Can A Locksmith Make A Key From A Lock? How Do They Do It?

Key Takeaway

  • Yes, it is possible for a locksmith to make a key from a lock without the original key.
  • This can be done by using the codes on the lock, creating a key impression using the lock, or disassembling the lock. 
  • Professional locksmiths are trained and experienced in making new keys from locks and should be consulted for secure key-making solutions.

Nobody wants to face the ordeal of losing the key to your lock. That too, when you don’t have duplicate keys stashed up. 

In the event that you can’t find your key or it’s been lost, stolen, or broken, the first thing that often crosses our heads is to either pick the lock or reach out to a locksmith to break it open. But have you ever lost your house key and wondered if a locksmith could make a new one from your lock? Well, if you haven’t, then you should!

A locksmith can make a new key for your lock without the original key, and there are several ways they can do it. In this blog post, we’ll explore the different methods locksmiths use to make new keys from a lock without the original key.

Can A Locksmith Make A Key Without The Original?

If you have lost or misplaced your key, you might be wondering if a locksmith can make a new key for your lock without an original. The answer is yes! With the right tools and techniques, a professional locksmith can create a new key for your lock without an original. 

The cost of getting a locksmith to make a new key from a lock without the original key can vary depending on the type of lock, the complexity of the key, and the location of the locksmith. Generally speaking, most locksmiths will charge between $50-$100 for making a new key from a lock. This price may be higher if additional services are required, such as replacing the lock or installing a new key system.

It is also important to note that some locksmiths may require a minimum call-out fee before they will come to your location. This fee can range from $20-$50, depending on the distance and type of service needed. It is best to get an estimate before hiring a locksmith so you can be sure you know what you are paying for.

How Do Locksmiths Make Keys Without Original

There are three primary ways that a locksmith can make a new key without an original. 

The first is by decoding the lock’s code. This requires the locksmith to use a specialized code reader to determine the exact code of the lock. They can then use this code to generate a new key. 

The second way is by creating an impression of the lock. This is done by taking a blank key and inserting it into the lock. The locksmith will then use special impressioning tools to create a duplicate of the key. 

The third way is by disassembling the lock. If a locksmith can disassemble the lock, they can get access to its internal parts, which can give them information that can be used to create a new key. 

In this section of the article, we learn the know-how of these procedures in detail.

Making A Key By Using The Codes

Making A Key By Using The Codes

The process of cutting a key with the aid of a key code is a comparatively straightforward way for a locksmith to produce a replacement key for a lock when the original key is unavailable. Nevertheless, it is not a guarantee that the key of every lock can be reconstructed through this method.

A key code, otherwise known as a bitting code, is a set of characters that describe the size and cut of a particular lock’s key. In some cases, this code may be printed onto the key but is never etched onto the lock. If a picture of the key is available, which is less likely, then the key can be replicated with ease. Alternatively, it is possible to trace the code through the model number of the lock.

Making A Key By Using The Codes

High-security locks and reputed brands generally come with user manuals that display the key code. If all else fails, one can contact the manufacturer or the retailer to find out if they can provide the key code.

Nonetheless, the code is typically given only to professional locksmiths who are properly certified, not to untrained professionals.

If one is lucky enough to obtain or find out the code for the lock, a new key can be created without the need for the original key. On the other hand, there are other techniques that can be used if this does not work.

Making A Key By Creating The Key Impression Using The Lock

Making A Key By Creating The Key Impression Using The Lock

Making a key through the process of impressioning is more effective than decoding the key code if you do not have access to it. This is because the process involves taking impressions of the lock from the inside in order to create the key. As a result, most locksmiths prefer this approach over others.

In order to make the key, a blank key is inserted into the lock and turned so that the impressions from the inside of the lock are made on the key. By doing this, the pins press against the key and leave marks that indicate where the key should be cut. The procedure is done several times in order to guarantee that the key is cut accurately.

With enough trial runs, the locksmith will eventually produce a key capable of unlocking the lock – a feat that is only possible with a trained specialist and the correct tools. This is one reason there are fewer locksmiths compared to plumbers or electricians.

Making A Key By Dissembling The Lock

Making A Key By Dissembling The Lock

If the key code of your lock cannot be located and the locksmith is unable to create an impression of the key, dissembling the lock may be the only remaining option to produce a duplicate key without the original. This method is far more complex than making an impression of the key, yet it may be necessary if the impressioning process is not successful.

The disassembling of the lock requires opening it to gain access to the internal components. The lock cylinder is then taken apart to discern the bitting or codes of the key by inspecting the pins and tumblers within the cylinder’s alignment and size.

Picking the lock is necessary to disassemble it, so the robustness of the lock will influence the difficulty of dissembling. With in-built locks, the locksmith will have to take the lock out of the door to disassemble it completely.

In order to disassemble the lock without damaging it, it is crucial for the job to be done by an experienced professional.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1. Can locksmiths make keys for any lock without the original key?

Answer – It is not possible to create a duplicate key for all locks as certain locks contain special security measures which make it almost impossible to cut the key without the original one. Therefore, in the event of losing the keys, replacing the lock is the only viable solution.  

Q2. How is rekeying the lock different from making a duplicate key for the lock?

Answer – Rekeying the lock is different from making a duplicate key for the lock, as rekeying only changes the internal components of the lock, while making a duplicate key requires making a new key from the existing lock. Rekeying is a process of reconfiguring the pins of the lock so that the existing key no longer works and a new one can be used. It is generally done by a locksmith and is a cheaper option than replacing the lock or getting a duplicate key.


Making a key from a lock is a challenging but possible task. It requires knowledge of the lock’s inner workings, as well as a good eye for detail. Depending on the type of lock and its construction, locksmiths may use various techniques, such as making a key by using the codes, making a key by creating the key impression using the lock, or making a key by dissembling the lock. Whatever the technique used, a skilled locksmith can make a new key from an existing lock in no time.

If you found the information useful, do share it with your friends and family and leave a comment in the comment section. Thank you for reading.

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Hey! I am Mark. Though I am not a locksmith by profession, but locks have always fascinated me since my teens. And it all started when I got locked out of my house and I had to pick the lock. Since then it has become my hobby to learn more about different kinds of locks, understand their working and methods to pick them up. In due course of time, I have also become better aware of how installing the right lock goes a long way in ensuring iron clad security. I aim to share my passion (about locks) through this blog. If you are also passionate about picking locks or are just looking to beef up the security, hop on the ride.