How to Unlock a Padlock Without a Key

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Things You'll Need

  • Push pen with side clip or hook lock picking tool (torque wrench)

  • Hair clip or small Allen key

Tip

Use a bolt cutter to cut through the top curved part of the padlock. Call a locksmith to open the padlock if you don't have the supplies to pick the lock.

Warning

Do not open padlocks that don't belong to you. Doing so is a criminal offense.

You can unlock your padlock without a key using everyday household items.

There's nothing as frustrating as losing the key to your padlock. If you need to get the lock off, you can do so with the help of some household items. Always keep a spare set of keys in a safe place or with a friend or neighbor to avoid a situation in which you have to to get a padlock off without the key.

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Step 1

Pick the lock if you have a lock-picking set or a pen and a small Allen key. Hold the lock in your left hand. Start with a round hook pick tool (torque wrench), or the metal pocket clip from a push pen.

Step 2

Remove the pocket clip from the pen. Insert the round hook end of the pocket clip or lock picking tool (torque wrench) into the wide side of the slit where you would insert the key. Only insert the hook part. Rotate the clip or tool in an clockwise direction until it will no longer move. Hold it in place with the thumb of your left hand.

Step 3

Make a bend in the bottom half of the hair clip (about 1 inch from the bottom) or use a small Allen key. Insert the key or clip up to the bend. Rotate the clip or key in a clockwise direction until the lock clicks open.

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references & resources

Nicole Fotheringham

Nicole Fotheringham has been a writer since 1997. She was born in South Africa and began as a reporter for the "Natal Mercury" and "Cape Argus" newspapers. Fotheringham has a master's degree in English literature from the University of KwaZulu-Natal.