may seem to be insignificant at first glance.

Remove Door Knob

Step 2: Remove Old Lock.

Now remove the old lock from your door’s exterior side by unscrewing it from the inside. You can use a screwdriver in this case since you will deal with recesses of your door, and they are too small for an open wrench or any other tool except a screwdriver.

Just unscrew all screws holding the old latch back onto its base plate, after which you can pull out the entire assembly attached to your door frame using a slight force, along with the removal of all screws and installing them into a new mechanism in reverse order. This is one way of removing an older type of lock while many others, such as drilling out holes on both sides, removing shoe pins from the latch, etc.

Step 3: Installing Latch Assembly.

Now it is time to install your newly acquired lock mechanism to the door frame by inserting new screws of different sizes into bottom plate holes. The distances between these holes and the length of screws vary according to the design specifications of individual locks, so make sure that you match them correctly; otherwise, you may end up with a jammed mechanism.

It’s always advisable to get assistance from someone at this stage since one person can hold back the exterior part while the other fastens its interior side because they are both heavy. Also, mark out mounting locations beforehand for the drill, which will be required later on if you want to mount strike plates using existing ones or if there are no such plates available in terms of designs.

Step 4: Remove Strike Plate.

Strike plates hold doors back onto their frames using fasteners that can be screwed onto the woodwork or drywall material surrounding them at a uniform distance apart from one another, forming a rectangular shape across the door’s face and some times with the help of hidden screws, too, depending upon its design specifications.

They provide an extra layer of security to your locks by ensuring that there are no visible gaps between the lock and exterior part, thereby preventing easy access for criminals or kids alike who may attempt to tamper with it. If you have any old strike plate, then remove it now using needle-nose pliers, while if you don’t have one, then install a new one that comes along with a new lock or one you might have saved from the old one.


I hope you have learned all the necessary information on how to open a door when the mechanism is broken. Thank you and have a nice day!

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