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Can a Locksmith Open a Gun Safe? | What You Need To Know

Losing the key (or combination) to your gun safe can be a frustrating experience. Although your guns are still safe, now you can no longer access them. You may sit there trying random numbers or wondering if you can break into it again, but it’s probably a good idea to contact a professional locksmith to see if they can help.

A qualified locksmith can open a gun safe in most scenarios. Even in cases where the internal mechanisms or electronics are damaged, locksmiths are trained to gain access without damaging the contents.

This article will explain some situations where a locksmith can help gain access to a gun safe, details about copying keys for gun safes, and choosing a good locksmith. Keep reading to learn the options you have at your disposal.

A Locksmith Can Help You Open a Gun Safe

Locksmith in an Apron in a Hardware Store

According to ACME Locksmith, in most situations where you’ve lost access to your gun safe, a qualified professional locksmith can help. They’re trained to deal with a wide range of cases in which a safe has become inaccessible.

Before calling a locksmith, you must identify the locking mechanism and the exact reason you’ve lost access to your gun safe. It could be as simple as losing the keys or the combination. However, in some situations, the internal mechanisms or electronics may be damaged.

Safe Lock Identification

Identifying the type of lock will let the locksmith know what they’re dealing with. Doing this allows the locksmith to give you accurate price quotes and prepares them for opening the safe safely and properly.

According to Hoogerhyde Safe & Lock, you can do several things to identify the exact locking mechanism on your safe. The specific process will depend on the type of safe you have:

  • For combination locks, you can try looking for identifying marks on the dial of the lock.
  • Check to see if there’s a manufacturer name and model number somewhere on the safe door.
  • For safes made within the last 40 years, any serial numbers on the safe might help identify the lock.
  • The details of the dialing procedure can help a locksmith identify the exact mechanism.

Direct entry locks are less secure than other types of locks. Several ways for you to tell if your safe has a direct entry lock:

  • You most likely have a direct entry lock if you can feel the dial turning through the handle.
  • It’s probably a direct entry lock if the safe only has a dial and no secondary handle.

Older safe models (made more than 40 years ago) will be more challenging to identify than safes with newer locking mechanisms. In this case, a locksmith can probably still be of service. It’s always essential to get as much information as possible about the lock to help the locksmith gain access for you.

How To Choose a Locksmith?

If you need a locksmith to help you gain access to your gun safe, then you should put in some effort to make sure you get a good one. Many locksmiths or intermediaries will overcharge for their services, so it’s crucial to know what you’re paying for.

In addition, more complex locks will require more expensive equipment and processes to open. So, if you’re trying to access a high-end safe, make sure you get a qualified locksmith that can help you without damaging the safe or its contents unnecessarily.

You can choose a locksmith by getting recommendations from friends and family. Another way is to explore your local area to find the best-certified locksmith around. Social media is also a good place to start your search.

According to Great Valley Lockshop, when selecting a locksmith, there are a few simple steps you can take to ensure you’re receiving professional and reasonably priced services as follows:

  1. Clarify the exact locksmithing services you require.
  2. Look through locksmithing services in your area.
  3. Confirm whether or not your homeowner’s insurance covers locksmithing services.
  4. Call and get a cost estimate for the service.
  5. Always confirm any certifications or qualifications your chosen locksmith may have.
  6. Confirm any necessary paperwork with the locksmith when on-site. This includes any price quotes, certificates of qualification, and authorization forms for the job.

If you follow the above steps, you should have no problem finding a good locksmith to help you access your gun safe. Several factors can be red flags when selecting a locksmith:

  • Suspiciously low prices
  • No specified business address
  • No specified service area or huge service area
  • No certifications
  • No estimate or inaccurate estimate
  • Bad online reviews

Can a Locksmith Rekey a Gun Safe?

An Open Gun Safe

Once you’ve selected a locksmith and gained access to your safe, you’ll probably want to obtain a new key or combination for the safe

A locksmith generally can rekey a gun safe, except in cases where the safe or the locking mechanism has been significantly damaged. There are several ways that your locksmith can help rekey your safe, like creating a key copy for the lock or using trial keys.

The following discusses further how a locksmith can help you rekey your gun safe:

  • Make an impression. This process allows professional locksmiths to create a key copy from the lock without requiring the key.
  • Use trial keys. Trial keys are keys cut with standard configurations to gain access to lower-security locks.
  • Make a new key from the codes on the lock. Some lock manufacturers leave key codes on their locks that can help a locksmith make a new key for that lock.
  • Copy keys from a picture of them before they were lost. If you have a close-up photo of the keys before you lose them, a good locksmith can cut a new key based on those pictures.
  • Obtain a new key from the manufacturer. In some cases, you may be able to receive a replacement key from the safe manufacturer.

Can Safe Keys Be Copied?

Safe keys can be copied. A qualified locksmith should be able to copy any unique safe key you need. More complex keys will be more expensive to copy, so make sure to evaluate the security of your safe before hiring a locksmith to copy the key.


If you ever lose access to your gun safe, don’t worry because you can always rely on a professional locksmith to help you open your gun safe. Even if the internal mechanisms or electronics are damaged, a good locksmith will be able to access the gun safe without damaging the contents.

For more, check out How to Safely Store a Gun for Home Defense | Best Practices.