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How to Drill Out a Garage Door Lock

Updated February 21, 2017

Most garages come equipped with a side entry outswing door that allows homeowners to enter and exit the garage space without having to raise and lower the large garage door. Like most exterior doors, these garage doors come equipped with a lock to secure the garage. But as with other locks, these can become frozen or the key is lost, making the lock unusable. Rather than call a locksmith, you can simply drill out the old lock and replace it.

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  1. Select a drill bit that is small enough in diameter to fit into the garage door lock through the cylinder or keyhole.

  2. Insert the bit into the drill and tighten the drill's chuck to hold the bit firmly in place.

  3. Put on safety goggles and gloves. Insert the drill bit into the cylinder where the key would normally go. Close the door and leave the lock in the unlocked position, if possible.

  4. Set the drill on its lowest drill setting to begin, then pull the trigger and drill into the cylinder, putting your weight behind the drill. Continue to drill straight through the lock until the bit breaks through to the other side.

  5. Back the drill bit out of the lock on the garage door, then allow the bit to cool off. Once cool, select a much larger bit and insert it into the drill.

  6. Drill into the garage door lock again. This will displace and/or break the pins inside the lock, making the lock free and able to be taken out of the garage door. You can now remove the lock entirely and replace it.

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Things You'll Need

  • Drill
  • Metal bits
  • Safety goggles
  • Gloves

About the Author

Owen Richason grew up working in his family's small contracting business. He later became an outplacement consultant, then a retail business consultant. Richason is a former personal finance and business writer for "Tampa Bay Business and Financier." He now writes for various publications, websites and blogs.

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