If you are still wondering how to become a locksmith then, you need to first choose the right locksmith course. Unless you have the proper training and certifications, practicing this art professionally is an impossible task.
If you become capable of defeating the lock after making it and losing its key then, you are considered to be a good locksmith. I agree that you need to be an apprentice in order to become a professional locksmith yet, different countries have different rules. So, some countries may not require any experience while others may seek an engineering degree for its practice.
It all depends on where you are born or where you intend to practice (the chosen country/state). Keeping the above statement in mind, let me walk you through each and every vital aspect liked with this profession.
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How to Become a Locksmith Write-Up Contents
1) What does a Locksmith Do?
2) How to Become a Locksmith in Australia?
3) How to Become a Locksmith in Ireland?
4) How to Become a Locksmith in the United Kingdom?
5) How to Become a Locksmith in the United States of America?
6) How to Choose the Best Locksmith Course Online?
7) How to Get a Locksmith Certificate Online?
8) What all Should Your Online Locksmith Course Include?
9) How to become a Locksmith of Car?
10) What are the Basic Duties of a Certified Locksmith?
11) How much does it Cost to become a Locksmith?
12) How to become a Mobile Locksmith?
13) What are the Advantages of Becoming a Locksmith?
14) What are the Disadvantages of Becoming a Locksmith?
15) FAQ on How to Become a Locksmith
What does a Locksmith Do?
Even before we discuss this profession, let us first understand what the term locksmith stands for. In order to explain thing better, let me divide this term into two parts – lock & smith.
So, the first part is ‘lock’. Now, a lock is an object that is used to safeguard a safe, a house, a cabinet, a storage space etc. The second part is ‘smith’. A smith is a worker that molds metal into usable objects (such as a lock).
From the above example, we understand that a locksmith is a metal worker that makes a lock and its keys using a specific method (molding or forging). The smith may use ‘hand operated’ or ‘power tools’ to achieve his/her aim.
The History behind this Profession:
The first lock was made almost 2499 years ago (well almost the same time). In those days, the locksmith made use of hand tools and took several hours or even days to construct a lock. At first, the lock was made of wood and later of metal.
In the middle of the 18th century, locks started to be made in a designer specific manner. As demand rose for locks, clones were made. They used the same old concept and were redundant in application.
Only vaults and safes custom designed for banks and business houses used different techniques. Nonetheless, they were expensive and locksmiths for these were scantily available.
The Modern Day Locksmiths:
Power tools have replaced hand held tools for making locks. Nowadays, electronic chips determine the functionality of locks. Buildings use smart keys to open locks and business institutions use transponder based locking mechanism.
As compared to a local handyman, a locksmith has professional knowledge in this field. A skilled locksmith can operate on a wide array of locks. He can make them and also open them without the aid of a key.
The reason why the modern day professional is in demand is owing to his/her advanced skill set. Proper certification followed by apprentice is what makes this professional a force to reckon with.
How to Become a Locksmith in Australia?
You need to have proper qualifications in order to become a practicing locksmith in Australia. In this country, the Australian Qualifications Framework Certificate is of vital importance.
The Level 3 Certification:
A locksmith needs to have a Level 3 issuance in order to practice legally in the country. The course that you need to undergo and pass is termed Technical & Further Education. Once you pass this examination, a Level 3 certificate is issues. After this, you begin your practice as a certified locksmith in Australia.
Criminal Record Check:
You also need to get verification by the police. In case you are serving sentences in Australia then, you may not get a valid license. Moreover, you also need to work as an apprentice under a professional locksmith. This may last up to 4 years.
You can opt for the full length course and learn all the essentials of this job. Alternatively, you can opt for a minimal course to get a Level 3 issuance. This is of less duration but may compromise your salary.
In Australia, you can easily hope to get a salary of $70,000. This is an average salary that an Australian locksmith draws. It may come down to Australian $40,000 as well (as per your current skill level).
How to Become a Locksmith in Ireland?
In Ireland, you need to obtain a certificate from the Private Security Authority. Once that is obtained, you are permitted to practice this professional legally in the country. This was introduced in the year 2016. Before this year, you could practice openly.
The Private Service Authority was established in the year 2004. This government organization controls and governs how locksmiths shall function in Ireland. They issue and even disqualify your licenses. This authority even issues your identification cards.
How to Become a Locksmith in the United Kingdom?
In the United Kingdom, there is no such thing as passing a written or theoretical examination. You can practice this profession here by simply completing your apprentice tenure. Now, this may last 2- 4 years but after that, you are free to practice on your own.
Disclosure & Barring Services:
The only check that aspiring professional in the United Kingdom need to undergo is one conducted by Disclosure and Barring Services. This body shall conduct a background check after which, it shall be determined whether you are all good to go or not.
License & Educational Degree:
Unlike most other countries, you do not need a license to practice locksmith as a profession in the United Kingdom. All you need is to work under a renowned locksmith for a period of 4 years before setting out on your own.
It all depends on your level of expertise and your mentor’s reputation in the market. So, if you are an apprentice then, you can expect to make 1000 pounds a month. In case you begin your practice, you can double this sum – 2000 pounds.
If you are a well-known professional that has been in practice for 5 to 10 years then, you can make 3000 pounds a month. In order to widen your reach and increase your salary, be available 24/7.
Any Profession that Helps?
Well, locksmith is a profession that has similarities with others. So, if you are well versed with what an electrician safe repair worker, carpenter or a plumber does then, it is an added asset.
In the UK, knowledge of these professions shall help boost your growth several folds over. So while you do not need a certificate or a degree, knowledge of these professions shall always work in your favor.
How to Become a Locksmith in the United States of America?
There are a total of 50 states in America. Of these, 15 states have their own licensing laws that govern professional locksmith business. The remaining states have no laws as such and you are free to practice this profession after learning the art.
How to Become a Locksmith in Texas?
>>> In the state of Texas, the Department of Public Safety Private Security Board takes decisions on this profession.
>>> The ‘to be locksmith’ should have a valid license as a practicing professional. This is also termed as a locksmith company license.
>>> You can pass an exam to get a working license. This needs to be followed by one year of successful work completion at a licensed locksmith company.
>>> Alternatively, to work as a licensed locksmith in Texas, you need to work as an apprentice for 2 years in a licensed locksmith company. In this case, you do not have to pass any examination.
How to Become a Locksmith in California?
>>> In this state, the California Department of Consumer Affairs issues valid certificates to practice locksmith legally.
>>> California Bureau of Security and Investigative Services also do the same.
>>> The California Contractors State License Board issues licenses to Qualified Locksmiths to practice professionally.
>>> A background check of the candidate is mandatory in this state.
>>> Locksmiths in California need a Lock and Security Equipment Contractor License to practice. This is also termed as C-28.
How to Become a Locksmith in Florida?
>>> There is no state wide regulation for practicing locksmith in this state.
>>> Miami Dade country in Florida requires license for practicing locksmith as a profession. They even require a license from companies indulged in this profession.
>>> In Miami-Dade country, the locksmith should register with the authorities and receive a license. Locksmith companies should have at least one employee with a valid license to practice this profession.
>>> You should work for a year using a valid permit before being granted a permanent work license in Miami-Dade. So, work permit precedes a valid license.
>>> Locksmith cannot opt for electrical work in Miami-Dade as he/she should have a valid Florida license as an electrician.
>>> While applying for a locksmith license, you need to undergo fingerprinting test. You would also have to opt for a background check.
>>> In Hillsborough County, you need to pay $500 to avail a biennial license to work as a locksmith. This fee is applicable for 5 or less locksmiths working in a single firm.
>>> If your employee list exceeds 5 and is less than or equal to 10 employees then, you need to pay $750. If it exceeds 10 then, $1000 fee for availing a license in Hillsborough County is applicable.
>>> Insurance proof as well as complete background check is mandatory in Hillsborough County.
How to Become a Locksmith in Alabama?
>>> The Alabama Electronic Security Board determines whether you get a license to practice in the state or not.
>>> You need to undergo a certification course that has been prepared by the Alabama Electronic Security Board.
>>> Every two years, a licensed locksmith in Alabama needs to undergo a background check.
>>> You should have completed the basic education as per the state requirements in order to apply for a locksmith license.
How to Become a Locksmith in Connecticut?
>>> The Department of Consumer Protection takes care of licensing work (with regards to locksmith) in this state.
>>> Those that want to become locksmiths in this state need to undergo background checks with the concerned authorities.
>>> If you do get a license to practice, there shall be a review after every 2 years. If you qualify, you can continue working for another two years.
How to Become a Locksmith in Illinois?
>>> Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation is the regulatory authority that determines your fate here.
>>> There is a special licensing course that you need to pass to get a permit in order to practice this profession. The duration of this course is twenty hours.
>>> You should be clean of any misdoing in the past 10 years. So, there should not be any felony offense during this tenure.
>>> In order to practice locksmith as a profession in Illinois, you need to pass the standard ‘20 hour certification’ course.
How to Become a Locksmith in New Jersey?
>>> The New Jersey Board of Examiners of Electrical Contractors determines whether you can work in this state or not.
>>> To work as a professional locksmith in New Jersey, you need to be 18 years of age and above.
>>> You should be working at least 20 hours a week while working with a certified locksmith for a period of three years or more.
>>> There is a special examination that you need to pass in order to become a working locksmith.
How to Become a Locksmith in Louisiana?
>>> You need to pass a special examination to get a license for practicing locksmith as a profession.
>>> The Louisiana Office of State Fire Marshall is the governing body.
>>> If you are dealing with alarm systems or safety equipment then, the state requires you to pass a few more examinations (other than the mandatory one).
>>> You need to pay a one-time registration fee of $250 to apply for a license. Once the license is obtained, you need to pay $50 annually for its maintenance.
How to Become a Locksmith in Nevada?
>>> In the state of Nevada, the County sheriff’s office permits you to either work or not work as a locksmith.
>>> You must not be behind on child support to qualify as a locksmith.
>>> You have to register with the County Sheriffs office before initiating your practice.
How to Become a Locksmith in Maryland?
>>> You need to apply for license as a locksmith in Maryland.
>>> The Maryland Locksmith License Program checks your criminal record prior to granting your license.
>>> The Secretory of Labor determiners whether a prior felon may be granted license to work as a locksmith in the state or not.
>>> Insurance proof as well as liability insurance needs to be submitted by the applicant to the authorities.
>>> If you qualify to work as a locksmith in Maryland, you need to carry an identity card stating the same all the time.
>>> Maryland Department of Labor has the right to grant or cancel a license.
How to Become a Locksmith in Nebraska?
>>> You need to register with the county clerk in Nebraska to work as a locksmith.
>>> The details of your current work place needs to be shared with the county clerk.
How to Become a Locksmith in New York?
>>> There is no legal requirement in the New York state to become a locksmith.
>>> In the Nassau County however, you need a license to practice as a locksmith.
>>> In Nassau County, you need to submit your address proof and photographs. The Passport serves as an identifier and so does the recent telephone bill.
>>> Nassau County requires you to produce the electrical bill of the office and also passport size photographs of all the employees working at the office.
>>> Past and current criminal records of the aspiring locksmiths too have to be submitted.
>>> Nassau County may ask you to produce workers compensation, proof of insurance, documents of incorporation and identification numbers issued by the federal government.
How to Become a Locksmith in Virginia?
>>> The Department of Criminal Justice Services is responsible for issuing licenses in Virginia.
>>> You need to have completed an 18 hours training course in locksmith to qualify.
>>> The age criterion to practice locksmith profession in Virginia is 18 years and above.
>>> You need to fill a Supplement Criminal History form if you are a felon or have prior criminal history in the state of Virginia.
>>> Misdemeanors to the extent of getting traffic tickets too need to be presented at the time of applying.
>>> Fingerprints need to be submitted and you need to undergo full criminal background check prior to being granted a license to practice this profession.
>>> Any false representation of information shall lead to a cancellation of license in Virginia.
How to Become a Locksmith in Oklahoma?
>>> The Oklahoma Department of Labor oversees the licensing feature in this state.
>>> You need to be a part of the Alarm, Locksmith & Fire Sprinkler Program to be able to get an access.
>>> The applicant should not have any felony charge against him/her.
How to Become a Locksmith in Tennessee?
>>> No past present criminal records should be present. Changes in address and citizenship should be reported.
>>> License may be revoked or rejected in case the applicant is involved in robbery, theft, burglary, forgery, felony etc.
>>> Documentation of a registered locksmith company needs to be submitted to the Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance.
How to Become a Locksmith in Oregon?
>>> An applicant in the state of Oregon should not have a past or present criminal background.
>>> There is a special licensee examination that too needs to be passed by the applicant.
>>> A locksmith must get his/her locksmith license renewed every 2 years.
>>> The Oregon Construction Contractors Board oversees the locksmith licensing procedure.
How to Become a Locksmith in North Carolina?
>>> The applicant needs to furbish past criminal history, military discharge and current immigration status prior to getting a locksmith license.
>>> Training certificates in the field of locksmith need to be furbished as well.
>>> Licenses in North Carolina come with a charge. After the one-time fee, annual registration charges also apply.
>>> An apprentice license is mandatory before you begin working as a full-fledged locksmith.
>>> The owner must notify to the North Carolina Locksmith Licensing Board if an issuance of owner’s license to an apprentice has been made.
How to become a Locksmith in Georgia?
>>> In Georgia, the state does not impose any special qualifications for becoming a locksmith.
>>> You need to complete an apprenticeship under a well-known locksmith to start practicing this profession on your own.
>>> You can opt for locksmith courses offered by the Interactive College of Technology in Chamblee.
How to Choose the Best Course Online?
Not all locksmith training schools impart the same skill-set to their students. So, if you really aspire to be the best in the business, here is what you need to look out for while selecting your locksmith training institute:
Ease of Study:
In this era, when everyone is trying to escape the Covid 19 virus, the need for a safe study place is inevitable. This is when online locksmith collages come into picture. There are a couple of institutes in USA that are popular with regards to an online teaching mechanism.
The Recognition Factor:
Despite being the best online locksmith course, if the degree is not accredited by the state government then, everything is null and void. So, even before you choose your online lessons, make sure that they are recognized by the state and central government.
Course Material Covered:
You need to ensure that your chosen locksmith lessons are covering all the important material linked with this craft. In simpler words, how do you train is not as important as absorbing the knowledge disbursed by your trainer.
A few things you need to master:
@ the art of making locks/keys,
@ opening locks without keys,
@ installation of locks and
@ practical aspect of this profession backed by theory is vital.
The Learning Tools:
While the above point covered the course material, the current one covers the learning aid. Your online training institute should provide both digital as well as physical tools to help you learn this art optimally. So, check with the management before enrolling.
How to Get a Locksmith Certificate Online?
When you opt for training via online means, you need to ensure that it is recognized by the government. Now, this is not with special regards to the United States alone.
Europe, Asia and African countries have their own set of rules with regards to approving a particular course and not approving of another. So, you need to know the criterion before applying for an online certification.
If your online locksmith certification institute is recognized and accredited by the government, all is good. If it is not then, you should look for one that offers a certificate that is acceptable.
The Certifications in USA:
You can become a Registered Locksmith, Certified Registered Locksmith, Certified professional Locksmith and Certified Master Locksmith. These certifications have been designed by the American Locksmith of America.
What all Should Your Online Course Include?
>>> Online training should include hands-on training on operating various types of locks and safes.
>>> You should be trained to handle safes used at home, hotels, offices, banks etc.
>>> It should teach you how to open car locks and padlocks. Ideally, the course should lay emphasis on rekeying locks.
>>> Software application related to master key usage should be included in the course.
>>> Code machine basics and keying mechanics should be mentioned. Key control and duplicate key details should also be shared with you.
>>> The art of dealing with high security locks and panic hardware is also mentioned here.
>>> Training to handle and make high security locks and protective service trunks should also be included.
>>> The course should have an online exam. You should get a certificate only when you complete the exam successfully.
>>> The fee should not be too high or too low. I (LeanandFit reviewer)believe an online training certification in locksmith should be well within the $1400 mark.
How to become a Locksmith of Car?
In order to become an automotive expert, you need to undergo training. Moreover, this is a lucrative profession. So, if you are able to complete a government approved training course, you can be set for life.
The USA State Requirements
An automotive locksmith requires a minimal of High School education. Some states also require you to obtain a valid license. To get an in-depth knowledge in the field of auto locksmith, enroll for a government accredited course.
Gain Experience via an Apprentice
In the United States, 15 states require you to get a valid license to practice as a car locksmith. The training can last a few days to a few months – depending on the requirements set by the state government.
Learn the Basics Well
To become a popular automobile expert, you need to learn everything that is in sync with car locks and keys. So, working under a trained car locksmith can get the job done for you. An accredited diploma is also helpful, as it can get you the license to practice this profession legally.
How much does it Cost?
Many aspiring locksmiths in the United States of America wonder whether this course is expensive or not. Well, you have two ways in which to learn this profession.
You can either work as an apprentice of a well-known professional or get certified by an accredited classroom course. This course can either be a classroom cession or based on an online platform.
The cost of an online locksmith course can set you back by anywhere in between $500 to $1500. Some collages in America focusing in similar training can charge higher – up to $3000 for a fortnight long course.
The examination fee to avail a license and certification in USA ranges in between $50 to $310. The Associated Locksmith of America is responsible for this certification. If you work as an apprentice, you may pay $100 and get certified. This takes a year or longer.
Here are some unavoidable costs:
@ You would have to shell out $1000 (on an average) in getting home the basic tool kit.
@ The tool kit for cars also averages $1500. This is inclusive of key duplicators and many other accessories required by car locksmiths.
@ Drill kits and the kit for installing locks are also to be purchased. This may set you back by $1000 (on an average).
How to become a Mobile locksmith?
There are billions of mobile phones in the world. These numbers never slow down and only increase. So, there is a lot of potential in choosing mobiles as your chosen niche area.
Here are the steps to become successful at it:
@ Look for online courses that offer certification in this field. State approved schools that offer such training courses are best suited for the job.
@ You can choose from amidst hands-on training that may last a year to online courses. Nonetheless, both of these should be accredited by the state government. This shall help you get a valid license to practice this skill as a profession.
@ Get associated with the accredited association that is recognized by the state. You may have to pay varied registration fee and charges (as per the state requirements).
@ Criminal background check is mandatory. So, undergo background test that includes fingerprint match.
@ You have to purchase basic tools required by for this job. These include both while undergoing a course and while working professionally.
@ The cost incurred while purchasing the necessary tools and establishing a locksmith business may exceed $10,000.
@ After getting valid certificates and certifications, you need to now start advertising your business. Use social media and blogs for the same.
@ Do a good job to build clients and also to retain them. Repeat clients are when your mobile locksmith business starts to give you lucrative results.
What are the Basic Duties of a Certified Locksmith?
Understanding the basic duties of a locksmith is vital. It is only when you fully comprehend your job at hand would you be able to achieve success. Well, here is what a locksmith job demands from you:
>>> As you have in-depth knowledge on the types of locks, you can provide suggestions to your customers. As a professional craftsman, you can help your customer choose a lock that is most suitable for his/her purpose.
>>> As you know all about commercial as well as residential locks, it is now your job to install them. Apart from locks, advanced security systems as well as surveillance camera installations is also a part and parcel of your job.
>>> You need to know ‘how to cut a key’ and ‘how to prepare a replacement key’ to an existing lock. Re-configuring the pin and altering the numbers on the keypad is also a part and parcel of your job.
>>> The art of opening any lock (residential, official, safe, warehouse etc.) is also a part and parcel of your job profile. So, you need to open locks without as much as scratching them.
>>> You need to know how to work with both manual and power tools designed for this profession.
>>> A seasoned craftsman should also help customize the lock purchase and quotes as per the customer needs.
Does a Locksmith Need Special Skills to Operate?
Yes, locksmith needs to have a certain set of skills that differentiates him/her from others. It is indeed these skills that help a locksmith honor the profession.
A locksmith should have thorough knowledge on working with all kinds of locks. He/she should also be apt with the keys and in sync with the latest technological developments.
He/she should have a calm and rational state of mind backed with a problem solving aptitude. The latest security mechanism as well as the latest lock-key controls should be known by the craftsman.
I also feel that a successful worker is one who can resolve customer issues with the help of logical reasoning. So, simply knowing how to pop a lock is not enough to qualify you as a successful locksmith.
What are the Advantages of this Profession?
@ Learning a new skill is always an asset. This statement is also true with a locksmith skill-set.
@ Locksmith is a profession that is in great demand the world over. It is a growing business. So, shortage of jobs is not an issue. They would continue to grow.
@ You can opt to work for a locksmith company or independently. So, the options here are numerous.
@ There is a lot of travel involved in this profession. This shall keep you on your toes and ensure that you maintain your fitness level.
@ You learn new skills on the job. This profession also helps you develop social network without spending a single dime in return.
@ The earning of a locksmith are in turn of $30,000 to $45000 per year in the United States.
What are the Disadvantages?
@ Locksmith as a profession is rather demanding. It is as much of a mental job as it is a physical one. You need to keep calm in every situation and also reassure your stressed clients that all would be well.
@ As you need to travel extensively, the transportation cost may be on the higher side.
@ Travel also tires you out. Moreover, after a tiring travel to the designated place of work, you need to exhibit immense patience. You cannot pick a lock in a ‘stressed’ state of mind.
@ The cost of buying the basic and even advanced tools is added. So, you may have to shell out $10,000 in getting everything in place. The cost increases if you want to open a professional company.
@ There are no fixed hours of work in this profession. You need to work as per the requirements of the job. So, you need to work nights and even days. This can be taxing for a few.
@ The place where you work is not always sunlit or clean. You may have to work in dirty places and those that are enclosed from all sides (offering no cross-ventilation).
FAQ on How to Become a Locksmith
Q-1: How do you Train?
A-1: In order to learn this craft in its complete entirety, you need to train optimally. Take an online or a classroom course and get a license to practice (if required). You should be a professional and proficient locksmith in 3 to 4 years.
Q-2: How Long is the Course?
A-2: It could be a few days to a few months (depending on the type of course you choose). Professional training schools usually provide a diploma. The duration for such courses is a few months. Online courses are shorter (generally a few days to a few weeks).
Q-3: How to Become a Professional?
A-3: To become a professional locksmith, you need to work under a trained locksmith. This training could last 2 years. A certificate from a government accredited institute helps. You may also need a license from the state government to practice this professional legally.
Q-4: How to become Pop a Lock?
A-4: To become a qualified pop a lock, you need to get a government approved diploma. You may need a license to practice (in 15 states of USA). Working under an apprentice for 2 to 4 years makes you a proficient pop a lock.
Q-5: How Much can I Earn in USA?
A-5: The average salary of a locksmith in the United States is $19.70 per hour. You tend to earn more as per the working hours you devote towards this job.
A beginner earns $25,000 per year. Intermediate level worker earns $40,000 a year. A veteran earns $60,000 per annum.
Q-6: What are the Cost Involved in this Profession?
A-6: A locksmith needs basic tools such as a drill machine, key tools, cutting machine and picking tools. You also need to invest in a vehicle and gas related costs. Advertising your locksmith business also incurs a cost.
You also needs to get the basic material such as hinges, handles as well as a few varieties of locks. You may need to insure your vehicle or your company (if you own a firm).
Q-7: How to Save Money and become a Professional at this Profession?
A-7: Avoid stacking your cupboards with tools that are unnecessary. Always buy tools as per your chosen designated area. You also need to ensure that you avoid spending excessively on marketing your profession. Develop a client base based on trust in a slow yet steady manner.
Locksmith as a profession can be really lucrative. All you need to do is approach this profession in the correct manner. The appropriate degrees backed by licenses (wherever applicable) can help you make more money.
The trick here is to make sure that you gather all the vital information pertaining to this profession. When your knowledge in locksmith is flawless, you shall never go wrong.
So, when you are helping others resolve their lock & key issues, you develop a large client base. When you have a vast client base, you are bound to increase your revenue. This is how you make your life better and fruitful.