How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask David L. Your Own Question
David L.
David L., Handyman
Category: Home Improvement
Satisfied Customers: 140
Experience:  22 Years experience. Have taught nearly every project to homeowners in the past as well as having done them myself.
Type Your Home Improvement Question Here...
David L. is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I am trying to remove a keyed Kwikset deadbolt lock. There

Customer Question

I am trying to remove a keyed Kwikset deadbolt lock. There are key holes on both sides, no latch. I have removed the two interior screws from the inner plate, but cannot remove the cover or pull out the cylinder. I have pryed with a variety of tools and all I am doing is damaging the wood door. Both sides of the lock will spin, so it is not a paint/ stuck on finish problem. I have also tried pulling off the outside cylinder to no avail. Any suggestions would be appreciated.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Home Improvement
Expert:  David L. replied 6 years ago.

David L. :

Hello! I believe that people can fix nearly ANYTHING themselves with a little guidance! I'll help you, and you will pay only if you are satisfied. I sold this brand for years. Let's get started.

David L. :

Is the bolt still in the door, or has it been removed?

David L. :

Looks like you are not online.

David L. :

I'll wait a while.

David L. :

I'll wait a little longer.

David L. :

Are you there?

Expert:  David L. replied 6 years ago.

Hello, since you were not online, I will email you instructions here.


I sold and serviced kwikset locks, and their competitors, for many years. The kwikset locks are relatively simple, and are easy, usually, to service.


There are several types of deadbolts, with different mounting types. I will assume that yours is old, and go from there. If you bought it in the last 8 years, let me know.


There should be a total of 4 screws visible on a double deadbolt. Two on the bolt latch area, and two near the keyway where the key goes in. Remove all 4. Wiggle the bolt back and forth to loosen any corrosion that might be sticking the "blade" to the bolt. The blade is the piece that connects the inside and outside keyways.


Do you have the keys? If so, unlock the deadbolt prior to trying to remove it.


Are the screws that you removed from the keyway area long enough to go all the way through the door? Say 3" long? If yes, then the two halves are stuck there either by adhesive or by varnish sticking to the lock housing under the cover. It might be that whoever installed it glued it together, but this would be rare. What I do in this instance is to get a screw with the same threads as the old screws, insert it and tighten a bit, leaving it a little sticking out...not all the way tight. Then I use a metal rod, or a philips screwdriver that I do not care about too much, and line it up straight on the head of the screw. Then I strike it wit a hammer. The other side of the bolt should move away from the door the same distance that the screw was left loose. Then remove the screw, and then remove the deadbolt, as it will be free of the door now.


I should say that kwikset has produced several types of deadbolts, some with covers on the inside that remove by putting the end of a flat bladed screwdriver under the slot in the cover. If you see no slots cut out of the cover, then this would not be the case for you.


There are many other brands as well that use kwikset style keys, which are not kwikset locks. All of these attach differently. For example, Harlock has a small slot in the cover with a button inside that releases the cover, revealing screws inside that need to be removed to take off the lock. Before using the procedure above look for a small slot or cutout in the cover of the inside and outside locks, and if you find one, even if it is small, try pressing in the slot or hole with the blade of a small flat screwdriver to see if the cover comes off.


Sometimes well meaning installers seal the hole with caulk, and that may be your issue here. Prior to doing the hammer procedure above, if you can fit it, use a thin blade and force it between the lock and the wood of the door. If it was caulked, that will cut the sealant, freeing the lock from the door. Careful not to cut yourself, and the blades can break, so do not overstrain and slip if the blade breaks.


Let me know how this works for you, and good luck!


Please weigh if I helped you enough to warrant positive feedback, and if yes, please click on "accept" so that the site will compensate me. You can leave a bonus if you want to as well, and please leave feedback for me. You may still ask more questions either before or after clicking "accept". Thank you!


Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Thanks for the response. I finally called Kwikset and they told me that the answer was that the interior face plate has an inner cover behind the two screws. Once the screws are off, you pop off the little face plate and remove two more screws. I assume this is what you meant in your third paragraph....thanks again
Expert:  David L. replied 6 years ago.
Yes, on the newer locks there is the second faceplate. Glad you found it. Have a great day!