Do you know what a skeleton key is? Although it might not be evident from the name, a skeleton key can open almost any lock that you use it on. Don’t let the creepy name confuse or scare you. Here is some more information about skeleton keys. Please read on to learn more!
What Does A Skeleton Key Look Like?
You’ll know a skeleton key when you see. Each skeleton key has a large ring, or hoop on one end. The so-called “body” of such a key is thin, designed to flare out into the key’s blade at the other end. These keys are most effective when opening lever-based locks. They can also be used to open a warded lock, but they can’t magically open any warded lock, and we’ll explain why.
You see, a warded lock increases the lock’s ability to remain secure against any attempted entry. Unlike average keys, a skeleton key is stripped down so it doesn’t disturb the wards on a warded lock. Wards were first installed on such locks to discourage the use of such keys and prevent burglars and fake locksmiths from gaining access where they shouldn’t. These wards proved to be highly effective, to the point where skeleton keys fell out of favor and wards became more common. Wards are most frequently placed both on the outside of the lock mechanism and on the inside as well. Now, skeleton keys are rare, only used to open up cabinets or other pieces of furniture.
Used as Master Keys
However, skeleton keys can also be used as master keys, particularly in businesses where many locked doors are encountered, such as hotels. When a skeleton key is used as a master key, it can unlock the levers of a lever-based lock. These keys can move the levers and wards, which means they have been cut to the right size. The lever lock system has the same levers for each door, but at the same time, these doors would have different wards. What this means is every door would have its own key, but a master key can be a backup to prevent an accidental lockout. Doors and locks without a ward system, however, would only rely on the levers. Locksmiths can provide you with a master key if you should need one.
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