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How to Break Into an Interior Door Lock

This article is a collaborative effort, crafted and edited by a team of dedicated professionals.

Contributors: Muhammad Baballe Ahmad, Mehmet Cavas, Sudhir Chitnis, and Zhen-ya Liu.

✓ Verified & Tested Information

If you’re locked out of your home and need to get back in, don’t panic! In this blog post, we’ll show you how to break into an interior door lock so you can get back inside.


Breaking into an interior door lock can be an intimidating task, but with the right preparation, it doesn’t have to be. Before attempting to break into a lock, make sure the door is unlocked and that no other locks are blocking it. It’s also important to have the right tools on hand. Having the right type of screwdriver, a hammer, and a flathead chisel are necessary for breaking into an interior door lock. With the right preparation, you should be able to break into the lock with ease.

Gather the necessary tools

Interior door locks consist of two parts: the door handle and latch assembly, and the cylinder lock. Breaking into a locked interior door can be relatively simple if you have the right tools. Before beginning, some supplies are necessary to complete the task in a safe and effective manner.

Gather these supplies if they are not already on hand:

– Screwdriver – Depending on the type of lock, you may need both a flathead screwdriver and Philips screwdriver for removing screws from the faceplate.
– Lock pick set – These sets usually include torque wrenches and several different tension wrenches for different sized locks.
– Hammer – The hammer will be needed to break off certain parts of the lock that must be removed in order to expose the interior mechanism.
– Pliers – Pliers will also be needed to remove any small or broken pins that may be stuck within the inner workings of the lock.
– Gloves – A pair of gloves should be worn while attempting to break into a cylinder lock in order to protect yourself from cuts or scrapes on your hands or fingers caused by sharp edges on any broken pieces within the lock mechanism.

Check for any additional security features

Before attempting to break into an interior door lock, be sure to check out the lock for any additional security features. Some doors may have a hidden bolt or mortise cylinder that require a special key or tools that may limit your access. It’s best to feel around the edges of the door and look at the woodwork and door jamb for any signs of extra keys or locks. Also, look for any alternative locking mechanisms such as keyless entry, toggle switches, or push button latches which will require different methods for gaining access. Once you have identified any additional security features and determined that the lock you are going to attempt to break into is solely traditional pin tumbler type, you can attempt to pick it with some basic supplies found in most hardware stores.

Access the Lock

If you need to access a locked interior door, there are several ways to do so. One method is by accessing the lock itself. This involves opening the door without damaging any of the locking components. This method requires specialized tools and knowledge, and it is recommended that you consult with a locksmith if you choose this option. Let’s explore the basics of accessing the lock.

Identify the type of lock

Interior door locks come in a variety of styles and often require specialized methods for unlocking them. Knowing the type of lock you are facing will be the key to unlocking it successfully. Three common interior locks are:

a) Key-and-knob lock: Commonly found on apartment doors, this style of lock does not use a deadbolt, but rather two interlocking levers that are operated by a knob. This style of lock is also known as a mortise lock or rim lock since it fits into the door from either side.

b)Deadbolt: This common entry way door has two parts (the deadbolt and the doorknob) operated by one key. Deadbolts may be spring latch or include additional security features such as a thumbturn or double-cylinder operation.

c) Privacy Lock: These locks are usually found on bedroom and bathroom doors, usually with a “privacy turn” knob on the interior face of the door so you can exit without needing to unlock it. Be sure to check that your privacy lock is not locked from the inside before you try to gain access.

Insert a tension wrench into the keyhole

Once you’ve identified the type of lock to which you want access, you can proceed with attempting to unlock it by inserting a tension wrench into the keyhole. A tension wrench is essentially a narrow tweaking tool used for manipulating a pin tumbler lock. It allows for turning and putting tension on the lock so that the pins can be set in place when the correct key is inserted. To insert your tension wrench, hold it up to the keyhole at about a 75-degree angle and slide it in until there are no gaps left on any sides and it reaches the back of the lock. Turn lightly while inserting; if done properly, your torsion wrench should stick in place without slipping out.

Insert a pick into the keyhole

Inserting a pick into the keyhole of an interior door lock requires some skill and patience. First, you’ll need to determine the type of lock your door has. There are many varieties, from warded locks and lever tumblers to pin tumblers. The most common type is a pin tumbler lock, which is what you’ll find on most interior doors. To open this type of lock, you’ll need a set of picks specifically designed for picking locks.

A good quality pick set should include several different types of picks such as rake or snake picks, half diamond picks and a tension wrench. Once you have your tools in hand, insert a rake or snake pick into the keyhole and move it around while simultaneously using the tension wrench to apply pressure to the pins inside. You may need to rotate or jiggle the picks while holding steady pressure in order to unlock the door. This can take some practice and patience so be sure to give yourself adequate time if attempting this method without help from a professional locksmith.

Pick the Lock

Picking a lock is the quickest and most effective way to break into an interior door lock. You can purchase a lock-picking set from a hardware store or online, if you don’t already have one. The process of picking a lock involves manipulating the pins found inside the lock with a pick in order to unlock the door. In this section we will be discussing the basics of picking an interior door lock.

Find the pins in the lock

In order to pick a standard door lock, one must first locate the pins that make up the combination established by the lock. For each pin there will be a top and a bottom cut. Each of these grooves may contain an individual spring-loaded pin. Once the key is inserted into the lock, these pins are pushed back to create the combination that allows the plug to turn when pressure is applied. It is important to identify which pins are falling into place when applying pressure.

It is essential to remember where each individual pin falls into place throughout the entire process, as you will need this information for unlocking and picking out repeated patterns in further attempts. To accomplish this task, use a standard tension wrench inserted in the plug of the lock and gently apply clockwise pressure while inserting a thin metal pick known as a torsion bar or rake tool into each individual pin of the lock in order to observe which ones fall into place. This process can be tricky and require patience from time to time, but with practice it can quickly become quite efficient.

Manipulate the pins

Once the tension wrench is set to the proper position, you can start to manipulate the pins in the lock. To do this, you’ll need to delicately insert and remove the hook of a pick repeatedly while turning the tension wrench ever so slightly. The goal is to get each pin inside the lock cylinder to align with its slot simultaneously. Each time you successfully align all of the pins, you will feel an increased resistance and some give when turning your key. Keep repeating and adjusting until all the pins have been lined up correctly. This may take some practice, but with patience and persistence anyone can learn how to pick a lock.

Feel for the pins to set

Once the proper tension has been applied to the plug and you have a firm grip on it, you should be able to feel or hear when each of the pins sets. The pins are held in place by tiny springs that give each of them some resistance. As you turn the pick, the pins will begin to move and you will feel them as they pass over each of the chambers. As soon as each pin passes its shear line–the point where each pin is flush with the cylinder wall–you will encounter a brief moment of resistance followed by the feeling or sound of it setting into place. Setting all five pins in this way completes one full cylinder rotation and unlocks the door.

Open the Lock

Trying to open an interior door lock can be a tricky situation. However, it can be done fairly quickly if you know how to do it. In this article, we’ll go over the steps necessary to get inside that door and onto the other side. We’ll discuss the tools you’ll need, how to choose the right lock mechanism, and the steps to take to open the lock . Let’s get started.

Turn the tension wrench

Using a tension wrench, an essential tool required for picking locks, turn the wrench gently and slowly in the direction of the turn of the desired key. As you apply gentle pressure to the lock with your tension wrench, probe inside with your pick. The goal here is to find the “sweet spot,” which will be when all pins are aligned at the same height. Continue applying pressure with your tension wrench and searching for that sweet spot with your pick until you have found it. Once this spot is located, you will need to gently turn in an increased degree of pressure applied by both tools until you hear a click sound indicating that it has unlocked.

Test the lock to make sure it’s open

Before attempting to break into an interior door lock, you should take the time to test it. Even a skilled locksmith can make the mistake of assuming a space is locked when it is actually unlocked. To test if the lock is open, simply insert a key – or other thin object – into the keyhole and turn it. If this action does not result in resistance from the lock, chances are that it is already unlocked and does not need to be broken into.

If you find that the lock is indeed locked, one of several methods can be used for breaking into an interior door lock. Depending on your skill level, tools available, and type of lock being breached, you may choose one option over another to complete the task. It’s important to remember that certain methods may do more damage than others and be aware that some jurisdictions make it illegal to break into a door without permission from the owner or property manager.

More advanced options such as using a bump key or rake pick require more skill than simple tools like screwdrivers or credit cards but often provide faster results with less damage done to both the door and its locksmithing components. It’s also important to note that many high-end door locks require special procedures; research should be done before attempting any of these techniques on these types of locksets for best results.


Breaking into an interior door lock can be a tedious process, and it is not always successful. If you do manage to access the door, you should check to see if the lock has been damaged and needs to be replaced. With the right tools and patience, however, you can learn how to break into an interior door lock. In this article, we have discussed several methods such as lock bumping technique that you can use to try and gain entry into your door lock.

Replace the lock if necessary

If your interior door lock cannot be opened with the methods described above, you may need to replace it. This is generally a simple process, but you may want to consult a professional locksmith to help ensure that the new lock is properly installed and secured.

Before replacing the lock, take time to assess your security needs. If the old lock was easily picked or opened using other methods, then it may have been weak or faulty and simply replacing it with another weak/faulty lock will not do any good. Invest in a high-quality lock that provides maximum security for your home or office.

When selecting a new interior door Lock, consider two primary choices: cylindrical locks and mortise locks. Cylindrical locks are commonly used in residential homes and all types of buildings because they are relatively inexpensive and easier to install than other locking mechanisms. A mortise-style lock is inserted into the door itself for extra strength and added security – these locks are popular for businesses and commercial applications but tend to be more costly than cylindrical style locks. Consider both options carefully before making your selection so you can get a reliable, secure lock that meets the security needs of your home or business while staying within budget.

Check for any additional security features

Before you attempt to break into an interior door lock, it is important to examine the area around the lock and look for any additional security features that might be in place. These features can range from something as simple as a deadbolt to a more sophisticated home security system.

If a deadbolt is visible, try to determine if it uses a key or has been activated using a combination of buttons. If it is the latter, you will need to know the combination in order to unlock the door. If there is no visible deadbolt, check for additional locks on either side of the door, such as pins or latch plates which may require special tools or picks in order to open.

In addition, be aware that some doors will utilize smart technology such as card readers or biometrics (fingerprint scanners). In these cases you may need specialized tools and expertise in order to gain entry. It is also important to note that any tampering with these kinds of locks can trigger an alert on your home security system and alert authorities. Therefore, it is best practice to take precautions before attempting any form of forced entry into an interior door with added security features.

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