Skip to content

How to Open a Sliding Door Lock from Outside

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

How to Open a Sliding Door Lock from Outside. A step by step guide to gaining entry to your home if you’ve lost or misplaced your key.

Understand the Lock

Sliding door locks are common on many homes and businesses and can be an effective way to secure your property. However, when the lock is activated from the inside, it can be difficult to open from the outside. Understanding the mechanics of a sliding door lock can help you open the door if you are locked out. In this article, we’ll go over the basics of how to open a sliding door lock from the outside.

Identify the type of lock

Before attempting to open a sliding door lock, it is important to identify the type of lock installed. Many sliding glass doors rely on one of two types of locks — a thumbturn lock located on the inside of the door handle or a security bolt.

Thumbturn locks are easy to identify by their cylindrical shape and position on the interior sliding door handle. Theselocks may be opened simply by turning the thumbscrew counterclockwise and unlatching the door from outside.

Security bolt locks are longer than thumbturn locks and are located at the top and bottom corners of an interior sliding glass door handle or panel. They require a special key to unlock them from outside, so it is important that these keys be kept in a safe place for emergency access.

Understand how the lock works

Sliding door locks are simple and straightforward – but understanding the intricacies of their design will help you open them from the outside if necessary. A sliding door lock typically has a metal knob that extends from the door, locks in place at the top of the frame, and features an access key.

When opened from the inside, it is as simple as turning or pushing a button. However, if a key is unavailable or there is no handle on your door type, opening a sliding door lock requires extra steps.

In order to understand how to open this type of lock from outside, it’s important to understand how they function: The lock works by having two separate tracks in the door frame that serve different functions when it’s open and closed. When in its closed position, two small pins slide into openings (or slots) at each end of one track; this effectively prevents movement of that track so that it cannot be opened except by inserting a key into the access opening found on either side of the lock’s cylinder. Also when locked in place, the second track holds tight against the edge of one side of the sliding panel so that one side can’t move away from its framesp It’s important to note however that a sliding glass door may have different style locks such as those operated by levers or even electronic readers with card keys; however their principles remain essentially unchanged although their application requiring additional know-how may vary based on manufacturer guidelines for your specific make model or type.

Prepare to Open the Lock

Opening a sliding door lock from the outside can be a tricky task, especially if the lock is jammed or the key is lost. Therefore, it is important to be well prepared before attempting to open the lock. Depending on the type of lock, you may need to have certain tools or materials on hand such as a screwdriver, lubricant, and a lock-pick set. Additionally, familiarizing yourself with the inner workings of a lock can provide you with a better idea of how to open it. Let’s go over the steps you need to take to prepare to open the lock.

Gather the necessary tools

Before attempting to open the lock from the outside, it’s important to gather the necessary tools. Depending on the type of lock, you may need a flat-head screwdriver, a thin blade tool or a specialty lock-picking tool set. You may also need a combination lock or pick that is compatible with your specific model of door.

For most sliding door locks, you will use either the flat-head or specialty lock pick to coax out the pins that hold the locking mechanism in place. It is essential when picking locks not to force them; too much pressure can damage both machine and pins and make unlocking impossible. Take your time and use slow pressure while manipulating each pin until they are all released at once.

Prepare to break the lock

When you find yourself locked out of a sliding door, it is important to remember that trying to break the lock can cause permanent damage and should be used as a last resort. Before attempting to break the lock, you should strive to open the door using these steps:

1. Check for any accessible pins or screws with which you can open the lock from outside.
2. Try lifting or pushing on the sliding glass door handle before trying more drastic measures. Many times gentle pressure upwards and downwards is all that’s needed.
3. Use a credit card (or similar object) to wedge in between the slideable sides of your lock in order to shift it out of its locked position.
4. If none of these techniques work, then move on to purchasing an emergency door opening tool that you can use into your sliding door’s keychannel as a way of manipulating its internal locking mechanism without causing harm. Note that there are many brands and types of tools available, so be sure to select one based on your specific needs and consult with a locksmith if necessary in order to ensure proper use.
5. If all else fails, consider breaking the lock using an axe or similar tool as an absolute last resort – though doing so runs the risk of causing significant damage and will likely require professional repair afterwards..

Open the Lock

Opening a sliding door lock from outside can be quite challenging. However, there are some methods you can try that may allow you to open the lock without breaking it. In this article, we will discuss the different techniques and tools you can use to successfully open a sliding door lock from outside without damaging the lock.

Try to pick the lock

Picking a sliding door lock can be challenging, but with the right tools and knowledge it is possible to open a lock without damaging it. Before attempting to pick the lock, you should consider other methods of entry, such as using a credit card.

It is important to note that each type of sliding door lock has specific instructions for picking. Depending on the type of lock, you may need a specialized tool such as a hook pick or diamond pick. However, some locks allow for the use of everyday items (such as hairpins) which can make the process easier.

Here are some general tips on how to open a sliding door lock from outside:
-When attempting to pick your specific type of lock, take your time and start at the top of the pins in order to reduce any possible damage that could be caused by overusing certain areas of the cylinder
-Try placing an object (such as a bobby pin) inside the keyway in order to turn and unlock it if there appears to be no other way in
-Make sure you are applying adequate tension while picking so that you don’t over torque pins which will cause damage
-If unsuccessful with this method, consider purchasing specialized tools from your local hardware store in order get access into your home

Use a flathead screwdriver

A flathead screwdriver can be used to easily unlock a sliding door lock from the outside. Depending on the type of lock, you may be able to simply insert the flathead into the hole located in the center of the lock and turn it 90 to unlock. If this approach fails, use a flathead screwdriver to slowly and gently pry off the outer casing of the lock by carefully wedging it between two sides of the casing holds. This will expose an inner latch mechanism which can more easily be unlocked with a flathead screwdriver. When finished, make sure to reattach any removed parts in order for them secure properly when relocked.

Use a drill

If you are attempting to open a sliding door lock from the outside, a drill is one possible solution you can use. Before drilling, however, it’s important to check if there are any hidden screws that may be holding the lock in place. If they are present, remove them before drilling the lock.

When drilling the lock cylinder of a sliding door lock from outside, you will need to select a drill bit that is thin enough to fit inside the hole of the cylinder. Choose one that will make contact with all of its components such as pins and wafers when drilling. Make sure to use enough pressure and go slowly when rotating as applying more pressure could cause damage to its interior components. Once you have drilled all around the inside edge of the cylinder, try pulling it out by hand or using needle nose pliers for assistance.

If this option is not successful then you can switch from the drill bit to an attachment called a ‘lock tool’ which has pins and little protrusions on its edges that let it connect with each individual pin in order to move them up or down, allowing for easy turning once they have been aligned properly. With this tool inserted into your cylinder attempt to turn your lock either direction until it opens. Keep in mind that depending on how damaged or rusted your lockset may be this process might take longer than expected so patience and caution are key factors in success here.

Replace the Lock

Replacing a sliding door lock is one of the most secure and reliable ways of opening a sliding door lock from outside. It involves replacing the entire lock assembly and is a permanent solution to your problem. This method ensures a secure locking system and also prevents the possibility of a break-in. In this article, we’ll explore the different steps required to replace the lock on a sliding door.

Remove the old lock

If you need to replace an existing lock on a sliding door you first need to remove the old lock. This is usually a fairly straightforward process, but depending on the make and model of the existing door lock, it may require more effort. Generally, you will need to start by locating the metal screws that hold the old lock in place and remove them by using an appropriate screwdriver. Once these metal screws have been removed, you can then attempt to pull the lock away from the door frame. This process should allow you to access all of the components that make up the lock, including any associated locks or locksets which may be inside. With these pieces now accessible it is time to begin installing your new sliding door lock.

Install the new lock

Once you have acquired a new lock, you will need to install it so that it is properly secured and functioning. Depending on the type of door and existing hardware, this can be a relatively straightforward process or a more complex one. Before starting, ensure you have read the instructions for your specific lock to ensure proper installation.

To begin, take the door off its track so that it’s easier to access the area where you need to install the lock. Once removed from the track, use a screwdriver to remove any internal fasteners so that you can access the housing for your new lock. Carefully check inside and make sure there are no leftover screws or pieces from your old lock before proceeding with assembly of the new one.

Lay out all of your pieces before beginning assembly and ensure each piece is properly aligned and connected. If necessary, use a drill (or drill bits) on any necessary screws to secure the pieces together in place. Once all pieces are in place, carefully reattach them with any required screws or fasteners. Make sure they’re tight; this is important for security purposes! Finally, insert batteries into your key pad (if applicable) according to manufacturer’s instructions and reattach door on its track-you should now have a working sliding door lock!

Test the new lock

Before attempting to install the new lock, it is important to test that it fits. To do this, insert the old key into the lock on the outside of the door and turn it until it is completely inserted. The lock should open and close smoothly. Once satisfied with the fit, remove the key and proceed with installation.

To begin installing your new lock, remove any existing trim that may be around the door handle and slide out any pins that are holding in place. Unscrew or remove any hardware used to attach components such as screws or nails until all hardware has been removed from both exterior and interior sides of the door. On some doors, you may need to cut away part of the trim before installing new components.

Once all existing components have been removed, measure out a template using a tape measure or piece of cardboard cut to size if desired. Place this template over your sliding door handle and use it as a guide for drilling holes for attaching components together. Make sure not to hold onto any loose screws or drill wings while drilling as they can easily become broken or cause injury if mishandled during installation process. Lastly, attach all components together in their original positions on both sides of door ensuring that they are tightened correctly for best results.

How to Open a Sliding Door Lock from OutsideCheckout this video:

Share this Article