Key Duplication Dos and Don’ts

Key duplication is something we have all dealt with at some point in our lives. Maybe a friend or family member needs access to your property or maybe you just want an extra in case something happens to your original key. 

However, many don’t realize that there is more nuance that goes into key duplication. While key cutting kiosks are popping up everywhere these days, they may not always be the best solution. You should make sure you’re copying a key correctly to ensure that there aren’t any issues with your new keys. 

Here are some of the more common dos and don’ts of key duplication.  

Do Use the Correct Blank

While the key cutting kiosk at your local supermarket may seem like its the best choice due to convenience, they may not always have the right blank for your key. When you are duplicating a key for a home, finding the right key blank is fairly simple. You should just make sure that you choose a key blank that is as similar to the original key as possible so that it is a more accurate cut. 

However, when you are duplicating a key for your commercial space, finding the right key may take a little extra work. In this case, it is best to get your trusted locksmith you cut your key for you. This way you aren’t at risk for having a faulty key for your business and you won’t have to worry about finding the correct blank. 

Don’t Duplicate a Duplicate

Over time, duplicating can cause the original mould to be somewhat worn down. A good way to ensure that you are duplicating a key that has the right shape is to have it decoded. However, even after this, it is always best to have the original key when you are making duplicates, this way you are sure you’re getting the proper shape. 

Do Go to a Locksmith if You Don’t Have the Original

If you do not have the original key to cut or it has worn down and lost its shape over time, there is another solution. Professional locksmiths have code cutters that can identify the groove depths. This is used to get your lock’s key code to ensure that the duplicate that is made is as close to the original as possible. Even with all of this, it is still not recommended that you create a duplicate if you do not have the original. 

Don’t Use Old Key Duplicate Machines

Key duplication kiosks are very convenient due to being in many stores these days but over time, these kiosks become more and more unreliable. Most do a decent job duplicating when they are brand new but there is no way of knowing if they have been calibrated correctly recently or if they are being maintained at all. Because of this, you can never be sure if the key duplicating kiosk is working as it should. If you do want to be certain that you are getting an accurate key than you should visit your local locksmith so they can professionally create a key duplicate for you. 

Here is a list of ways to determine if you have a good key duplicate: 

  • Does the new key line up or match up with the grooves of your original key?
  • Does the number of the blank match with the number on the original key?
  • Was the original key worn?
  • Was it a duplicate of a duplicate?
  • Was it copied by a locksmith or a department store?
  • Was your original key broken or bent? 

These are some of the dos and don’ts of key duplication. It is important to make sure that the duplication you’re making is good quality or it will not work as it should. Also, the more accurate your duplication is, the more of a chance you will have for a locksmith to properly duplicate it if you ever happen to lose the original.

The best way to ensure you get a good key duplicate is to work with professional locksmiths. Reach out to Capital Locksmith for residential and commercial key duplication. We also offer lock repairs and installing new locks for your residential and commercial space. Call us at (613) 457-5135 for 24/7 Ottawa locksmith services.