Think twice before calling one of those $15 locksmith ads. You need to have a lot of trust in the person who rekeys your house for a few reasons:
- You don’t know if they use the same keys for every house they rekey
- You don’t know if they used all of the pins in the lock or dropped most of them
- You don’t know if they kept a copy of the working key and labeled it with the address to sell to some enterprising burglar later. They might be writing down what you have to steal while walking through your house to put your locks back on
- You don’t know if some stranger from a fly-by-night company might be stealing stuff from your house while there
- You don’t know if they will file down the plug of your lock cylinder, making it less secure.
Here is a lock cylinder from a business in South Seattle that hired a real idiot to rekey their business. They said he seemed really weird and had an outlandish accent. I gave them this picture as evidence the guy didn’t do his job, they reversed the charges on their credit card and filed a complaint with the state Attorney General.
Here are some pictures I took of locks I was hired to rekey. The last person to rekey them removed all of the pins except one or two. This lowers the effectiveness of these locks by 60-80%.
Here is a picture that shows something that lazy or inept locksmiths sometimes do: filing down the plug. All locksmiths used to file pins back when there were only a few sizes of pins due to the cost of machining. This is no longer necessary. Pins are available in increments of .003 inches. There is literally no reason to file down a plug.