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Lock and Key types

Locks and keys come in many sizes, forms and shapes. Their functions can range from basic to high tech and everything in between. Here at Locksmith Riverview, our skilled technicians handle locks and locking mechanisms for home, auto, work place and business so we pretty much have seen what’s “out there” and the variety is staggering. Since all locks are definitely not the same, it’s best to know about their basic differences and purposes so that you can make the right choices in applying locks and keys to your daily life for enhanced security and protection.

Since days of old

Locks and keys have been with us for thousands of years. Temples, tombs, treasure chambers, homes and palaces have all been guarded by locks and keys in one form or another since the dawn of man. This was and is for a reason; they work! Look around you in today’s world – locks and keys are literally everywhere we look. Cars, homes, offices, stores, schools, government facilities, recreation centers, museums, hotels and even funeral homes are guarded and protected by locks of one kind or another. You can find an array of locks here in Riverview, FL just as you can in Venice, Italy. Locks and keys will always be with us but their usefulness is only as good as their quality and the knowledge of how to buy, install and use them.

Use the right lock

Locks are not built to be the same. For example look at the locking mechanism guarding the vault at your bank. Now, compare that with the lock securing your daughter’s diary. Not quite the same is it? This is because locks and keys have different levels of protection offered. Padlocks are lightweight, portable and provide medium security for lockers, bicycles, storage rooms and sheds. You wouldn’t padlock your car door or the entrance to your dry cleaner’s – you’d use a better quality locking mechanism for those. If you need any kind of lock, key, or locking device, we encourage you to do some basic research online or by calling your favorite local locksmith. Making the right choice will result in better lock security and protection no matter what you are guarding or where!


We mentioned these earlier. Padlocks have the advantage of being lightweight and very affordable. They are easy to use and they can be so versatile! That same padlock that guarded your high school locker can be used to secure your backyard shed or your rented storage room. Padlocks can be opened with a traditional key or by using a rotary dial or both. They offer medium security as they can be cut off or picked open but for the most part, they really pack the value and are worth the cost.

High Security Locks

These and bump proof locks are all the rage lately and with good reason. They are not expensive but can protect your property better than most “ordinary” locks as they can’t be picked open, bumped open, pried, smashed or even shot open! Too good to be true? Not at all! These locks rely on special solid steel construction and strengthened parts to keep burglars, thieves and crooks from bypassing them and entering your home or business. Ordinary locks can be bumped open in mere seconds by even beginner thieves. Not any more. These specialized locks can frustrate burglars to the point that they leave your property in frustration. They are definitely worth checking into!

Cam Locks

A cam or tail lock is a rounded lock with a metal flap that turns as the key does. They are typically found in desks, file cabinets, locking supply shelves and office cabinets. They offer very minimal security as they can be smashed open or picked quite easily; even with a paper clip! Their worth is found in offering the impression of security and not so much in the actual protection itself. If you have documents, cash or important papers that need real security don’t depend on cam locks! See your local locksmith for better and equally inexpensive options!

Transponder Keys

If your car is a model from 1995 on, you are using a transponder key to start and drive it. To transpond means to transmit and that’s what this key does. It transmits a radio signal to your car’s onboard computer – if that signal is recognized, your car starts. They key has a chip embedded in its head. The rest of the key consists of the usual notched blade with grooves. The chip is only needed to start the car as the rest of the key can open the trunk or unlock the car door. Transponder keys are responsible for a massive decrease in auto theft as they also stop cars from being hot-wired. Since they are expensive, they also prevent crooks from copying them and using the duplicate to steal your car.

Deadbolt Locks

Deadbolt locks are the unsung heroes of many attempted burglaries. They are simple in construction but they are worth getting, installing and using. They can be purchased in one or two cylinder models and installed quickly and easily. When properly installed and used, a good deadbolt lock will provide a second line of defense against intruders, burglars and thieves who manage to bypass your main door lock. This allows residents time to call police or even to arm themselves. In no one is home, the added time needed to pick the deadbolt also allows for video recording, alarm alerts and for possible discovery by neighbors, witnesses or law enforcement.

Biometric Locks

Biometric is another word for fingerprint locks and retina scanners. These work with no keys at all – instead your retina is scanned or your thumbprint is pressed onto a keypad. Biometric locks can be found in mobile phones, gun cabinets, commercial safes, door locks, wine cellar doors, home vaults, panic rooms and dozens of other applications. They can be backed up with key access and battery power in case of electrical outage.