How to Replace a Cylinder Lock Plug

What You'll Need
Cylinder removal tool
New cylinder

If you have lost your keys or have problems with security you may replace a cylinder lock plug without having to buy a new lock. A lock that is not operating correctly is quite frustrating not to mention dangerous. The cylinder plug on a modern lock can be easily replaced. After installing a new cylinder plug you will be secure in the knowledge that you have new keys without having to employ the services of an expensive locksmith.

Step 1 – Remove the Lockset

Take the lockset off the door. Remove all roses or cover plates around the doorknobs by twisting or prying them off. Remove the 2 screws that hold the knobs together with a screwdriver. These screws are usually found on the inside of the door. Taking a door knob in each hand gently pull them apart until they come away from the door. If necessary, remove the key from the lock. The cylinder plug is the part of the lock that accepts the key. This would be on the outside of the door. This is the part we will be concerned with for the purposes of this exercise.

Step 2 – Remove the Cylinder Plug

Turn the spindle in the middle of the lock using a cylinder extraction tool or a screwdriver until the base tab on the spindle lines up with the shorter 2 spindles appearing on either side. The cylinder removal tool may be obtained from a hardware shop or it may even be supplied with the newly purchased cylinder. Insert a screwdriver or the tool below the plate at the bottom of the spindle. Press down on the plate loosening the spindle and allowing it to slide out of place. Place the cylinder removal tools forked end into the groove where the spindle has just been removed from. Firmly push the tool in, releasing the cylinder. Once it has been released, the cylinder will automatically slide out of the housing.

Step 3 – Fit the New Cylinder

Purchase a new cylinder from any quality home improvement outlet using the old cylinder as a sample. The personnel in the security department dealing with locks and keys should be able to assist in finding a match. Take the new cylinder out of its package and line it up with the opening in the lock assembly. If you have purchased the correct replacement cylinder, it will only fit one way into the opening. Push the cylinder completely into the opening. The manufacturers logo should appear the right way up above the keyhole and not below it. Give the cylinder a firm push until you hear it click into place. Replace the lockset in the door. Push both sides of the lock together until a click is heard. Replace the two retaining screws on the inside of the door then replace any roses or cover plates back around the door knob.