How to Open a Locked Door with a Screwdriver

Open a Locked Door with a Screwdriver

Call Us

Getting locked out of a room or your house is a situation many of us have faced at least once. It’s frustrating and can often happen at the most inconvenient times. However, before you consider breaking a window or calling a locksmith, you might want to try opening the lock yourself using a tool as simple as a screwdriver. At NonStop Locksmith in Kansas City, we understand the urgency and annoyance of lockouts. That’s why we’re here to guide you through the process of opening a locked door with a screwdriver, providing you with a DIY solution that could save time and money.

Understanding the Lock Mechanism

Before diving into the steps, it’s crucial to understand the type of lock you’re dealing with. Most interior doors use a simple push-button or twist-knob lock, which are relatively easy to unlock. Exterior doors might have a deadbolt or a more complex locking mechanism, which can be more challenging but not impossible to open with the right techniques and tools.

Tools You Will Need

  • Flat-head screwdriver
  • Phillips-head screwdriver
  • Tension wrench (optional)
  • Lock picking set (optional for more complex locks)

Step-by-Step Guide to Opening a Locked Door

Simple Push-button Locks

  1. Insert the Flat-head Screwdriver: Locate the small hole on the doorknob. Gently insert the tip of a flat-head screwdriver into the hole.
  2. Find the Release Mechanism: Feel around with the screwdriver until you touch the release mechanism.
  3. Push and Twist: Once you’ve found the release, push it with the screwdriver and twist. The door should unlock.

Twist-knob Locks

  1. Insert the Screwdriver: Use a thin flat-head screwdriver and insert it into the keyhole.
  2. Twist the Lock: Apply gentle pressure and twist the screwdriver. If aligned correctly with the internal mechanism, the lock will disengage.

Deadbolts and Complex Locks

  1. Tension Wrench: Insert the tension wrench into the bottom part of the keyhole.
  2. Rake the Lock: Use a raking tool from your lock picking set to gently rake the pins inside the lock while applying slight tension with the wrench.
  3. Turn the Tension Wrench: Once the pins are set, turn the tension wrench as if it were the key. The lock should open.

Techniques for Opening Locked Doors with a Screwdriver

Technique Tool Needed Steps Lock Type
Push-button Release Flat-head Screwdriver 1. Insert screwdriver into hole<br>2. Find release mechanism<br>3. Push and twist to unlock Simple push-button locks
Twist-knob Unlocking Flat-head Screwdriver 1. Insert screwdriver into keyhole<br>2. Apply pressure and twist to unlock Twist-knob locks
Deadbolt Unlocking Tension Wrench and Rake Tool 1. Insert tension wrench<br>2. Rake pins while applying tension<br>3. Turn wrench to unlock Deadbolts and complex locks

This table provides a straightforward guide for various types of locks you might encounter.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I unlock any door with a screwdriver?

While many simple locks can be unlocked with a screwdriver, more complex locks, like high-security deadbolts, may require professional locksmith tools and skills.

Is it legal to pick my own lock?

Yes, it’s legal to pick your own lock if you’re unlocking your property. However, ensure you’re not violating any local laws or regulations.

What if the screwdriver method doesn’t work?

If these methods don’t work, it might be time to call a professional locksmith. Trying too hard can damage the lock or door, leading to more expensive repairs.

Can I prevent lockouts in the future?

Yes, consider leaving a spare key with a trusted neighbor or friend. Additionally, NonStop Locksmith provides innovative solutions for locking and unlocking doors without traditional keys.


Opening a locked door with a screwdriver can be a simple and effective solution to a common problem. However, it’s important to approach this task with caution to avoid damage to your lock or door. Remember, not all locks are easily bypassed with DIY methods, and sometimes, the best course of action is to seek professional help.

For residents of Kansas City facing lockout situations or needing expert locksmith services, NonStop Locksmith is here to help. Whether you’re locked out of your house, need residential locksmith services, or require 24/7 emergency locksmith assistance, our team of experienced professionals is just a call away. We also offer guidance on how to open a locked bedroom door, how to child-proof door locks, and how to remove a broken key from a lock, among other useful tips.

For any locksmith needs in Kansas City, contact us at NonStop Locksmith. We’re committed to providing non-stop, top-notch service to our community, ensuring you’re never left stranded outside your home or vehicle.

Table of Contents

Latest Posts

Contact Us