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The problem with mortice locks is that they all look very similar on the shop shelf but in reality they differ. Here at The DIY World we are here to help you sort out the differences and avoid those DIY headaches

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How To Fit a Replacement Mortice Lock With Just a Few Simple Tools

Does the above heading sound too good to be true? Here at The DIY World we are here to help you to do just that, so read on. Your mortice lock has been playing up for quite some time, you know you need to do something about it soon but with trades men charges being high and the tutorial for fitting a lock on this site indicating that you need a degree in woodworking, does the above heading seem like a contradiction?

The problem with mortice locks is that they all look very similar on the shop shelf but in reality they differ, so even if you purchase the correct type, attempting to fit the wrong model can turn out to be a headache, not to mention requiring a vast array of woodworking tools so as to get it to fit and working correctly. Though the lock case may fit into the opening it could be that the forend is smaller or larger than the origonal and this will throw the other required settings which can mean a lot of making good and woodworking adjustment. So let’s not take that route and do things the easy way.

The secret is to purchase the exact replacement, that is, manufacturer and model. If you do this then replacing the lock will be simple and of course requiring just a few simple tools.

If you have a local specialist lock supplier, remove the faulty lock and take it to them for a replacement. Specialist stockist carry all makes of locks and will be able to provide you with a replacement from stock.

Alternatively there are many specialist stockist advertising on the internet, this option would mean you identifying the lock and purchasing mail order. To help identify the lock some of the information that you will need can be found on the lock’s front forend. The forend usually has the manufacturer stamped on it as well other as other information such as a British Standard Kite Mark if the lock is to that standard. The key too usually has the manufacturer logo on it. However, having this information alone is not enough, because manufacturers make many variants of the same lock.

In addition to knowing the lock manufacturer you will need to establish:

  • Does the lock have a British Standard Kite Mark or not.
  • The colour of the lock case.
  • Are the keys steel or brass.
  • The distance of the keyhole from the forend.
  • The length and width of the forend.
  • The dimensions of the lock case.
  • Does the lock have handles or is it keys only.
  • Can you also provide a photo.

By providing all this information the supplier should be able to get an exact replacement of your existing lock.

To remove the lock and fit and replace follow these instructions.

The first step is to unlock the door and open it and with the door in the open position turn the key again so that the bolt extends out. If your lock has handles, remove one of them and pull out the spindle which is the square steel bar that fits into the handle. Next, remove the two screws that hold the front forend and remove the plate (some locks differ where they have threaded screws that hold the front forend, in which case there are two additional screws securing the lock to the door which will also need removing). The lock is now free to come out of the door, this is best done by gripping the extended bolt with a pair of grips to ease the lock out.

Because the new replacement lock is identical it will fit into the mortice of the door without any adjustments being required but if the old lock was difficult coming out it may be required to be gently tapped it into place. Refit the lock and front forend in reverse order of removal and ensure that the keyhole lines-up, check too that the spindle fits into the handle and that it operates freely. Refit the handle and check that the door closes and locks correctly.

Congratulations! You have now successfully replaced a mortice lock with just a few simple tools.



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