A tubular lock is also known as a radial lock, barrel key, Ace lock or a circle pin tumbler lock where there are a variety of pins (between 4-10), arranged in a circular pattern with the matching key in a tubular or cylindrical shape. It became popular in 1933 by the manufacturer Chicago Lock Company, and has since been widely used with commercial products, such as computers, bicycle locks, ATM’s, glass display cabinets in stores, vending machines and elevators. They are ideal for business owners who want to secure their valuables, but also for theft and vandalism prevention, public safety and protection against unauthorised entrance to buildings and machines. Tubular locks are a smaller version of a morticed lock and are very budget friendly, making them ideal for home and door use. The tubular lock uses a basic pin tumbler system but has a few differences, with the shape of the key being circular and open in the centre, with grooves cut into the outsides of the circular shape.
What is their background?
In the 1960’s and 1970’s, tubular locks were recommended as high security locks for apartments and houses. In the 1980s, this was challenged by advancements in lock manufacturers, as well as locksmiths becoming familiar with their certain weaknesses. This led to a decline in the consumer market for tubular locks and keys. However, manufacturers such as Ace, the Van Lock company and Illinois Lock company, continued to manufacture different variations of the tubular lock concept. Today, these are still challenging to lock pickers and burglars, and therefore are used in the gambling industry for slot machines.
Tubular locks are also commonly found on doors and are most suited for new post-1950’s pre-drilled doors. They are one of the most common types of residential locks in the US and require your door to be drilled and prepared in different ways for installation. They were originally designed in order to prevent high manufacturing costs and labour-intensive preparation needed on doors. Tubular locks have an independent latch and independent deadbolt, so you can identify them though the independent face plate for each of these functions.
How do they work?
The key is circular and has a ring-shaped hole, with a metal cylinder surrounding it in the middle. The pins are pushed in horizontally to the lock; this compares to the standard pin and tumbler system where key pins are moved vertically. The notch on the key should correspond to fit the similarly shaped hole in the keyway of the door, and these will have to line up to allow insertion of the key. Once the key is fitted into the keyhole, the key pins are depressed to the correct depth.
What is their design?
The design is similar to the pin tumbler lock, the key has notches around each edge, these depress a pin inside the lock to a certain height, allowing the cylinder to turn. The key pins (red) and driver pins (blue) push towards the front of the lock, stopping the plug (yellow) from rotating round. Once the key is fitted correctly into the gaps between the key and driver pins; this will depress the key pins aligning them with the indentations and shear plane, separating the plug from its outer casing (green), and allowing the lock to turn.
Are they secure?
They are secure and good for emergencies, with a feature that allows quick access or exit in the case of an emergency. For tubular keys, this emergency mechanism is on the inside of the door, with a longer protective plate. However, they are also good for securing homes and doors, as a separate deadbolt can be added to the lock to secure the door. Tubular deadbolts have a hardened steel pin within the bolt, and this prevents people from drilling down on it. They are also available with a key in knob or lever function with or without an emergency system and can be great for storage areas or mechanical rooms where a deadbolt is not needed. They offer a high level of security and can be purchased for a good price, providing security for your home and doors.
Now that you understand the history and background of the tubular lock, and the basics of using one, you can appreciate why this lock is used widely in different industries. These locks are often considered safer and more resistant to picking than a standard lock, and therefore can be a good option for anyone who requires a higher level of security.
Period properties combine class and style with both character and history, but can prove a challenge for security, especially if you are living in a listed building with restrictions or conservation area regulations. One of the main challenges can be home security, as period and heritage properties often have outdated security systems, making them easy targets for criminals. Modern security solutions can be introduced to increase the security of your traditional property and these are worth the investment. It is also possible to install security measures that work with the aesthetics of your property and its setting, without disrupting its visual appeal.
Period properties have older windows such as wooden-frame sash instead of the lockable, double glazed uPVC windows that modern houses often have. You should consider looking at specialist sash-window locks as these will provide higher levels of home security. However, these might be subject to restrictions so you should always check with your local council’s conservation officer first before making any changes. You could also consider installing collapsible grilles for the insides of your windows; these may disrupt the period aesthetics but they do fold away when needed. These retractable security grilles are a good deterrent for burglars and also offer a higher level of security.
Period doors can often be very thin, and therefore can be vulnerable to crime. If you have wooden doors, you could consider turning them around so that they open outwards instead of inwards, as this makes it harder for thieves to kick them in.
Georgian homes were built during the 18th Century and are often very symmetrical with large solid front doors, whereas Victorian properties were built during the 19th Century, identifiable by their red brick, large bay windows and gothic architectural style. Victorian front doors were representative of wealth within the community, presented through colourful, patterned tiling in the artwork on the door. If your door is from the Victorian or Georgian era, it may not be as durable or sturdy as more modern doors to protect from intruders, with an increased risk of age and wear making it vulnerable to break-ins.
There have been advancements in door security for period properties, with improvements supported by the government’s Building Regulations. Doors should meet or exceed the British Standard PAS24 and locks should conform to British Standard 3621 . You should check that your new front door meets the latest minimum British Standards in aspects of glass for security, thermal ability, energy-efficiency and safety qualities. Modern security systems can be installed to your period front door and property, ensuring that its original charm and elegance is sustained to achieve a period aesthetic without compromising security. In order to protect your period property, the main doors should have a door viewer, such as clear glass or a window next to the doorset, a door chain or limiter. A door chain or limiter is not always necessary and there can be alternative ways to identify visitors, such as electronic audio-visual door entry systems.
Furthermore, a good locking system will ensure that your home is secure, by having locks built in with bars, bolts and support structures to strengthen the body of your door. Locks available for timber doors are considered far superior and stronger than those for uPVC, composite or aluminium doors, as these can be worked into the door and provide you with the flexibility to choose from a range of high-quality door locks. If you do not have a timber door, there are options for improving uPVC door security, these can be secured by design accreditation and police approved. Examples of these include: anti-snap locks, uPVC door handles, door chains and sash jammers to improve the security of the door, these prevent the door from opening if the lock is broken or opened. High bolts or dog bolts can also be fitted to an opening door, as when it is closed hinge bolts will prevent the door from being forced open off the hinges.
There are many options to increase security solutions through the use of locks for period doors, such as mortice locks. Mortice locks are fitted inside the edge of the door, these make it difficult to break into as most of the locking mechanism is contained inside the door frame. They are visually pleasing as less of the locking mechanism is visible, and therefore do not compromise the style and aesthetics of your original period home.
You could also consider using deadlocks or deadbolts as a secure locking system, manually operated using a key. When a deadlock is unlocked, it is held in the withdrawn position. These are much easier to unlock in emergency situations, such as fires overall providing higher safety measures.
Modern Security Solutions
You could consider installing modern technology and security solutions into your period property, whilst retaining its grandeur and style. A requirement of home technology is to install alarm systems, alarm bell boxes and CCTV systems, all of these can be hidden if you do not want them to affect your house’s period style. Modern lighting is also ideal for preventing burglaries and you can find specialist security lights in a period style or adapt outdoor lighting with a standard movement sensor.
You could also consider fitting spy holes, door chains and bars to your period front door, carefully designed to retain your door’s style but also to prevent intruders. You could consider replacing the spy-hole with a security camera or smartphone app for peace of mind. Wireless technology can be an asset to period properties and can be easily fitted without damaging its original features. You can also use remote monitoring and viewing from your smartphone to identify visitors without affecting your personal security. It is also possible to automate security functions and control them remotely from your smartphone or computer. Discretely styled monitoring equipment and wireless technology can allow higher levels of security for your home, whilst retaining the period aesthetic and in some instances, you won’t fall under planning legislation.
Top Tips for Ensuring Home Security for your Period Property
Hide all keys, especially away from the letterbox as a device could be used to hook keys through.
Install a visual burglar alarm and outside lighting.
Ensure you have good rear and outside fencing to protect your property.
Improve natural surveillance at the front of your property, e.g. trim high hedges.
Mark your property with postcode and house number and register your property for free with Immobilise. The system where you can register your valuable to reduce crime.
Consider joining or forming a Neighbourhood Watch Scheme.
Avoid becoming a victim of a distraction burglary, if you’re unsure of who is at your door, don’t open it, check the identity of the caller by calling the company they are claiming to be from.
Use automatic timer-switches to turn on your lights and radios when it gets dark.
Use the Royal Mail’s ‘KeepSafe’ service, they keep your mail for up to two months while you’re away to prevent mail sitting on your doorstep as a sign that you’re away.
Some of us like to let our hair down when bringing in the New Year; whether you are going to a house party or out on the town. But it’s also an evening you may be at your most vulnerable, in London alone in they increase police presence to 3000 officers around the city because of New Years Eve. Now we’re not saying that you should stay wrapped up in your home with the doors locked, but there are ways you can keep yourself safe while out.
Always have eyes on your drink.
If your drink is unattended for any length of time, then the safe bet is to get a new one. It takes second for someone to slip something in to a drink that’s been left. It is also unadvisable to accept a drink from a stranger, unless you have seen the bartender make it. Saving money on a drink is not worth the risk.
Maintain the #squadgoals
Always keep an eye on where your friends are. If you’ve gone out in a group, make sure no one has been left on their own, and that you haven’t been left on YOUR own. There are so many ways to lose your squad on a night out like; going to the loo or queueing at the bar. But it is so important that you keep each other safe. You are less likely to be targeted by criminals if you are in a group.
The creepy guy has no right to grab you.
When you and your friends are having a good time on the dance floor and someone is getting too close for comfort or touching you; tell them to stop and go away. If a person keeps touching you, after you have told them to stop, or is getting too close for comfort then tell a member of security staff or bar staff, they should deal with them for you.
Use bright and busy streets
So the place you’re at is a bit naff and you fancy moving on. Make sure you walk down streets that are well-lit and busy. When you are out in the cold it may be tempting to take a short cut down a back alley or park. This will leave you extremely vulnerable, especially if you are on your own. There will be plenty of people around on New Years Eve so you shouldn’t find it hard to find people around. Don’t be the cliché girl in the horror movie, who walks right into the monster down the dark alleyway!
Your bag is not worth your life (even if it is Michael Kors)
If the worst does happen and someone tries to steal your bag…let them. You can replace everything that’s in there and If someone is willing to try to take your bag in the street then they are probably willing to hurt you to get it. If you don’t put up any fight they will most likely to leave you alone. It’s a good idea to keep your keys in in your pocket, so if someone does take your bag then you can still get in at home.
Never drink and drive…obviously
Make sure you plan how you are getting home. If you have a plan in place then you are less likely to be tempted to drink drive. Try to pre book a taxi or beg a friend for a lift. If you do end up getting a taxi, then make sure he is licenced. Take a picture of his licence number and send it to a family member or a friend, a legit taxi driver shouldn’t mind you doing this.
It’s all fun and games until someone loses an eye (literally)
Fireworks are an integral part of New Years Eve, but unless you are an expert you should not be lighting up those bad boys yourself. It might not be you lighting them, but if an intoxicated friend tries to start a display…MOVE AWAY. It might be fun looking at the pretty lights, but what won’t be fun is ending up in hospital with burns. Leave it to the professionals.
So if you decide to go out to celebrate New Years Eve, make sure that you take steps to keep yourself safe. We wish you all a safe and prosperous New Year!
Pets are much loved members of the family, and their safety and security is just as important as ours. The Kennel Club reported in 2014 there were more than 70,000 pets missing in the UK, with this worrying statistic in mind we have collated a few tips to help keep your pets safe and secure.
Pet Microchips and collars
Dogs are required by law to wear collars in public, displaying clearly their owners name and address , in order to help recover them when he or she is lost or stolen. From April 2016 it became compulsory for owners to microchip their dogs and all details be kept up to date . Microchips are often considered a more reliable form of identification, as unlike a collar, the implanted microchip cannot be easily removed. Cats are not required by law to wear a collar or be microchipped; however for their safety and security it is advisable that they also have a form of identification.
It is also advised that pet owners should take photos of their pets regularly, and write down a clear description taking note of any distinguishing marks in case a pet ever goes missing.
The safety and security of pets is priceless, however it is important to remember that pets are a huge financial investment, with owners having to pay costly veterinary bills for the treatment of illness and injury. Pet insurance provides a safety net to help safeguard you from any emergency costs related to your pets, including cover for theft or loss.
Walking the dog
When taking a dog for a walk they are safest when on a leash, however most dogs needs to be let off the lead when it is safe to do so, in order to run around and explore. Owners are advised to train their dogs to stay within view when off the lead and to respond to their owners call when summoned.
Often people will leave their dog tied up outside a shop or premises where they are not allowed inside, but this can be very dangerous and be used a great opportunity for a thief. It is best to avoid leaving your pet outside on its own or with strangers, as they are most vulnerable when they are not with their owners.
Cats often come in and out of a home without their owner’s knowledge, putting them at risk of theft. It is advisable a cat is trained to come indoors when summoned by a certain sound or at a specific time. It is recommended owners keep their cats indoors throughout the night in order to safeguard them from foxes, drivers and various other dangers.
For security purposes, a cat flap should only be fitted on the side of the door away from the handle, or fitted to the wall instead of a door, this helps prevent burglars and intruders using the cat flap to put their hand through and reach the lock or key
In the unfortunate event of losing a pet, the search should be initiated by informing all local veterinary practices, animal welfare organisations and your local animal warden service. The next step would be circulating flyers displaying a photo of your pet and highlighting any distinguishable features.
Remember to inform all agencies if you find your pet, and remove all flyers and lost pet notices. The lost and found system is extremely busy and overflowing with details that other owners have a huge difficulty being reunited with their pets.
If you are at all concerned with the safety of your pet there are various organisations out there that can help and provide advice, some of these are linked below. You can also contact your pet’s registered veterinary practice as they are experts and always more than happy to help.
Your pets may be safe while you are watching over them but what happens when you leave the house? For those who are constantly on the move, whether you are working full time or doing the school run, it can be impossible to be at home all day. However, many will feel sceptical leaving their pets home alone. Installing a smart home security device, including a camera, can allow owners to keep an eye on their pets remotely. There are other smart security devices on the market that don’t just include cameras to keep your pets safe, like a monitored smoke detector. Having a device like this could save the lives of your pets in the event of a fire.
Pet cameras have come a long way in the past couple of years. Advancements including 2 way microphones and treat dispensers mean it’s never been easier to keep an eye and interact with your pet when you’re not at the house. We are going to run down the best pet cameras on the market and help you find one that suitable for your home and budget!
Furbo- £199.00 from Amazon
The Furbo is a solid choice for a dog owner, because it is specifically design for dogs. There is a treat dispenser, which you can control from your phone, which is great if your dog is getting a little distressed when you’re not home. Another feature is the 2 way speaker, meaning if your dog does become very distressed while you’re out, then you can try and sooth them. You can also use the night vision to check on your dog throughout the night. What sets the Furbo apart from the others is the ‘bark sensor’ you will get a notification if your puppy is barking, meaning you know when you need to use the treat dispenser or the 2 way speaker.
The design of Furbo is also a plus; its sleek and stylish, meaning it’s not obtrusive in your home. The picture quality is great, meaning you can post any footage you like on social media. Plus 2 people can use the app, so you and your partner can both keep an eye!
Pawbo+- £99 from Amazon
2 way speaker
Pawbo is aimed at both cat and dog owners. It includes a fun laser game so you can keep your cat entertained remotely. Pawbo also has a treat dispenser and a 2 way speaker so you can sooth your pet while you’re away. The picture quality isn’t quite as good as the Furbo, however 8 people can use the app at once and talk to your pet throughout the day.
The Pawbo has a range of ringtones you can play, including birds chirping, cats meowing, a rat squeaking or a plastic bag rustling and the laser game aimed at cat. However animal behaviourists have said that this may confuse your pet, so it’s worth being mindful when using this feature.
Petcube Bites- £189.60 from Amazon
2 way speaker
Can stream directly to Facebook Live
This camera is a bit chunkier than the others and comes with a high capacity treat holder, so if you have more than one pet, you won’t run out of treats fast. Whenever sound or movement is detected the Petcube will make short videos and with the app you can see up to 4 hours of clips. This is the only camera to offer a treat giving schedule, meaning you don’t have to take time out of your work day to do it. You can also vary the distance the Petcube throws the treat, from nearby, to 6 foot!
Vimtag 720p HD- £49.99 from Amazon
2 way speaker
With the Vimtag you can pan and tilt the camera so you can see all around the room, which is useful if you’re pet likes to wander around. You can be sent motion detected notifications, so you know when you pet is moving around, rather than watching them sleep for hours on end. You can also chat with your pet through the 2 way camera an see them in the dark with the night vision feature. It doesn’t have a treat dispenser, but is a good little camera if you just want to keep an eye on your pet.
CleverDog- £30 from Amazon
2 way speaker
Sends picture to your phone when motion is detected
If you’re looking for a pet camera that value for money, then look no further than the CleverDog. You can communicate with your pet through the 2 way speaker and see them in the dark with night vision. The camera is pretty good and you can take pictures of your pet while you’re away from home. Like the others it alerts you to any noise or movement, with notifications to your phone. If you can live without a treat dispenser then, this is a great little camera that perfect for checking in on your pet.
If you are at all concerned with the safety of your pet there are various organisations out there that can help and provide advice, some of these are linked below. You can also contact your pet’s registered veterinary practice as they are experts and always more than happy to help.
For more tips on how to keep your home secure in order to keep your loved ones and pets’ safe, head over to security tips page https://www.keytek.co.uk/security-tips/
A burglary is every home owner’s nightmare, however the steps taken immediately following a break-in are vital to help put things back in order. We have put together this guide for those who have been burgled, or those who would like to be prepared just in case the worst were to occur.
Call the Police.
Waste no time in calling the police and putting the incident on record. This is required for insurance claims, helping to find the perpetrators and retrieving your belongings. If you are not inside your home when you discover it has been broken into, we advise you call the police from outside the home, either using a mobile or a neighbours phone. The police will provide you with a unique crime reference number, ensure to note this down as this will be required by your insurance provider.
Don’t Touch Anything!
It is vital you do not touch anything before the police arrive, as you many destroy key evidence the police will need for finding, and potentially prosecuting the burglars and retrieving your stolen goods.
Record all Stolen or Damaged Items and Property
After the police have arrived make a complete list of all property that has been stolen and damaged, this will be needed by your insurers as well. You will have to include thorough descriptions including anything that could make your items unique, such as marks or serial numbers, and also note the approximate value of each item.
Inform Your Bank
It is important to inform your bank or card company straight away and ensure your credit and debit cards are cancelled, and your finances are checked for any suspicious activity. It isn’t necessary for your cards to be stolen; a burglar could simply note down the card number and details to make purchases online.
Call Your Insurers
Call your insurance provider within 24 hours and submit all necessary information needed to process your claim. Your insurer will require the list of items stolen or damaged in the incident, and will also need your unique crime reference number.
Secure Your Home
Once the police have instructed it is okay to do so, and all necessary details have been documented, you should start to clear up all indications of a break in, and repair any damaged doors and windows. It is vital to upgrade your security, and to secure any weak points in order to prevent any incidents in the future.
Your front door is your first line of defence against a burglary, therefore it is vital to consider the security you have in place; updating the locks on your doors and windows will help reduce the risk of crime. At KeytekTM Locksmiths we aim to ensure all our customers are provided the best possible solutions to their problems, for this reason all of our engineers offer full home security and insurance compliance checks, and ensure to recommend quality products that will meet all your needs. To upgrade your security call a locksmith today on 03303320589 or visit https://www.keytek.co.uk.
Student years are bound to be some of the best of your life, and with these tips we aim to help you keep safe and secure whilst having fun. Students are one of the most targeted groups and are recognized for being at high risk of crime. This is due to the variety of expensive gadgets a student possesses, such as mobile phones, laptops and TV’s to name a few, because of this it is vital students are aware of how to keep themselves and their belongings secure.
Leaving home to study is both a stressful and exciting time, so we are aware reviewing the security of your student halls/house will be the last thing on your mind. For your peace of mind it is worth looking at the security of your accommodation and taking any necessary measures.
Ensure to check the locks on your doors when moving in. If you notice the lock has any faults, alert campus staff or your landlord urgently so the problem can be resolved as soon as possible.
Make sure the locks in your accommodation comply with your home insurance policies, failure to do so could compromise yours or your landlord’s policy.
Remember to ask your parents to check if their home insurance policy protects student contents.
Remember to lock your doors and windows even if you’re leaving just for a moment, and keep valuable items out of sight.
Record full details of any valuables such as laptops, tablets or TVs and mark them with a UV pen.
If you rent a property, check the exterior for any areas of potential weakness and highlight these to your landlord.
Universities take various steps to safeguard their students, with almost all Universities having easy to contact campus security team only a phone call away. There are numerous ways you can ensure your personal safety and security while on campus.
Never leaves bags, purses, laptops or other valuables unattended.
Avoid carrying large amounts of money around with you and be cautious when using on campus ATMs, especially in the night.
Use the buddy system as a precaution when walking around after dark. The greater number of people you walk with me, the safer you are.
Be careful who you disclose your whereabouts to. It is wise to let your close friends or roommates knows where you are going and who you are meeting, however be careful about posting your plans on social media as you don’t know who may be watching.
Night Out Security
Socialising is a huge part of student life and nights out are often where the best memories are made, therefore it is crucial to remember your safety while you are most vulnerable to ensure you have a good time and nights to remember for the right reasons.
Before you head out make sure you have arranged how to get home safely. Keep your transport money separate from your spending money, or pick a designated driver beforehand.
Avoid carrying valuables with you. Keep items such as your bag, mobile phone and purse secured and out of sight.
Be wary when accepting a drink from someone else, and make sure you never leave your drink unattended.
Pace yourself when you are drinking and know your limits.
Make sure not to travel alone, particularly at night.
Remember your University will always provide you with emergency contacts and support throughout your time away from home. We hope that these tips provide you with the foundation to a safe and secure University experience.
There are many things to consider when keeping yourself and your home secure; because of this some important security aspects get overlooked. There are more ways to keep yourself secure than just locking your doors, so we have created a list of things nearly everyone forgets.
Many spend a lot of money on expensive power tools which are often left out in the open when they’re not stored in sheds and outbuildings, making them a popular target for burglars. Engraving tools with your postcode or house number, or using an “UV” ink pen, will make it easier for the police to identify and retrieve if stolen.
Jewellery, heirlooms, and collectables
Jewellery and other valuables can be secured in safes and hidden in secret spaces around your home, however many forget to insure these valuables. Jewellery insurance most often covers accidental damage, loss and theft, ensuring that jewellery and other valuables can be repaired or replaced.
Private and important documents
Homes are full of valuable items, but ones often overlooked are important documents which are just as desirable to a burglar as your big screen TV. Private documents such as birth certificates, passports, property deeds, tax returns and legal contracts should be kept securely in a fire-proof safe. When destroying important documents it is important to use a shredder in order to prevent them falling into the wrong hands.
Medication should be treated like any other valuable item in a home and should be stored securely. Pain killers and prescription medication are highly targeted by burglars, and medication in the wrong hands, such as curious children and forgetful seniors, can be lethal, for this reason medicine cabinets should be kept in a secure location, and should not be accessible to everyone.
Passwords and PIN numbers
We have been warned on several occasions that it is not recommended to write down passwords and PIN numbers, as these can cause a lot of harm when in the wrong hands. When storing passwords and PINs, it is recommended to encrypt or password protect files.
When securing your property and belongings, it is important to remember there are various measures to take. Here at KeytekTM we believe security of your home starts at your front door, and our local locksmiths aim to provide the best solutions to your security problems. Book a KeytekTM Locksmith to upgrade the security of your home by calling 03303320589 or visit https://www.keytek.co.uk