A locksmith is an expert in doors, keys and entryways. Duties may include tasks such as replacing doorknob kits, installing doors, screens, or windows, changing locks, and setting up accessibility. Locksmiths they work on more than just houses; they may be working with keys on a car, filing cabinets, fire safes, security gates or anything else that requires physical access.
Locksmiths need to use a wide variety of tools and often carry tools with them; they also need to know how to use both small and large machinery such as drills and key cutters. Required skills include detailed record-keeping skills for inventory, warranty, and security records and basic math. Skills such as problem solving and site analysis are commonly used by experts in selecting the right type of lock for the job.
Many modern Locksmiths may specialize in electronic locksmith technology, such as security systems, key card entry systems, and transponder vehicle keys. Other specialties exist, as well, such as bank safe specialization or forensic locksmiths who can help detectives figure out who accessed things and when.
More experienced locksmiths, often called master locksmiths, may be involved in setting up security procedures and business processes related to who can have access to what within a company. A large percentage of locksmiths work for themselves as independent contractors or small business owners. Because of the wide security access locksmiths can have, most states require locksmiths to be licensed. Locksmiths do have a professional organization: the Associated Locksmiths of America (AOLA), which can help with trainings and state-specific licensing.
- Maintain equipment, including master keys, inventory, parts, warrantees, and records.
- Analyze site to identify security measures for doors, windows, and other points of access.
- Select, install, and update locks and related hardware.
- Disassemble, repair, and troubleshoot problems with locks.