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Frequently Asked Questions

Locks & Keys

Q: My door is hard to lock; I have to push or pull with great force to get it (un)locked. Why is this? It was fine before.

A: Buildings tend to shift and settle over time. Wood tends to expand during humid weather, and contract during dry weather. Because of this, the lock’s latch and its corresponding strike plate become out of alignment and need to be adjusted.

Q: My key is difficult to turn, should I force the key until it turns?

A: No! Too much force on a key will likely cause it to break off inside the lock. When your locks Become hard to turn, or snap/stick when you turn your key; then it needs to be re-keyed to the proper pin height to match the key you are trying to use.

Q: My key just stopped working suddenly. Why did this happen?

A: Either the lock could be dry or seized, and needs lubrication; or your key or lock (or both) could be worn and require either a code cut key or the cylinder to be re-keyed to factory specs.

Q: Can I use WD-40 or graphite in my locks?

A: Never use either in a vehicle lock, as over time, this can inhibit the moving parts and attract dust, causing lock failure. Graphite should only be used sparingly in residential and commercial-style locks. Rather than WD-40 we recommend a Teflon or silicon based lubricant such as Tri-Flow.

Q: Sometimes I need to jiggle the key in the lock to get it to turn. What should I do?

A: This means that either the key, the lock, or both is worn; and you’re best to get a code cut key made. If this doesn’t help, then you will likely also need to have your cylinder re-keyed to factory specifications.

Q: I want all my locks on my house to take the same key, can this be done?

A: Yes. If you have a key that slides into all your locks, then we can re-key the locks to be “keyed alike”. If you have a lock (or locks) that the key doesn’t slide into; then those will need to be replaced to the brand of key in question.

Q: Can you supply locks that can be operated by my existing key?

A: Yes. We supply and key new locks to existing keys all the time.

Q: My keys have been stolen, and I need to change my locks. Does this mean I have to buy all new locks?

A: No. We can simply re-key your locks by changing the pins to a new code; rather than going through the added expense of replacement.


Q: What is a transponder key?

A: It is a key with an embedded computer chip that transmits data to your vehicle when you turn it on.

Q: I have a new car with a transponder key. Do I have to go to the dealership to get another key?

A: No. We are equipped to handle the majority of transponder keys on the market today.

Q: My car keys have been stolen. What now?

A: We can rekey your vehicle locks to a new key, and even remove old transponder keys and add new ones for your peace of mind.

Q: I lost the key to my car. Can I get a new key made?

A: Depending on the year/make/model of the vehicle, we can usually cut a key by code for your vehicle. If a code is not available, we can disassemble the locks to determine the key cuts and make a new key.


Q: I just bought a business with a safe and I don’t know the combination. Can you get it open?

A: Yes. Safe opening services are one of our specialties. We can also do repairs after opening a safe to renew its appearance, functionality, and security.

Q: Can you change the combination on my safe?

A: Yes. Our safe and vault technicians can service, reset and change combinations on the majority of safes on the market today.

Q: Is it necessary to service combination safes?

A: Yes. It is recommended to service your safe at least once a year, depending on the amount of use. 

Q: Do you sell safes?

A: Yes. If we don’t have one in stock, we can do special orders to accommodate your needs.

General Info

Q: Can I schedule a specific appointment time?

A Yes. We will do our best to work with your schedule. Appointments are on a first come, first serve basis.

Q: Do you have mobile service?

A: Yes. We service all of Southern Alberta, and parts of British Columbia and Saskatchewan.

Q: Do you have an after-hours emergency service?

A: Yes. We provide a limited after-hours emergency service for your convenience.

Q: What types of payment do you accept?

A: We accept cash, Visa, Mastercard, AMEX, and debit card payments. We also have mobile debit/credit machines for your convenience.

Q: Why should I make sure that I hire a licensed, professional locksmith?

A: Unfortunately, there are individuals out there who are working as locksmiths, but are not licensed. Often, these inexperienced and unprofessional “locksmiths” are simply trying to earn as much money as possible; thus resulting in them giving misleading information. Only a licensed locksmith can give you qualified advice and recommendations regarding security solutions for your home or business.  Take a look

at this helpful article from the Professional Locksmith Association of Alberta:

Did we answer your question? If not, send us a message, give us a call, or stop by the shop for more information.


Professional Service

Professional and friendly people. I've had keys cut, doors picked and locks redone here for business, personal, and rentals over several years and they've always been great!
- Devin A.

Friendly Staff

Only place for keys! Friendly staff.
- Otter Man

A Good Guy

Good guy helped me on heritage! Thanks man house coat and all!
- Lawrence S.


Active Lock & Safe Ltd

245E 12A Street N

Lethbridge, AB T1H 2J2

Phone: 403-329-1026

Phone: 1-888-329-1026

Fax: 403-329-1279



Sunday Closed

Monday - Friday 08:30 AM - 05:00 PM

Saturday Closed

Service Area

Southern Alberta & beyond


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