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How to Reverse a 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

How to Reverse a Door Lock-If you have ever been locked out of your house before, you know how frustrating it can be.

Determine the Type of Door Lock

Reversing a door lock can seem intimidating, but it is actually not as complicated as you might think. Before you can start reversing your door lock, the first thing you must do is determine the type of lock you have. Common types of locks include knob locks, deadbolts, and lever handle locks. Identifying the type of lock is necessary for you to move forward in the reverse process.

Identify the type of lock

Before you can reverse the door lock, you need to identify the type of mechanism that locks your door. The most common type of home lock is the cylindrical lock. It features a cylinder that rides on a shaft and controls both the latch and deadbolt. Other types include mortise locks, rim locks, surface-mounted locks and electronic locks.

If your lock has an exposed cylinder in the center of a doorknob it is likely a cylindrical lock. These come in two varieties: those with removable cores and those without them (non-detachable). To identify these two kinds, check to see if you can see a small hole on one side of the cylinder housing; if there is one, then you have a detachable core with an accompanying keyway for inserting keys. Identifying mortise locks is slightly more complicated as they are typically embedded within a mortised (pocket) cut into the face of the door itself. Surface-mounted locks are quite simple – they are installed directly onto facing surface of the door, typically above or below a doorknob or handle assembly. They usually do not require screws as they clip directly onto wood or metal frames using fixed mounting plates on each side. Electronic locks come in many shapes and sizes but are easily recognizable by their use of wires or batteries as their power source and require either keypad or proximity reader access control systems to unlock them.

Identify the type of door

Before attempting to reverse a door lock, you must be sure to correctly identify the type of lock you have. Your lock may be a mortise, cylindrical, knobset or rim type. Each of these are constructed differently and require different reversal techniques.

Mortise locks are most often used in commercial applications like store fronts and offices as they are more secure than other lock types. They have a rectangular shape and fit into a space cut into the door that is known as the mortise pocket. They generally require replacement of both the latch strike plate and locking cylinder in order to reverse them properly.

Cylindrical locks are what you likely imagine when you think of an average door knob; they have a long metal bar connected to one side of the knob with two screws on the interior side of the door. In order to reverse these locks, only one part must be replaced:the rosette or collar on which another piece fits to allow entry from either side of the door.

Knob set locks are less common than other types and can be found both inside homes and in outdoor access points such as garages or sheds. This type of lock is comprised only of two knobs fitted with two faceplates connected by several working parts inside the knob itself. If you wish to reverse your knob set lock, then only one piece needs replacing – the spindle connecting both knobs through pre-drilled holes inside the knobs themselves.

Finally, rim mounted locks (also known as ‘surface-mounted’) feature an inverted ‘L’ shape and will mount directly onto any exterior surface – no pocketing needed! This type is ideal for residential applications as it is speedy installation process compared to other popular choices requiring fewer tools for setup completion unlike others which require saws or drill bits for installation preparation work first! Reversing this kind requires changing out each piece separately – usually just four components outside plus some hardware internally nested within- just like Mortice options mentioned prior rfp!

Prepare for Reversal

Reversing the direction of a door lock is not a difficult process, but it’s important to take the right precautions to ensure a successful job. Before attempting to reverse the door lock, make sure you have the necessary tools and understand any safety concerns that may arise. Once you’ve gathered all the materials and familiarized yourself with the process, you’ll be ready to move forward.

Remove the lock from the door

Removing a door lock is often a simple process that does not require any special tools. The first step to reversing a door lock is to locate the small area at the top of the door that houses the hardware for the locking mechanism. Once you have identified this area, use a flat-blade screwdriver to remove the screws securing it in place. With these screws removed, you can now lift up on the hardware and slide it away from its housing in order to remove it from the door. When sliding out, be aware of any plugs or wires attached to the back of it and detach these before setting aside.

Gather the necessary tools

Reversing the door locks on your home or office can be a straightforward process if you have access to the right tools. To begin, you’ll need the following: a screwdriver, a Phillips head screwdriver, and a small flat-head screwdriver. Additionally, make sure that you have access to a selection of new screws in case some are missing or damaged as part of the procedure.

Once you have assembled your supplies and gathered an understanding of how the lock works, it’s time to start reversing it. Most interior door locks require three screws of varying sizes; two short ones will secure the lock on one side while one longer one secures it from behind. Loosen all three screws enough that they can be removed and stored separately in order to prevent any mix-up when reassembling the lock. With this done, you should then be able to gently disconnect each part of the locking mechanism from its inner frame and replace them back inside in reverse order so that once again your key is at he bottom instead of at the top when entering your room.

Finally, replace all three screws as required with their proper sizes before turning your key to make sure everything is back in working order!

Reverse the Lock

Reversing a door lock can be a simple procedure to change the door knob from locking with a key on one side and a handle on the other side. In order to do this you will require a few simple tools such as a screwdriver and a utility knife. This guide will take you through step-by-step process of how to reverse a door lock quickly and safely.

Remove the screws from the lock

Removing the screws from the door lock is a quick, easy way to reverse a door lock. Depending on the type of lock, you may need to use a Phillips head or flat-head screwdriver. Most doorknobs and handles feature two large faceplate screws secured with nuts at the bottom of the handle, along with one to four other small screws near the outside edges of the faceplate that are used to adjust the fit and functionality of your lock.

Start by loosening any nuts at the bottom of your door handle with pliers and then remove all screws from your door handle or doorknob. Once you have removed all applicable screws from your handle, hold onto both pieces while lightly tapping each side with a hammer or screwdriver to separate them. At this point you should be able to remove any remaining parts associated with either half of your lock assembly, such as levers and plungers. Finally, carefully rotate one part 180 degrees before reassembling it back onto its original setting. Once both halves are reconnected securely, replace any mounting hardware as needed and attempt testing out your new reversed locking mechanism before replacing any full trim pieces around it.

Reverse the latch and bolt

Reversing the latch and bolt on a door involves removing the old hardware, modifying the strike plate and installing the new handle and latch.
Before you get started, you’ll need to familiarize yourself with your door and ensure that it is properly aligned. You should be able to move the handle without resistance, otherwise, the door frame may need to be adjusted before you begin reversing the lock.

Once your door and frame are correctly aligned, start by unscrewing and removing all unnecessary hardware from both sides of the door, including any screws or bolts that secure either lockset or deadbolt into place. Once removed, replace all of these screws with slightly longer ones to accommodate for the new additional thickness of your new handle set.

Next, you’ll need to measure up your existing strike plate – this can usually be found located just above where your latch will sit – so that you know exactly where it needs to be reattached when reversing a lock. Mark these positions in pencil then unscrew it so that it can easily be replaced once all installation is complete.

With your strike plate removed, hold up a latch or deadbolt in its new desired position – typically on a left-handed lock this would mean orientating it towards inward instead of outward – while ensuring that its tail component reaches inside correctly so as to engage correctly with its corresponding component on the interior side of your door. Attach both components into place by using screws of an appropriate length. Then reattach your strike plate as necessary and complete any further adjustments as needed when necessary such as securing cylinder collars or minor tweaks for alignment corrections if need be. Finally test out both locksets before heading out for good!

Reinstall the screws

Reinstalling the screws is an important step in the process of reversing a door lock. Before reinstalling the screws, make sure that both sides of the deadbolt are properly lined up. If one side is higher than the other, you will not be able to install new screws or open and close the lock from either side.

To reassemble your lock after reversing it, start by replacing the screws on the edge of the door with new ones that are slightly longer than your original screws. Place a flat screwdriver through each hole to secure them in place and use a drill bit that has been drilled with metal wire gauge in order to insert the wood screw at an angle through each hole and into its corresponding recess in the edge of your door. As you place each screw into place, make sure it is perfectly even and that there is no sticking or rubbing between any parts of your handle or deadbolt mechanism as this can cause corrosion over time.

Finally, replace all visible screws on both sides of your door to ensure proper installation and performance from your reversed lock. Make sure each screw is properly tightened before testing out your new lockset.

Test the Lock

Before you start to reverse the door lock, it is important to make sure that the lock is working correctly. Checking the lock is a safety measure that will help to ensure that the door lock won’t be damaged during the process. Carry out a simple test of the lock by releasing the mechanism and checking that the lock is working properly.

Test the lock from both sides

Testing a lock from both sides is a key step for properly reversing the door. This should be done before you begin to disassemble the lock, as it will help you assess how much of the lock needs to be taken apart in order to complete the reversal process.

Testing any type of door lock requires that you have access to both sides of the doorway and appropriate tools, such as a key cutting machine. Start by inserting your key into the keyway and turn it slightly on the interior side first. If the key turns freely with no resistance, then you may need to adjust or repair your springs or latching mechanisms to allow for tighter fitting components.

Next, move onto testing from outside by inserting and turning the key cutting machine again, this time with more force if necessary. The key should turn easily if all mechanisms are properly fitted, aligned and working correctly. If you find that it is still difficult to turn in either direction when testing from either side of the doorway, then this may indicate a misaligned deadbolt or other obstruction within your locking mechanisms. You can remove these by taking off your exterior trim plate or knob set, or depending on your type of door knob/deadbolt combination can consult a professional locksmith if any further repair work is needed.

Make sure the door opens and closes properly

Once you have installed the lock on the door and prepared it for use, it is important to test both opening and closing the door. If it is not possible to open or close the door, your lock may need to be adjusted. You can do this by removing the trim plate from the exterior side of the lock and turning one or both of the latch screws using an Allen key until you achieve an ideal fit and finish.

Before beginning, make sure that any spring that is inside the trim plate is pushed inwards, allowing for maximum tolerance when adjusting the latch screws. You will also want to check that all of your security measures have been properly installed first, such as deadbolts or strike plates before making any adjustments. Once you are ready, turn each latch screw in a clockwise direction until you achieve a secure fit against the doorframe. Be aware that turning one screw too many times can prevent proper operation of opening or closing after installation.

Once adjustments are complete, test out your new lock several times by opening and closing the door both while unlocked and then again with a key inserted into lock cylinder. Re-install any trim plates and make sure all components are seated properly before fully utilizing your new system.

Final Touches

The last step in reversing a door lock is to make sure all the components are properly secured. This includes ensuring the screws are tightened, the latch is properly adjusted, and the door handle is securely in place. Once the final steps have been taken, the lock should be tested to make sure it functions properly. If all is in order, the door should be able to be opened and closed securely.

Clean and lubricate the lock

Reversing a door lock is a relatively simple task, but it’s always important to finish up the job correctly. Once you’ve fitted the new door lock and perform the necessary adjustments, it’s time to make sure the lock is clean and lubricated before use.

To begin, dust off any dirt or grime from the exterior of the lock before cleaning internally. You can use a soft brush such as a cotton swab, toothbrush or small paintbrush to gently remove dirt, rust and other debris. Air compressors are also effective for blowing small particles out of complex parts. Use light oil such as WD-40 or silicon spray to lubricate all moving parts inside.

When lubricating your lock hardware, be sure not to overdo it – too much oil can damage mechanisms inside and potentially cause problems in future use. And remember: even with careful maintenance, locks will eventually wear out and require replacement over time!

Reinstall the lock onto the door

Once you have the lock disassembled and your new components in place, reassemble the lock and install it back on the door. Start by inserting the new latch assembly into the door edge. Make sure that it slides in deep enough to allow the retainers to engage; if necessary, adjust the retainer screws prior to installing the other components. Place any keepers on their respective sides of the door and insert any screws that are required to secure them.

Next, install any additional components (including follower plates, strike plates, trims or additions). When they are all properly placed, fasten them firmly with a screwdriver. After this is complete, fit everything onto one side of the door and fix with a few screws at each joint for increased stability. Finally slide any pins or wires back into their relevant holes with pliers before pronouncing your project complete!

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