Do you have a file cabinet with a lock that you can’t seem to open? Don’t worry; we’re here to help. Filing lock cabinets are a great way to organize your office and keep your documents safe. However, if you can’t open the file cabinet lock, then it’s as good as useless!
This blog post will discuss how to open a file cabinet lock. We will provide several methods that should work for most file cabinets. So don’t worry – if you get locked out of your file cabinet, we have you covered!
What a file lock cabinet is, and what it’s used for
A file lock cabinet is a type of storage cabinet designed to protect documents from being tampered with or stolen. The cabinet is usually made of metal and has a locked door that can only be opened with a key or combination.
Some file lock cabinets also have a locking mechanism on the drawer to prevent it from being opened without the key. File lock cabinets are often used in offices and businesses to store important documents such as financial records, legal documents, and sensitive customer information.
They are also used in homes to protect important papers such as birth certificates and tax records.
Use a Paper Clip
While opening a file lock cabinet without a key may seem daunting, it is relatively easy to do with the right tools and a little bit of know-how. In this guide, we will use a paper clip. This is probably the easiest way to pick a lock, but it only works on simple locks.
- Start by straightening out a paper clip, so it is long and thin. You can use your hands for this or a pair of pliers.
- Next, bend the tip of the paper clip at a 90-degree angle. This will be used to push down the pins inside the lock.
- Insert the paper clip into the lock’s keyhole and try to feel for the unlock position. This is usually a spot where the paper clip doesn’t catch.
- Once you’ve found the unlock position, turn the paper clip clockwise until the keyhole is horizontally aligned. This is the position of most locks when open.
- Remove the paper clip and open the file cabinet.
Use a bobby pin
If you don’t have a paper clip or are unsure how to use it, don’t worry! There are other ways to open a file lock cabinet without a key. One of these is a bobby pin. This item is just like a paper clip, so you won’t have trouble understanding how to use it.
- Start by taking a bobby pin and straightening it with your hands or pliers.
- Next, bend the tip of the bobby pin at a 90-degree angle so that you can use it to push down on the pins
- Now, insert the bobby pin into the keyhole of the lock. Try to feel for the unlock position by moving the bobby pin around until you find a spot where it doesn’t catch.
- Once you’ve found the unlock position, turn the bobby pin clockwise until the keyhole is horizontally aligned. Remove the bobby pin and open up the file cabinet!
Nail Clipper File
Anil clipper file can also be used in place of a bobby pin. When it comes to lock-picking tools, a fingernail clipper is just as good as a paperclip that has been straightened out. However, the file must be of the type with a curved tip, not a straight-tipped one. This is because the curved tip will allow you to apply pressure on the pins inside the lock more easily.
- Insert the nail clipper file into the keyhole and push. The idea is to use the file to push the pins up until they’re all in the correct position.
- Ensure that the curve tip faces downwards so you can push down on the lock’s pins.
- As we did from the first two methods, find the unlock position by turning the file left and right until you feel it “click” into place.
- When you feel no resistance to moving the file up and down, you’ve reached all the pins and can now turn the file clockwise or counter-clockwise to access the unlock position.
Use Hammer + Screwdriver
One way to open a locked file cabinet is using a hammer and screwdriver. This shouldn’t be your first choice as it can potentially damage the cabinet. However, if you’re in a bind and need to get into your locked file cabinet, this method could work for you.
- First, take out the screws that are holding the lock in place.
- Use the screwdriver to pry open the lock.
- Once you’ve pried it open enough, use the hammer to hit the screwdriver and break the lock.
- By doing this, you can easily open the locked file cabinet.
Use a Hacksaw
Another way to open a locked file cabinet is by using a hacksaw. You can find one in your garage or local hardware store. While it is not recommended to use this as your first choice, this will surely work if you are desperate to open your file cabinet. To use this to open your filing cabinet:
- First, take out the screws that are holding the lock in place.
- Then, use the hacksaw to cut through the metal of the lock.
- Once you’ve cut through it, you can now easily open the locked file cabinet
Use a Drill
A drill is one of the most effective ways to open a locked file cabinet. Begin by drilling through the pins with a slightly broader than a keyhole drill bit. There are chances it won’t work for smaller drills, so if this is your case, try using bigger drill bits to drill completely through the lock cylinder. To do this:
- Put on safety glasses for safety.
- Mark the center of the keyhole with a felt-tip pen.
- Place the tip of the drill bit on the mark, and hold it steady.
- Start the drill, and apply gentle pressure as you work.
- Drill through the lock cylinder, being careful not to damage the surrounding wood.
- Remove the lock cylinder from the file cabinet.
- Open the file cabinet door.
You should be able to easily unscrew the lock using a screwdriver after you’re done.
Pry the File Cabinet
If you don’t have a drill on hand, you can try to pry open the file cabinet with a pry bar. You can purchase this tool at any hardware store. Simply insert the pry bar into the space between the lock and the file cabinet.
Then, use leverage to pry open the lock. Use a pry bar to apply pressure and force the cabinet to bend open. If the cabinet is made of thin sheet metal, it will be easier to bend. However, this method requires some physical effort to successfully open the cabinet.
Use Bolt Cutters
Using bolt cutters is one of the quickest ways to open a locked file cabinet. All you need to do is cut through the lock cylinder with the bolt cutters, and the cabinet will be opened in no time. However, this method will damage your lock beyond repair, so use it as a last resort. To use this:
- First, find the right size of bolt cutters. The jaws need to be big enough to fit around the lock cylinder.
- Second, open the jaws of the bolt cutters and place them around the lock cylinder.
- Third, close the jaws of the bolt cutters to cut through the lock cylinder. fourth, once you’ve cut through the lock cylinder, you can now easily open the locked file cabinet.
Seek Locksmith Help
If you fail to use all the methods above, you can always seek professional help from a locksmith. They have the types of equipment and expertise to quickly and easily open a locked file cabinet. They also have enough knowledge to remove a broken lock. They can also provide you with a new lock if needed.
They also know various ways of dealing with locked file cabinets, so if you do not mind spending some money, that is also an option. At Cobb Parkway Locksmith, our team of locksmiths is always ready to help you with your lock needs.
We can open your file lock cabinet without damaging it and provide you with a more secure file lock cabinet to prevent future break-ins. Contact us today for more information!
Types Of File Lock Cabinet
You might wonder if your filing cabinet can be opened using the abovementioned methods. To end your curiosity, below are different file cabinet locks.
- Pin tumbler locks
- Wafer tumbler locks
- Lever tumbler locks
- Magnetic locks
- Electromagnetic locks
- Keyed cam locks
- Keyless cabinet and combination locks
- Chest or lid locks
- Locks with tubular cylinders
- Lock bars
- Sliding and plunger locks
If your file cabinet is locked and you need to get into it, there are a few methods you can try. You don’t even need to spend a lot, as the tools you can use can be found at your local hardware store. However, if you have a budget, you can spend on hiring a professional locksmith to do the job for you.
Whatever method you choose, ensure you take the necessary precautions to avoid damaging your file lock cabinet and its contents. If you need further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact locksmith Marietta GA today! We would be more than happy to help you out.