Locksmith Lingo

Here are a few terms that can help you explain what you need.

A system added to deter theft. This can include computer chips or a transponder.

Anywhere you put a key. Sometimes referred to as a keyhole. This houses the pins/wafers that determine the cuts on your key. Single cylinder locks have one cylinder and a thumb turn. Double cylinder locks have two cylinders.

A general term for advanced keying methods or hardware. This may include computer/micro chips or transmitter. These types of keys are not remotes.

A number, sometimes containing letters, which can be cross-referenced to determine the cuts of a key. Most often provided with the purchase of a new car. Usually found with the paperwork. This is not the VIN.

Millings located on the key that are matched with the cylinder.

Commonly referred to as doorknob. These are the units that hold a door closed. They can be passage function (not locking), privacy (bed and bath; push button lock) or key in knob (keyed entry-accepts a key). Additional functions can include storeroom, classroom, and dormitory.

Often called a bolt, used to hold the door in the frame. They are spring loaded on the knobset. Deadbolts have a bolt that extends and extracts when the key is turned.

Also called a leverset. These are most commonly used on handicapped accessible entries.

Special pinning of a cylinder that allows more than one (different) key to operate it. This is done primarily in commercial applications. Home builders are also using construction master keying in their housing developments.

Uses the locks you currently have in place. The locks are removed from the door, disassembled, and the pinning changed to accept a new key. Your old key no longer works. Up charges apply if you do not have a working key.

Locks or unlocks a car. We currently do not service remotes.

Correction of damage to existing locks or latches. This damage can be a result of wear or abuse. We can assess damage to determine if repair or replacement is needed.

Removal of existing hardware due to design/finish preference or damage. Sometimes replacing hardware requires retrofitting the door prep to accept new hardware.

When upgrading or changing hardware, the existing door prep may need to be changed.

Location on the door frame where the latch or bolt goes in.

Sends information to an on-board computer.

Receives or sends information to an on-board computer.

Round or barrel keys. These are frequently used on drink machine or in burglar alarms.

Passive Anti-Theft System. This is the FORD transponder system. There are several versions since its premiere in 1996. The transponder is not visible and there is often little indication on Ford keys of its presence.

Formerly known as V.A.T.S. Found on GENERAL MOTORS.

A different GM system using magnetic resonance. This does not require a special key. It is contained in the lock body.

GM transponder based anti-theft system. This uses special key blanks that must be programmed into the on-board computer. The transponder is not visible. The blade of the key where it meets the bow (head) will be stamped with PKIII, PKIII+, or the + with have a circle around it. Expect new, updated versions of this system.

Smart Key Immobilizer. This is the DAIMLER-CHRYSLER transponder anti-theft system. Expect changes in this system.

Vehicle Anti-Theft System. This system is used on GENERAL MOTORS vehicles beginning in 1986. This is can be identified by a black pellet in the key blade.

For more questions about terms or to schedule a service call, contact us or call 704-455-6707.