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Everything You Need to Know About Mortise Locks

Azmin Taraporewala
Looking out for information on mortise locks? We have some vital data on mortise lock parts, its repair and replacement procedures, and the advantages of installing the same. Read on and key in, to unlock the details.
Mortise lock is a very sophisticated type of lock consisting of the handle and a lock set. A mortise lock cannot be installed onto the door right away. The installation is possible only when the lock-set is carefully cut into respective panels. It needs to be cut in such a manner, that the parts fit into the panel and match the panel space.
In the archaic times,these locks were found only in old buildings. Cylindrical locks garnered more attention and were considered popular. One of the primary reasons why they were not preferred was the exquisite forte of carpentry, that the installation demanded.
In the recent times, when safety and security are the predominant concerns, mortise locks have become indispensable. Contemporary and commercial residential associations and business hubs, are resorting to mortise lock installations to rev up security measures. Sargent, Baldwin and Yale are some popular brands associated with mortise locking system.

Parts of a Mortise Lock

A mortise lock-set consists of a number of parts. The lock body is the part that you install into the panel, the strike plate, which is also called the box keep and the lock trim.
lock trim is the door knob, the lever or the handle. The strike plate is responsible for the alignment of the lock. When the door is locked, the bolt slides into the hole provided in the frame of the lock body. 
The keyed cylinder is the most important part of the lock system. The keyed cylinder is entirely credited for the locking and unlocking technical controls. It is a metal plate that is attached to the frame. It is visible when the door is opened.

Repair and Replacement

Mortise locks rank high on providing safety and security. Thus, it becomes mandatory for an individual to repair, or replace the lock system without any delay. Security is a priority in today's day and age and such home security systems prove to be of great help in preventing theft.
● One needs to understand, that the lock controls are damaged, when the key inserted into the keyhole turns, but the lock bolt does not function. The lock system either needs a repair or a replacement.
● Its repair would require you to remove the keyed cylinder. With the help of a screwdriver, remove the deadbolt of the handle or the lever. For this, the setscrew needs to be loosened. Moving on to the strike plate or the face plate of the knob handle; you need to steadily unscrew the setscrew of the lock.
● If you have any troubles with the rest of the system, you could remove the interior lock - the lever. The face plate and the strike plate could be withdrawn by unscrewing them.
● To replace it, remove the interior lock, the handle or the lever and uninstall the face plate and the strike plate by removing the screws. Also, pay attention to the installation tips and suggestions that are accompanied with the new lock unit.
● If you insert the key into the lock, and the bolt knob operates, but with a lot of toil and trouble, it is a clear signal indicating the need for lubrication.
● Lubricating with graphite powder or a silicone spray is a great way to ensure smooth functioning of the key bolt knob. Add the powder or the spray into the keyhole and you are sure to find a marked difference in the functioning.
● You may find that it may sometimes be too large. To fix this, install the strike plate with wood putty, on the excess mortise parts for the time being. When the wood putty is dry, scrub off the roughness and the irregularities found on the surface to make it smooth and bump free. Apply some varnish or paint to provide the mortise lock a good finish.
These were some of the ways in which the mortise lock could encounter problems and you could solve them using these tips and suggestions.


The mortise lock lends an archaic feel to your door. It looks sturdy and exudes a class of its own. You don't need to worry about the texture and the style your lock carries.
Antique locks could be the perfect pick for your door, if you are looking out to give your doorway, a dramatically ancient look. Antique brass, satin nickel and polished chrome are some of the textures that you could install to make your house and belongings secure! Here are some advantages that you garner, if and when you plan to install a mortise lock.
● It is available in varied sizes. If however, you are thinking of replacing the locking system, you must make sure to lay your hands on a mortise lock of the same size, or else you may have to drill new holes in the door frame, if your new system is even a tad larger in size.
● They are specifically designed to fit the requirements of a children's room or washroom. It may be possible that one is locked inside accidentally and cannot manage his/her way out.
In such situations, a mortise lock serves the purpose, as it has a mechanism called the 'passage function'. This enables the individual to have an access to the room without locking the door. Thus, the door can be shut, however cannot be locked.
● A mortise lock works on the dual locking system. Mortise locks can be latched from the insides, as well as the outsides. This provides the much-required security even when you are out to strike a business deal or are plan to have a ball with your family while on a vacation.
It is a useful parameter in this epoch where burglaries and thefts are preponderantly prevalent. Gone are the days when art, literature, poetry and the beauty of nature were discussed and appreciated. Cases of theft, murder and abduction are topics that have captured the family get-together discussions today. What a day, what an age we are met with . . . .