WHEN SHOULD YOU REPLACE YOUR LOCKS?

There are times when things will go wrong with locks and keys. Despite the fact that a superior locksmith in Fort Lauderdale will be available even if it’s after hours, it’s still better to be pro-active instead, so that you will prevent the possibility of most mishaps.

Protecting your home is obviously very important. We all want our place of residence to be a sanctuary, a safe space where you will always feel secure and comfortable. Accordingly, it’s essential to keep all your locks in tiptop condition. Make sure that your front-door locks ~ and any other outdoor locks ~ are always functioning properly, with excellent durability. You’ll keep your loved ones and valuables well guarded when your locks are tough and resilient.

Important Points to Consider 

Rusty Locks

You and your family go in and out the door so many times every day, all day long. As time goes by, locks eventually get worn-out or even rusted, which means they will break easily. If you see any signs of rust, you’ll notice that you’re encountering difficulties placing the key into the lock mechanism, or maybe you can’t even turn the key at all. If this happens, replace the lock. 

A New Home

If you move into a new home, you must replace the locks right away. Since you never know who may still be in possession of an old key to your place, it’s critical that you get your locks changed.

New Roommates or New Tenants

If you rent out space in your apartment or house, or if you have any rental properties, the same rule applies. You must absolutely replace the locks, every time you change occupants. Even if the last residents returned their keys, you cannot be totally certain that they didn’t keep spare copies. If a break-in ever were to happen, you don’t want to have any doubts about former tenants. Keep your property effectively fortified when you have the most reputable and durable locks. 

Deadbolts

If you feel susceptible to an intruder for any reason, and you desire to enhance your home’s security, any locksmith professional worth their salt will advise you to install deadbolts.

Normal Wear and Tear

Worn-out or rusted locks are a major weakness in your security. They get increasingly difficult to open as time passes. Old or rusted locks are easier for an expert criminal to pick and break. If a lock has bad tarnish, rust, or if you notice any other signs of wear, it’s likely time to replace it. If your lock is growing more difficult to open with your key day by day, particularly in cold weather, then you ought to replace it. 

Combination Locks

Do you often lose your keys? Then you may want to think about replacing your regular lock with a combination lock. A combination door lock can be opened using a code number you choose. If the combination input ever malfunctions, or if you ever forget or misplace your code, don’t despair, because most combination locks also have a keyed lock. Change the combination if you ever think that its access may have been compromised, just as you would replace a standard lock if you lost your keys.

Lost Keys

It may take you awhile to admit it, but if you know that your keys are really lost for good, then you need to change your locks as soon as possible. All your exterior locks, which could allow an intruder access, should be replaced. After your outdoor locks are completely secured, then replace any inner locks in the order of your personal security preferences. 

Stuck Keys

Your key can actually get stuck, or even break off, inside a lock mechanism. If there is any issue with an internal lock mechanism, a key will not slide into the lock as effortlessly as it should. If there is any resistance when you turn your key, take it as a sign: It is time to replace the lock. 

Damaged Locks

If your locks are tampered with, vandalized, or otherwise damaged, then it is time to get new locks. Don’t take risks with your security! Replace your locks now. Don’t keep a damaged lock for any significant amount of time, because it will make you vulnerable to additional problems, and make it easier for a robber to get in. 

Break-ins

If the worst happens, and you are burglarized, it’s imperative that you immediately replace your locks. The force involved in the process of a break-in will compromise the lock mechanism’s integrity. A damaged lock will also put you at a greater risk of another theft. What’s more, mechanical failure could easily leave you locked out. You never know if your keys may have fallen into the wrong hands. So replace all your locks as soon as you can. 

Peace of Mind

Your locks do not necessarily have to show visible signs of damage for you to have to replace your locks. Over time, you may forget how many friends, family members, and neighbors have been given spare copies of your keys. Therefore, to expand your level of security, it’s a good idea to replace the locks periodically to maintain your home. You’ll thus have peace of mind, knowing that you are keeping your possessions and loved ones extra safe. 

Going Digital

Do you want to go high-tech? Replace all the conventional locks with digital door locks. This is an ideal way to secure your home, without needing keys at all. Keyless locks have opened new horizons in home security technology. They function with smart devices or remotes; alarm systems with remote codes; keypads; biometrics; and so on. As soon as you get accustomed to it, keyless locks are fairly easy to use. Most include an attractive selection of features that provide additional safety and convenience.

If you’re located any place in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and you need to track down a trusty professional Fort Lauderdale locksmith, you may want to think about hiring a mobile expert locksmith on staff at Optimal Locksmith Pro.

Optimal Locksmith Pro: Common Transponder Key Problems

Since 1995, vehicles are required by law to have an immobilizer system. Part of this includes a computerized security mechanism which can only be activated using a transponder key.

Emergency Locksmith

A combination between the words transmitter and responder, a transponder key relies on a small microchip embedded in its plastic head. Don’t confuse these with automotive remotes, though: the keys have many more functions. Auto remotes, by definition, only serve to open and close the door, whereas your transponder chip is supposed to operate the entire vehicle. As a matter of fact, many transponder key models are actually fitted with auto remotes themselves.

While we’re on the subject of keys, it’s also important to remember that not all keys are transponder. Flat metal keys operate solely through the mechanical cuts, and are recommended alongside your transponder as well (it’s always a good idea to have a spare key for your vehicle in case your primary one malfunctions).

But how do transponder or chip keys work? Basically, the chip fitted into the head of the key emits a special radio frequency that matches a pre-programmed ignition code. The door will only open, and the car will only power on, if it receives the right signal from the key – meaning that it is very difficult to break into a car with this type of mechanism in place.

Needless to say, these types of keys offer an invaluable amount of security. With that said, there is always the off chance you may face an occasional glitch. So here are a few problems to look out for, and what to do in each situation.

  • You have a dead or dying battery

This is by far the most common transponder key problem around. Not all transponder keys are operated by microchips and batteries – but if yours is, read on.

Initially, identifying if your issues are the results of a flat battery can be tricky. If you need to press a button multiple times to get the door to work, you could be dealing with either a dying battery or a programming glitch. The best way to figure out which is the most likely culprit is to use an alternative key – if that works, the problem is definitely with the battery.

  • If you’ve lost your transponder key

As much as we try to take care of our valuables, there’s always a chance that things will get lost. Especially when it comes to small components like keys, which can easily fall out of your pocket, or even get misplaced while you were going about your day. Remember what we said earlier about having a spare key on your person? That tends to help in this scenario. A locksmith will have all the specialist equipment to duplicate it for you, so you won’t need to fork out an extensive amount of cash getting one from your dealership. If you don’t have an extra copy and you need to replace your transponder key, a locksmith can do that as well.

What you’ll need in this case is your car’s chassis number, which should be listed in your car’s registration documents, and the transponder chip code which would have been given to you upon purchase. If you don’t have the latter, the automotive locksmith you have hired will need to reprogram either the vehicle’s transponder system or just the ECU unit (in some cases, only the latter is required).

  • Your key is no longer transmitting the right signal

Like we said, a car with a transponder system won’t work unless it receives the right transmission. So for this scenario, you will need to reprogram your key to match the car’s code (in some cases you may need to reprogram the car’s system itself, like in the point above). If you can still access your car, quickly rev your engine on and off eight times in less than ten seconds – this should prompt the car to reprogram the key for you. No luck? You’ll need to get the pros to reprogram it for you.

  • The chip has been damaged

If replacing the battery and reprogramming the transponder show no improvements, you are likely dealing with a damaged chip. In this situation, you may actually need to buy a new transponder key. While locksmiths tend to be the cheaper alternative, this is one of those situations where you should consider going to the dealership itself – that way, you will be able to deactivate the old key so that nobody can access your car. This is a matter of preference, though: a locksmith will help you in this area too.

How can a locksmith help with my transponder key problems?

We’ve already touched on many of the services you can get from a qualified auto locksmith professional. Not only will they provide you with affordable solutions, but they can also help you 24/7 during emergencies. Just to be on the safe side, it’s always best to keep a few locksmith business names handy before you need to call them for an automotive emergency – be it with a transponder key or with any other part of your car’s security.

You should always hire a locksmith that is locally-based, and who has an address you can physically verify. It’s always recommended that you consult with an expert in person: this is a service most professionals offer to their customers free of charge. Things you should always double check include:

  • License and insurance information
  • Client references in the area
  • Full cost breakdown of the services you are looking for
  • A price quote for after-hours services (most locksmiths tend to charge extra for these)

Take the time to shop around and don’t hire a Fort Lauderdale locksmith who pressures you into making a hasty decision.

Optimal Locksmith Pro is always here to help car owners in Fort Lauderdale, FL. We specialize in all things transponder as well as offering an array of automotive services. Our licensed and insured professionals are more than happy to consult with you about your issues, and will gladly answer all questions you may have prior to taking our services on board.

Now you know a bit more about your transponder keys, you will be able to make a wise decision when it comes to resolving some of the most common issues.

15 Reasons to Get A Surveillance System for Your Business

You’re able to protect your business with the right type of security. It doesn’t matter if your business is big or small, security is a necessity if you want to be sure your investment pays off. One of the most widely used types of security involves the installation of a surveillance system. With a basic surveillance system, the activity in or around your business is caught on camera. With more advanced surveillance systems, they offer more than the basic surveillance system. It may be worth your while to exam these additional feature if you’re considering a surveillance system.

Access Control

With a more advanced system, you will save time and money overall. In addition to saving you time and money, there are a ton of advantages that are available to you. We have listed 15 of them right here:

Advantages of a Video Surveillance System

  1. Improvement in Work Production

When your employees know that there are cameras installed, they are less likely to waste time while on the clock. Departments are also capable of communicating more effectively if they know what is happening in another part of the building.

  1. Improved Safety and Security

When the surveillance cameras are installed in the right places within your business, it helps to deter theft and can break-ins. People are simply less reluctant to take chances for fear of being caught in the act.

  1. Better Employee Relations

This can help cut down on disagreements. If employees are expected to be somewhere at a specific time, the camera will be able to let you know if they were where they were supposed to be and not somewhere else.

  1. No False Claims

If a visitor or employee try’s to make a claim that they were injured while on your premises, there is a camera that can serve as proof. The footage captured will let you know if their claim is true or not.

  1. Real-time Monitoring

Specific areas of your business can be monitored. The best part is that they can be monitored from your computer or even your cell phone, in real-time.

  1. Digital Storage

With an IP-based video system, business owners also receive digital storage. Video foot con be stored digitally on the company’s very own servers or hard-drives. This makes footage accessible to others when needed. Resolution of certain matters is handled more effectively and quickly with video footage.

  1. Prevent Theft

In some instances it is most helpful to have visible video cameras present to prevent break-ins.

  1. Improved Reputation

When you have video surveillance cameras installed, it provides your customers with an improved image of your business. It also sends the message that you care about your business and your customers. Employees also feel more comfortable.

  1. Security and Safety

With cameras, it gives business owners peace-of-mind in knowing there employees are safe and that sensitive information is secure. Bad behavior is minimized along with violence and vandalism. If this type of behavior displayed, the situation can be handled quickly because of the evidence of misconduct caught on video.

  1. Monitor Visitors

People sometimes confuse what control access offers. While some controlled-access systems are offered with a surveillance system, not all of them have this capability. If yours doesn’t offer this features, you might want to consider investing. Despite having access control, you can also physically see who has been in and out of your business at any particular time. If someone happens to leave without signing out, at least you have a picture of them, which can be seen on camera.

  1. Crowd Control

If your business receives a lot of foot traffic, having a surveillance camera installed is a good idea. When a camera is visible, people are less likely to get out-of-control and incidents are minimized. If someone does happen to get out of control, the footage will let you know exactly who it was.

  1. Visual Proof

If there is ever any criminal activity at your business, it can all be nipped in the bud by having a surveillance camera installed. You’ll have evidence that there is something taking place at work that shouldn’t be.

  1. Remote Property Monitoring

Now this affords users another level of security. When you have a camera installed, you can monitor it from your laptop or your cell phone. This means that you can pull out your phone or your laptop, wherever you are to see what is happening at your business. When you have an IP system, the footage can be played back and watched at any time that you like. More than one type of video monitoring is available to businesses.

  1. Secure Exiting and Entering

When there are a lot of people exiting or entering one location at the same time, it can become a volatile situation. With video surveillance installed in the entryways, it can help monitor the situation and alert your security to the potential for a bad situation to occur. They can thwart off a potentially dangerous situation with the help of a surveillance camera. Besides, if someone is harmed on your premises, you might be help responsible for whatever happens. You are capable of protecting yourself with the added feature of a surveillance system.

  1. Security for the Building

If you have restricted areas, they should certainly be monitored. The best way to monitor these areas is with a video surveillance camera. Breaches in security happen all the time. When you have a disgruntled employee, the last thing you want to happen is for them to come back inside and cause harm to anyone. You can remove the possibility of their gaining access again by having surveillance installed.

While some people see a surveillance system as being far too much, at Optimal Locksmith Pro in Fort Lauderdale, FL, we do not think you can ever have too much security. In most cases, people do not have enough security in place to protect themselves and others.