UPVC front door can't open from outside

10 Apr 2010
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United Kingdom

I've searched the forum and found entries for similar sounding problems but no solutions.

When trying to open my upvc front door from the outside the key will not turn the final required amount to disengage the latch if the deadbolts have been engaged AND the door has been locked.

If the deadbolts have been engaged (by lifting the handle) but the door not physically locked then I can still use the key from the outside to disengage the latch and open the door.

The door has split level handles so when you close it you require a key to re-enter from the outside. I have taken the handles off and re-attached them. No problems from what I can see but the problem remains.

The lock and barrel are fine. I have already tried a replacement Euro Cylinder only to experience the same results.

The door can be locked and unlocked the from both sides without problem.

From the inside the handle disengages the latch so not a problem there.

From the outside the deadbolts are engaged by lifting the handle and disengaged by lowering it.

From the outside the latch has to be disengaged through a turn of the key but the key wont turn that last required amount.

This is the same if the door is closed or open so I do not believe hanging / hinges are an issue.

If I try with the door open then once I have pressed in the latch with my finger the key will then turn from the outside to disengage the latch until the deadbolts are engaged and the door is locked once more.

Hopefully I have explained the problem clearly - took me a while to put this together!!!

Is this a common problem ?

Any suggestions on how I can fix this myself or does this sound like a job for a local locksmith / upvc repairer ?

The door is approximately 2.5 years old and was covered by a 10 Guarantee but from reading other posts it seems that locks are usually not covered and also I think the company may have gone so the guarantee is worthless - Is my understanding correct of these points?

All advice welcome,

Thanks you,
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I understood you Catt, now then i would of said change your cylinder as they are known to fail and give similar problems but as you have then all that it could be really is the mechanism, you also say with the door open it does the same until you help the latch by pressing it in but once you close the door it plays up again.

I agree its a job for maybe not a locksmith but like you suggest a double glazing repairer, i sometimes came across little things like this, i removed the mech and gave it a tap on the floor, sometimes a bit of plastic swarf came out or even a spring and some metal bits which were jamming the workings up. worked afterwards though ;)

If it needs a mech then they range from £80 to £120 depending which you have.
Many thanks Crank.

Before I investigate purchasing new and replacing the mechanism can anyone suggest a good guide for removing and replacing the mechanism so that I can see if I can get the current one working again? (I appreciate there may be variations depending on which type of mechanism I have).

I will make sure I update this post with what I had to do to fix the problem for future reference of all.
First of all take handles off and remove the barrel.

Look up and down the mech and you'll see lots of pozi headed screws, start removing these, only remove the self tapping ones though, they'll be about an inch long, if you come across one that has a machine thread (like a bolt thread) screw it back in and move on to the next, these screws hold the gearboxes on thay house the hooks, no harm will be done unless you remove the screws completely.

Once all the screws are out the mech should come away and out of the door, sometimes the rubber gasket on the door is a bit thick and the mech fouls this but just pull it past, it wont hurt.

Please dont strip the main gearbox down though as knowing sods law as i do 20 springs will ferr-ding all over the place and it'll never work again :D
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lmao - Thanks for the warning Crank :LOL:

Will ensure only the correct screws are removed and will let everyone know whether or not I am successful

Cheers - very much appreciated
Crank - you were right about the gear box being the problem but I decided not to replace it myself.

Locksmith came out today from Access Locks in Whitby, Ellesmere Port.

My wife dealt with the gentleman who came out and spoke very highly of his professionalism. To keep costs down he tried replacing the original gear box once he had removed and cleaned it to see if it would work again but no luck in our case. Ended up replacing the gear box to front door Yale multi point, tried to straighten out slighly warped front door and also adjusted our conservatory doors which had become slightly out of line.

When he took the gear box out there was a missing spring and sheared metal. Possibly caused by front door being slightly warped.

Cost £128.

Will use this company again if we have issues and would recommend this company to others.

Many thanks again Crank for your suggestions.

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