How to become a certified locksmith – The art of creating, beating and bending locks is known as locksmithing. It is a type of service that involves rekeying, changing locks, knobs of doors, and cracking safes open – legally though. This profession requires lots of skill and training because the intending professional needs to understand the various complex mechanisms of the locking systems in this modern world.
- 1 Qualities of a good locksmith
- 2 The major qualities that clients look out for in any good locksmiths are:
- 3 Different Types of Locksmith Services
- 4 Things to consider before becoming a locksmith
- 5 Responsibilities of a locksmith
- 6 5 Basic Essential Tools of a Locksmith
- 7 How to become a Certified Locksmith?
Qualities of a good locksmith
Before you decide to become a professional locksmith, you should be aware of the qualities they possess. Without much doubts, locksmiths play a very important role in our present day lives. While they have special roles when it comes to locks, their skills and abilities can also vary.
There are different services offered by locksmiths, as they can specialize either as commercial and resident services.
Residential locksmiths offer simple automotive services like duplicating and making new keys and opening door locks. Meanwhile, commercial locksmiths specialize on corporate and government clients who need a bit high-end lock facilities. They are hired basically to ensure that security is ensured in those commercial facilities.
The major qualities that clients look out for in any good locksmiths are:
- You should be licensed
- In most countries, licensing to become a pro locksmith isn’t really required, but it is an important factor that clients look out for before hiring any locksmith. To get employed by locksmith firms, they also require your license. This post would be treating in details how you can earn your license and become a full fledged locksmith.
- Ability to write estimation for your services
- Before starting out your services, a good locksmith should be able to give out the estimated amount his services would incur. This would help eliminate hidden charges, and it allows your client know how much they need to pay you for your services. Most clients prefer those locksmiths who can draw up an estimate and work with quotations.
- You should charge reasonably for your services
- Charging high doesn’t necessary make you offer high quality services. Also, you should also avoid charging low and unrealistic prices because clients make think you are a fraudster.
Different Types of Locksmith Services
The job of a locksmith isn’t restricted to either picking locks or trying to duplicate keys. Locksmiths in this present dispensation offer a variety of other services. These services cut across several industries. From protecting cars, even up to industrial security, there is a locksmith service that would be of help to individuals. Some of the different types of locksmiths are;
Commercial Locksmith Services
Locksmiths are now beginning to immerse themselves in larger projects as it relates to security. Locksmiths look at offering security services to small establishments, schools, shops, and even large corporations. For commercial services like these mentioned above, professional locksmiths usually provide complex security solutions, which involves security camera and other advanced tools. This means that a professional commercial locksmith service should work for any institution, organization, building or even property, regardless of its size and coverage.
Domestic security involves jobs in residential areas. Improving and maintaining domestic security is one of the major job specifications of a domestic locksmith as many of their clients are homeowners. The main objective of a domestic locksmith is to keep a house safe by installing locks which are effective on gates, doors and even windows.
Domestic locksmiths can go as far as installing an entire locking system throughout a property. This includes installing locks on garages and home additions. There are also advanced features that can be requested from certain clients. Let us consider a situation when a client requests for a safe or a vault in him room. Other than installing basic security services, locksmiths also provide services like key duplication, cutting, and lock picking.
Car Locksmith Services
Automobile locksmiths are kind of special and rare, though they do have an edge. This is basically because specializing in automobile lock smiting is very challenging, which comes as a result of different car brands and models, having their different complicated lock mechanism that the locksmith needs to learn. One of the most common services performed by automobile locksmiths is the replacement of lost ignition keys and the unlocking of cars.
Emergency Locksmith Services
In any event where locksmiths are needed, there is always this option to call a locksmith company that offers emergency services. Service providers have allowed the option of allowing in call-in requests for a locksmith service. This allows troubled individual to easily seek an expert locksmith’s help during dire situations. In a situation people lose their car keys or lock themselves out of the car, they can quickly place a call and relax for a locksmith to come rescue them. Emergency locksmith services also partake in various locksmith activities for owners of properties who are affected by theft; because they would be required to change their lock system immediately.
Things to consider before becoming a locksmith
In selecting a career, locksmith jobs are always overlooked. Nobody has given thought to the simple task of making, repairing, and setting up security locks could lead to a career. The demand for locksmiths is on the increase, and experts have analyzed that the trend could go a lot higher than we are currently experiencing. For every broken key, tricky lock, there is always a need for a locksmith.
This industry is quite small – truth be told, regardless of technological changes and market fluctuations. Although the locksmith job is not regarded as being a professional one yet – due to the absence of a governing body for the job. But there are lots of guilds in existence that supports the trade, offer training course and enhances the skills of their professionals.
Basic requirements for locksmith services include:
To become a locksmith, the intending professional must possess these range of skills and cannot only pop locks by chance. The basic skills should include;
- Good driving skills to reach clients
- Good interest in locks and keys
- Good communication skill
- Interpersonal skill with others
- Basic understanding with locks and security devices
- Fantastic eye-hand connection
- Manual dexterity and practical thinking
- Ability to use an array of specialist tools
- Ability to market and run a business independently
Having a formal education is not really a perquisite while chasing dreams of becoming a locksmith. It is also necessary for one to have an extensive training and apprenticeship to become a certified locksmith. Being a certified locksmith has its own advantages from those who aren’t certified. The following are its advantages;
- It gives you credibility
- It increases the earning potential of any certified locksmith
- It helps in career advancement
The stages of becoming certified would be explained in details in this article. Various training courses and apprenticeships may be obtained from several training centers and associations.
The career of a locksmith differs from other professions out there. A locksmith is given three choices as soon as he becomes a certified locksmith. He may either decide on
- Opening up a locksmith business
- Become a freelance locksmith
- Work for another locksmith.
Unlike other professions, locksmith have limitation in freelancing their skills for high rates, neither do they have the capability of becoming their own bosses as soon as they become certified. So in most cases, they work for others in their entire life. The categories that a locksmith can specialize in have been listed above. Another advanced category that could be broken down into smaller fields is the Locksmith specialist. This category comprises of;
- Automotive system Specialist
- Master Key System Specialist
- Security Consultant
- Residential Locksmith Specialist
- Safe Technician
- Electrical Locksmith Specialist
Based on the categories described above, it is certain that whoever decides to become a locksmith or pursue a locksmith career will not go idle.
Responsibilities of a locksmith
Locksmiths are responsible to utilize their knowledge in the best interest of their clients, since they can bypass most forms of security locks. They are held responsible should in case any of their tools for working falls into the wrong hands. In addition to the above, a locksmith must be so skilled as not to cause damage to a property while attempting to gain entrance. In summary, it means that a locksmith should be so skilled on how to pick a lock rather than damaging it.
5 Basic Essential Tools of a Locksmith
Just like programmers need their laptops and flash drives to write down codes, locksmiths need picks to be able to open locks. Using hairpins for lock-picking is just a figment of movies. Professional locksmiths carry out their duties using specialized set of equipment.
Before you decide to choose a career as a locksmith, you should be exposed to the 4 basic tools you might use all through your career.
Electric Pick Gun: It can be likened to the regular electric driller. They are small drills that run on electricity. Just like the size of drills can be adjusted, the picks have various sizes that can be connected to the pick gun.
Key Extractors: This is also one of the handy tools for a locksmith. In cases where a key snap into two, leaving the key parts wedged in the keyhole, key extractors are used to remove broken materials stuck in the key cylinders.
Plug Spinner: It is an essential tool that is used for reverting locks. To return a plug a default unlocked position, locksmiths employ the use of the plug spinner. The plug spinner is used to rotate, lift, and move the plug.
Tension Wrenches: This tool comes in 3 types. The pressure exerted is a determinant to the type to be used. It has the light, medium, and rigid. Majority of locksmiths carry all three depending on what the situation needs. The basic function of the tension wrench is control the amount of turning pressure to enable the locksmith gain access to the shear line.
There are other tools that a locksmith can use to install, repair, and open locks for clients. Locksmith hammers, key cutters, router drills, deadbolt installation kits are some additional tools used by locksmiths. Learning to use the correct tool is important for both the professional and the client.
For house and vehicle owners, a locksmith’s improper use of his tools can leave a huge damage to the lock or door of your property. For a locksmith, purchasing these basic 4 tools is seen as a long term investment. Doing your job properly with the right tools would lead to a positive review/feedback from customers. When your reputation rises, family and friends can easily refer people to you, and your business expands.
How to become a Certified Locksmith?
Becoming a certified locksmith isn’t difficult. There are several vocational schools that offer certifications in this field. The courses can be completed in two semesters depending on how fast you are.
A certificate in locksmithing comprises of five courses. High school students who are interested in becoming locksmiths should take math, physics, electronics and Mechanical drawing as subjects. The average salary for a locksmith in the U.S is approximately $44,000 per year.
To become a certified locksmith involves just a little investment. This means that it is a career designed for those with little capital but wishes to become employed.
The Associated Locksmiths of America issues out different accreditations for locksmiths including Certified Registered Locksmith (CRL), Certified Masters Locksmith (CML), Registered Lcoksmith (RL), and Certified Automotive Locksmith (CAL). All these accreditations make it necessary you have the required skills and knowledge to work as a locksmith. It also will help you establish yourself as someone well skilled in the field.
Locksmiths who are looking forward to gaining government contracts must become insured or even bonded. Bonding firms do a sort of background check on applicants and require you to pay that work like a sort of insurance. This bond shows the employer that you are not a fraud, and that reimbursement might happen in the case of a shabby work done.
Being a locksmith is a wonderful career opportunity that offers the professional flexible work hours or looking for a part time job to substitute their normal source of income. To become a certified locksmith, all you need to do is just to apply the above steps, and you are good to go.