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How to open a locked and broken upvc door?


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Established Member
18 Jan 2009
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London UK
Whilst I agree with Jonwar, having also been a locksmith for 10 years, a wide prying tool (ie: 3"+) or an airbag is unlikely to do much harm, and members of this forum are typically well above average with their problem solving and practical mechanical skills, so there's a sporting chance they'll get it open.

A locksport enthusiast is unlikely to be much help, as this isn't a lock which needs picking. I pick locks for business and recreation, but this is a quite different kettle of fish.

My advice is get your wide prying tool and/or airbag, and try to lever the door away from the frame at the extreme top and bottom (not at the same time).

This should give you a chance to peek at the locking points and see what they are. A wide tool will not do much harm to the upvc, but avoid anything which focuses force in a small area - uPVC will dent easily if you use anything narrower than 2" wide. Once you've seen the locking points, you can usually infer which was they need to move to unlock the mechanism, and with some ingenuity you can persuade them to move thusly, and open the door.

Let us know what you find, and we might be able to offer more specific advice.


Yep, I collect tools and tat
8 Dec 2007
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Leicestershire England
Ok, finally had a moment to look at it.
Many thanks to all who chipped in, much appreciated.
Put an airbag in gap at bottom to tease open the gap. Established position of latch roller and slipped in a scraper under it. Knocked it up and voila.
The gearbox was unlocked/knackered enough for both latches to move to "open".
Picked up replacement gearbox and re-fitted system.
So why did it fail?
On top of age related wear and tear the door had dropped causing the latching rollers to bottom out in their receivers. This meant that to get the key to turn freely and deadbolt you had to rotate hard on the handle and make the rollers"lift" the door. This extra strain snapped the gearbox mechanism
Door duly adjusted.
New door now on hold.
Cheers Andy
Last edited:


Established Member
17 Oct 2019
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Thanks for telling us how you sorted it. We all learn from others and taking the time to 'finish off' a thread like this is very helpful.


Established Member
29 Aug 2021
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Hello All,

Need a bit of help, my 9 year old Upvc conservatory has a pair of outward opening doors and I have noticed that the handle of one of the doors fails to return to the horizontal position
when operated. Its as if a return spring has broken. The locking mechanism consists of 3 claws, 4 rollers together with top and bottom bolts. The name on the mechanism is Safeware.
Would really appreciate any assistance from anyone who has any experience with this type of lock failure and if its possible to replace the broken item or is it likely that a replacement lock itself
is required. I take it that when all the screws are removed then the complete lock ( top to bottom) is removed in its entirety.
Thanks in advance.

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