Keys may be small and unassuming, but they are actually incredibly useful and complex. To start, let’s break down the different types of keys and how they work.
The most common type of key is a standard key, or a pin tumbler lock key. This type of key consists of a metal shaft, also known as a key blade, which features ridges along its length. When the key is inserted into the lock, the ridges on the key blade “pick” the pins, which move outward to form a pattern that will open the lock. Sometimes a separate piece of metal, known as the sidebar, will be required to turn the key and open the lock.
Another type of key is the warded lock key. This type of key is designed to open a warded lock and is made up of two parts: the bit and the bow. The bit is a flat piece of metal that is used to slide between the wards inside the lock and open it. The bow is a loop of metal that is used to turn the bit and open the lock.
Transponder keys, which are often used in car locks, work a bit differently. These keys have an embedded incode or outcode that is used to program or unlock the lock. The incode is usually hidden inside the key and is used to program the lock to recognize the key and allow it to unlock it.
Finally, tubular keys, which are often used in padlocks, also work differently. These types of keys are shaped like a cylinder on the end and have pins or circles on the top and bottom of the key. When the key is inserted into the lock, the pins must be alligned in the proper order for the lock to open.
As you can see, there are many different types of keys and the way they work is quite fascinating. Whether you need a standard key, tubular key, warded key, or transponder key, it is clear that they all have a purpose and an important job to do.
Securing our homes is a major priority for most of us. Whether it’s a matter of protecting our belongings from potential burglars or keeping our family safe, we all want peace of mind knowing our house is secure. When it comes to locking our door, there are many different types of keys and locks. Knowing the different types of keys and how they work can help ensure that the locks on your home are performing optimally.
One of the oldest types of keys is the Skeleton Key. This type of key is made of metal and has a long shaft and a small bit at the end, which is inserted into the lock. As the name implies, these keys are “skeleton” in form, meaning they don’t contain any additional warding or security features besides the basic bit that fits into the lock’s internal mechanism. Skeleton keys can also be made to fit multiple locks, meaning you only have to carry a single key to unlock a door.
Pin tumbler keys are much more sophisticated. This type of key is distinct in that it’s made of metal and contains small pins that line up with those inside the lock. When inserting this type of key, the pins need to be aligned in the exact order within the lock or it won’t open—introducing an additional security measure. These keys are particularly popular in residential homes and come in a variety of shapes and sizes.
Transponder Keys are quickly becoming the gold standard in security. This type of key contains circuitry and a chip embedded in its “head.” When inserted and rotated within the corresponding lock, the chip “talks” to the lock and allows for the door to be opened. Transponder keys are incredibly effective in guarding against theft and also allow for remote unlocking—where doors can be opened via a key fob from a distance.
Finally, High-Security Keys are used to provide the ultimate level of protection for one’s home. These keys are made with proprietary designs and are quite complicated in their engineering. As such, unique cutting machines are needed to make these keys, and are owned by locksmiths and security companies—making it nearly impossible for burglars to replicate the key and access the lock.
As you can see, there’s a wide variety of different locks and keys used to keep homes secure. At Locksmith Columbus, we are a full-service locksmith company that offers a large selection of domestic, commercial, and automotive locksmith services including installation and repair of keyed locks. We’re committed to helping our customers select the right type of key for their needs and can provide key-cutting services to get you the perfect fit. Get in touch with us today to learn more about the different types of keys and how our services can help keep your residence and family safe.