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For commercial organizations, there are countless components that make up a successful business and contribute to your bottom line. One of those components that can occasionally go unnoticed is physical security. In our modern age, many organizations focus on high-tech solutions to security and loss prevention problems, but the foundation of your security still rests on the basics: locks and keys. Innovations in the key industry mean that managing your organization’s physical security is easier and more secure than ever before. One of the most impactful ways to enhance your physical security and your bottom line is with rekeyable locks.
What are Rekeyable Locks?
Rekeyable locks are InstaKey’s patented interchangeable cores that can be rekeyed without having to be removed from the lock housing. Each rekeyable core can be rekeyed up to 12 times, depending on the key system design, before it needs to be removed from the lock and replaced. And like all interchangeable key cores, once the rekeyable lock needs to be removed, it can be done easily without the assistance of a locksmith.
How Do Rekeyable Locks Work?
A rekeyable lock is an innovation built upon the ease of interchangeable cores. These key cores were created in the early 1900’s to address the frustrations of needing a professional locksmith every time a rekey was necessary. Rekeyable cores improve upon this design with an interchangeable core that contains up to 9 rekeys within the single core.
To understand how rekeyable locks work, it helps to understand the pins within a modern key core. Rekeyable locks work in the same way, with pins located within the key core that correspond to associated key cuts. Unlike standard interchangeable cores, rekeyable locks include a step change key that can alter the pins within the lock.
When a notched step change key is inserted and turned in a rekeyable lock, it alters off a pin and captures it in the key notch. When the step change key is removed, you’ll notice a single pin will also be removed from the lock. This changes the alignment of the pins to match the next set of key cuts in that rekeyable lock system, and the previous keys will no longer work. You can see this in action in a short video here.
For each rekeyable lock, a step change key and replacement user keys can be ordered in bulk or as-needed and keyed to your needs to fit into your preferred method of managing rekeys.
The Financial Benefits of Rekeyable Cores
While implementing new hardware into an existing location can come with an up-front installation cost, the long-term benefits of using rekeyable locks can be considerable. And the more doors equipped with rekeyable locks across multiple locations, the higher the savings become. Here are the three ways that utilizing rekeyable locks can have financial benefits for organizations of any size.
1. Reduce Costs Associated With Rekeying
There are a few different costs that can be associated with rekeying. As any commercial organization knows, rekeying is inevitable when an employee misplaces a key, a key isn’t returned when an employee leaves the organization, or any other security breach that requires changing the locks. Depending on the hardware installed for physical security, rekeying could require assistance from a professional locksmith, ordering a replacement interchangeable core, or pulling a key core from pre-ordered stock in storage. All of these options come with associated costs, both in time and for your bottom line.
For organizations that have not upgraded to interchangeable cores, the cost savings of implementing rekeyable locks can be considerable. Calling a locksmith every time a lock needs to be changed is a waste of both time and money. With commercial key advancements over the last hundred years, having a locksmith on call is unnecessary.
With rekeyable cores, you can manage rekeys in-house and avoid the ordering and storage hassle of stocking spare interchangeable cores.
2. Fewer Costs Related to Key Core Management and Storage
Depending on the size of your organization, the hassle of storing and keeping track of replacement key cores may not be very significant or it could be having a big impact on the day-to-day key upkeep for your Facility Managers. Oftentimes, the frustration with non-rekeyable interchangeable cores is finding the secure space to store replacement cores. The alternative to storing replacement key cores is ordering from your supplier as needed. While this solves the storage problem, it can open a company up to unnecessary security risk. If an employee reports a lost key, which then prompts your Facility Manager to order replacement key cores and associated user keys for any affected doors, you are left waiting for that shipment to arrive. Depending on your key provider, that can take anywhere from a few days to a couple weeks. In that time, your organization is left open to physical security threats if that lost key is found by anyone outside of your company.
Rekeyable cores eliminate these concerns with a single key core that can be rekeyed numerous times before a replacement core is needed. And for companies with good security practices and key holder policies, you can cut down on the need to rekey and the associated step change key and user keys associated with it.
3. Rekey at the Master Key Level Without Affecting User Keys
For companies using a master key system, rekeyable locks offer an additional benefit. Rekeyable locks can be rekeyed at the master key level without affecting user keys. If a master key is lost or stolen, a step change key associated with the affected lock for your master key system can be used to change the locks. While new master keys will need to be distributed to those keyholders, you can avoid affecting user keys and the hassle of distributing new keys to every user. Master keys are an important tool for providing access to those high-clearance employees who need it, but your master key system doesn’t have to put your security at risk. Rekeyable key cores help maintain access for those who need it while making the process of addressing security breaches much simpler.
Rekeyable locks are one part of your larger key control system. By optimizing your existing key practices with innovative hardware, your company can streamline the management of your physical security, cut costs, and maintain tight security. To learn more about InstaKey’s comprehensive Key Control program, click the button below.