Opening a Broken Safe

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Opening a Broken Safe

Post by Flash » Wed Jun 14, 2017 2:02 pm

In another forum, someone was complaining about how his gun safe electronic lock had failed, and how he had to get a locksmith to drill his safe to open it, pay to remove and scrap the safe, and buy a replacement.

Electronic locks are more prone to failure than mechanical locks, but they're so handy for quick access, multiple combinations, and the ability to change combinations easily. Mechanical locks need periodic maintenance to ensure that they'll work reliably. But if your lock does fail, you don't need to go to all the trouble and expense that this person did.

1. Don't call a locksmith. Most locksmiths are not trained to open safes properly and will often destroy it to get it open. Find a qualified safe technician at

2. A qualified safe technician should be able to open your safe for a flat rate without permanent damage. An untrained locksmith may trigger a relocker which will make the job harder and take longer.

3. The majority of gun safes are imported, and it might be hard to find a replacement lock with the right footprint, but the safe technician can locate one or make whatever modifications are needed to make it work reliably.

4. The safe technician can repair the damage from drilling by welding in a hardened steel pin. After a paint touch-up, the damage won't be noticeable, nor will it compromise the security and value of the safe.

For electronic locks, try replacing the battery with a new high quality name brand one (Duracell) first, even if you haven't gotten a low battery indication. With a mechanical lock, call a technician for service if it doesn't work as smoothly as it did when new, when you have to dial the combination multiple times to open it, or if the numbers you dial start to "slip" (ie: the number is 20, but it starts to work closer to 19 or 21 instead). Keep the safe unlocked until the technician can check it out.

Following these tips will save you money and aggravation if your safe lock fails.

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Re: Opening a Broken Safe

Post by Illini95 » Fri Jun 30, 2017 3:44 pm

Thanks for the info! I need to change the battery in my safe tonight! I haven't changed it in the 3 years we have had it!

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