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Locksmith Blog

Information about the locksmith industry.

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Microchip Car Keys - Fact vs. Fiction

Microchip Car Keys - Fact vs. Fiction

Microchip car keys - also known as transponder keys - are designed to protect your vehicle. Each key contains a code that the car must recognize before it will start. Without the code, the car will not start.

You only get one microchip key with your vehicle.

Fiction! Yes, your microchip car key is secure because the coding only works with your vehicle. However, multiple keys can be programmed with your specific code, allowing you to have more than one transponder key. This enables you to have replacement keys, should you need them in the future.

Microchip car keys are difficult to disable.

Fact! Sure, transponder keys CAN be disabled, but not easily. Doing so requires specialized equipment and software that generally only a car dealership or a locksmith like Cheap Lock & Key possess. This is expensive equipment that makes it an unattractive option for even sophisticated, high-tech thieves.

Only the specific auto manufacturer can program a transponder key.

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The Best Locks to Secure Your Home

The Best Locks to Secure Your Home

We don’t live in a Mayberry world anymore. The novelty of leaving your doors unlocked has been replaced with the need for safety and peace of mind. Since your doors are the place your home is most vulnerable, selecting the right locks for each one is vital. But knowing the best way to secure your home can be confusing unless you understand all your options.

Doorknob Lock

The most basic of all the locks is the doorknob lock. These locks have knobs on both sides of the door, one side has a lock, the other has a keyhole. These are common on all household doors, but ideally should be limited to indoor privacy uses.

Doorknob locks are easily damaged with external force. Once the knob is compromised, the locking mechanism is easily accessible, leaving your home vulnerable. Doorknob locks alone are not secure enough on exterior doors unless used in conjunction with a secondary lock.

Deadbolt Lock

Deadbolts are the most popular, widely-used security lock for homes. They...

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How to prevent burglars from compromising your door locks.

How to prevent burglars from compromising your door locks.

Over 50% of all burglars gain access to your home through your front or back door, making them the most susceptible areas of your house. It is important for you, as a homeowner, and for us as your locksmith, to make sure your home is safe and secure by installing and maintaining your locks. Especially living in a bigger city, like Tampa Bay.

Burglars can tamper with your locks in several ways.

Most locks used in residential households are not top-of-the-line secure locks. There are many different ways that burglars will attempt to open your doors. Here are the most common:

Snapping

This common tactic involves literally snapping a lock by force. This can be done with a screwdriver, hammer, or other tools. Once broken, the locking mechanism is exposed and your door can be easily opened in just seconds.

Bumping

Burglars file down the “teeth” on a key, making it resemble a small saw. The key in inserted into the lock and bumped with a blunt object until the...

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Four Reasons You REALLY Need a Spare Car Key

Four Reasons You REALLY Need a Spare Car Key

When you buy a new car, your auto dealer hands you the shiny new keys and sends you out to the open road. But how often do we forget to make a copy of that key? Here’s how that little bit of forethought can save you a huge headache down the road.

1. Locking your keys in the car.

Unless you have a smart key that makes it impossible to lock your keys in the car, it happens to the best of us—your doors lock automatically, or you manually push down the locking mechanism and before you have the chance to think about it, you close the door, turn around, and see your keys through the car window. If you don’t have a spare, you will have to call us to gain access. If you have a spare, you can have someone bring it to you or catch a ride home to retrieve it. Either way, time and money will be saved.

2. Losing the keys to your car.

We all know that when looking for your keys, they're always in the last place you look! However, sometimes you just can't find...

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Create a key from a lock with no key to duplicate.

Create a key from a lock with no key to duplicate.

Maybe your house key broke off in the lock, or you accidentally tossed your car keys out with the trash—however you got there, you suddenly need a new key, and don’t have the original to make a copy. No problem. With the help of a skilled locksmith, there are a couple ways we can have your doors open in no time.

Creating a key from your lock's code.

The first method is called “coding” your lock. Most locks for your home are produced with a “code,” which your locksmith can get either from the lock’s original paperwork or through the manufacturer. The code can only be translated by a professional locksmith—for security purposes, you can’t just look it up—and it tells your locksmith the exact length and depth of your key’s notches, so he can make a fresh new key.

This can also be done with car keys! Just find the VIN number on the inside of your vehicle’s door. Your locksmith can then contact the dealer...

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