What Education Is Helpful to Become a Locksmith?

Locksmiths make locks and replicate keys, among other tasks. You can seek locksmith training courses that teach the basics of keys and locking mechanisms. The education and training information for becoming a locksmith can be found below.

Training for a Career as a Locksmith

While locksmith training can be completed on-the-job through apprenticeships, locksmith training courses can help you gain basic technical skills in a relatively short amount of time. According to the Associated Locksmiths of America (ALOA), individuals who attend education programs can shorten the length of their on-the-job training (www.aloa.org). On-site and online training courses can be found through professional locksmith organizations, like the ALOA, lock manufacturers, community colleges and technical schools. The ALOA also advises that aspiring locksmiths may want to take mathematics, electronics, physics and mechanical drawing courses during high school.

Important Facts About Locksmiths and Safe Repairers

Entry-Level Education High school diploma or equivalent
On-the-Job Training Long-term on-the-job training
Median Salary (2018) $41,450 (for locksmiths and safe repairers)*
Job Outlook (2016-2026) 3% decline (for locksmiths and safe repairers)*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Locksmith Skills and Job Duties

Locksmiths are often called upon to help people who have locked themselves out of their cars, homes and businesses. As a locksmith, you may perform tasks such as fixing broken locks, picking locks, and duplicating keys with a key cutting machine. You could also install electronic alarm systems, drill safe locks, and troubleshoot lock malfunctions. Depending on where you work, you may also be responsible for cataloguing and keeping records of a company's keys.

Locksmith Training Programs

A locksmith training program can teach you the basics of lock and key operation. You can learn how to cut, copy and fit keys, in addition to installing locks, deadbolts and locking devices for safes. Through training programs, you can learn the basics of the trade, which include how to properly unlock car doors, replace locks, and make new keys. Electronic locking technology, such as key cards, is also studied. Other topics of study may include:

  • Locksmith tools
  • Locking mechanisms
  • Working with safes and vaults
  • Car locks
  • Electronic security systems
  • Bank lock devices
  • Key duplication and impression
  • Door lock disassembly and reassembly
  • Locksmith business practices