Want To Change The Locks On My House. DIY Newbie. Can I Swing It? - Windows and Doors - DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum

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Old 12-22-2011, 11:25 AM   #1
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Want to change the locks on my house. DIY newbie. Can I swing it?

So ever since moving into our house ~2 months ago, "change the locks" has been on my TODO list. I have a week off from work, so now seems like a good time to get it done.

Here's what I need/want to do:
  • replace locks/deadbolts on outer doors
  • add deadbolts to 2 outer doors that currently don't have them
  • rekey the locks so that one key opens them all

I don't want to spend a fortune having a locksmith come and do these items. What difficulty level is this? Should I try it myself or just call a professional?


Also, can someone recommend what is a good brand/type of lock?


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Old 12-22-2011, 11:47 AM   #2
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The only hard part is drilling new holes for the new deadbolts.
Do you have a drill for this?

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Old 12-22-2011, 12:11 PM   #3
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Assuming you have a drill, you can go to Lowes or HD and buy a kit that includes everything you need to drill the holes in the correct position. I think they run around $30 for the kit.
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Old 12-22-2011, 12:12 PM   #4
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Yes. You should be able to do it.
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Old 12-22-2011, 12:12 PM   #5
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I know Lowe's sells a bunch of locksets. One of them is Schlage. Schlage has this feature whereby you can rekey your own lock. So you buy 5 locksets, and each one might have it's own key. Each one also comes with a "rekey" key, it is grey in color. You insert the grey key, turn it to about 2 o'clock, remove it. now insert the key you WANT to use in that lock, reset it to 12 o'clock and you're done.

Check if you have a Lowe's or HD near you, I'm pretty sure other brands do it now too.
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Old 12-22-2011, 12:17 PM   #6
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Difficulty level = 2 or 3 on a scale of one to ten. 1 or 2 if you're handy. Kits not necessary either since any deadbolt you buy will include a template to assure you get it aligned correctly for your door thickness.

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Old 12-22-2011, 01:01 PM   #7
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For the locksets, layout both sides of the door, so that you drill halfway through from each side, which eliminates damage to the surface of the door, and ensures that everything lines up good. While you are at it, replace the standard 3/4" or so striker screws with longer ones that will screw into the framing members, and, if you haven't already done so, replace at least 2 of the screws in each hinge with longer screws. I agree with DM's rating on the difficulty level. I happen to like Schlages as well, not necessarily for the reason that Doug mentioned, but have found them to be a good lock for that price range. Lastly, I installed keyless deadbolts in our home, 3 or 4 years ago, and we like those; makes it handy when just leaving for a walk or whatever.

Last edited by DexterII; 12-22-2011 at 01:05 PM.
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Old 12-23-2011, 03:34 PM   #8
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Not too hard, just keep in mind if you have any steel doors you will need proper bits for drilling.

Check what the backset is on the locks before you go drilling holes in the door, most are adjustable however some aren't. Personally I like using the jigs for this, the cheap ones at HD should work fine for a few doors.


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