When the key is placed inside and the lock is operated, great friction occurs. As a result, over time the device can become sticky and freeze up eventually. In this case, lock repair or replacement may be required. The good news is that this problem can be effectively prevented with proper lubrication. Follow the steps outlined below to keep the device in optimal working condition at all times.
The choice of product is extremely important for getting good results while keeping the door lockset and the key perfectly safe. You have to take into consideration a number of important factors.
Check what the lock manufacturer recommends first - You should be able to find the information on the box of the device and/or in any accompanying leaflets and manuals. The website of the manufacturer is also good place for obtaining the details which you need. If the company says that a particular lubricant should be used, you have to adhere to their instructions so as not to breach the warranty.
Consider a dry lubricant with good weather-resistance - Unless the manufacturer states otherwise, a graphite-based product should do an excellent job. It is not sticky and will not leave any residue. It will do a good job even if the temperature drops considerably.
As long as you apply the product correctly, you will get top results.
Spray the lubricant directly into the keyhole - Shake the can well first just in case. You need to spray only a small amount. You must stop when it starts coming back out. Remember to add lubricant to both sides for the perfect lock fix.
Wipe the outside of the device clean - This is only needed in case there is residue left. You should use soft lint-free cloth to prevent scratching of the metal.
Apply graphite to the key and then insert it and turn it a few times - Simply use a pencil to cover the part of the key which goes into the device with graphite. Make sure that you cover all surfaces. The turning of the key will ensure that the lubricant gets properly spread. When the friction is reduced, you will not have to worry about frequent key change either.
Finally, you should provide lubrication semiannually or at least annually to prevent the lockset from sticking and to avoid key issues as well. Make sure that the lubricant is kept in a cool and dry place for best results. With proper care, you will not have to worry about lock replacement in the near future.