Locked out! How to recognise respectable locksmith services

Have you ever locked yourself out?

Our checklist will help you find a respectable locksmith service.

Checklist for finding a respectable locksmith service

Locked out without a key

  • Stay calm and do not react rashly.
  • Is there a spare or emergency key somewhere? E.g. acquaintances, relatives, roommates, building manager.
  • Is there any other way to get into your private premises?

Finding a respectable locksmith service

  • Many dormakaba partners offer locksmith services. Here you will find a dormakaba partner near you.
  • Contact the police. Many police stations keep a list of respectable locksmith services. 
  • Look for local locksmith services on the internet.
    • Caution: the top search results are not necessarily locksmith services near you. 
    • Taking a look at the provider’s about us section will usually tell you where the firm is located.
    • Look for reviews of the locksmith service on the internet. This can be very revealing.
  • Respectable locksmith services generally do not use 0800 or 0900 telephone numbers.
  • Be sceptical if the provider does not speak the local language on the phone. 
  • Ask for the exact name of the company on the phone.
    • Dubious locksmith services usually tell you merely “contractor service”, “locksmith service” etc. 
  • Look for a price list on the provider’s website.
  • Price
    • Every respectable locksmith service will inform you on the phone of the costs you can expect. 
    • Even though prices will vary, you should question conspicuously high rates. 
    • There are surcharges for service calls outside of office hours. 

The locksmith service at your location

  • A respectable locksmith will ask you for identification. 
  • Be sceptical if the locksmith wants to drill out your lock immediately. This is not necessary in most cases and will cause additional charges. 
  • Do not pay on site, but ask for an invoice.

After using the locksmith’s service

  • Report the loss of the key to your landlord or the police. That way, the safety of the building can be maintained. 
  • You can ask for an itemised invoice for the service.

Weiterführende Links

Warning issued by St. Gallen cantonal police about dubious locksmith services 

Beobachter - Tipps zu Schlüsseldiensten (Look out! Tips on locksmith services)

Sendung SRF Kassensturz Espresso «Ausgesperrt! – So gehen Sie richtig vor» (TV programme “Locked out! What to do next”)

Sendung SRF Kassensturz «Schlüsseldienst: Deutsche Bande nimmt Schweizer Kunden aus» (TV programme “Locksmith service: German gang fleeces Swiss customers”)