Unlocking Doors with a Bobby Pin A Comprehensive Guide

Unlocking Doors with a Bobby Pin A Comprehensive Guide


Locking yourself out of your home or accidentally leaving your keys inside can be a frustrating experience. In such situations, knowing how to unlock a door with common household items, like a bobby pin, can be a valuable skill. This detailed guide will walk you through the step-by-step process of using a bobby pin to unlock a door, providing a simple and effective solution for those unexpected lockouts.

Understanding the Basics of Locks:

Before attempting to unlock a door with a bobby pin, it’s crucial to have a basic understanding of the types of locks you might encounter. Most residential doors are equipped with pin tumbler locks, consisting of a series of pins that align to open the lock when the correct key is inserted.

Gathering the Necessary Tools:

To successfully pick a lock with a bobby pin, you’ll need a few essential tools:

  1. Bobby Pins: Choose two bobby pins, preferably with a smooth and straight design.
  2. Tension Wrench: This tool helps apply tension to the lock, allowing you to manipulate the pins more effectively.

Creating a Tension Wrench:

  1. Straighten one of the bobby pins, leaving a small L-shaped bend at one end to act as the tension wrench.
  2. Insert the tension wrench into the lower part of the keyhole and apply slight rotational pressure in the direction you would turn the key.

Fashioning the Bobby Pin Lock Pick:

  1. Straighten the second bobby pin, leaving a small bend at the end to serve as the pick.
  2. Curve the pick slightly to mimic the shape of a key.

Lock Picking Technique:

  1. Insert the Tension Wrench: Place the tension wrench into the lower part of the keyhole, applying gentle pressure in the direction you would turn the key.
  2. Insert the Bobby Pin Pick: Insert the curved end of the bobby pin above the tension wrench. Gently push the pins upward, attempting to mimic the action of a key.
  3. Feel for Binding Pins: As you apply pressure with the tension wrench, you’ll feel the pins binding. Release pressure slightly on the tension wrench to allow the pins to set.
  4. Repeat the Process: Move along the lock, repeating the process of applying pressure, releasing, and gently manipulating the pins until all the pins are set.

Troubleshooting Tips:

  • If the lock doesn’t open, reevaluate the tension and pressure applied to the pins.
  • Ensure that your bobby pin pick is correctly positioned and shaped.
  • Practice patience, as lock picking may require several attempts.

Legal and Ethical Considerations

It’s important to note that lock picking should only be use in emergency situations, and with the explicit permission of the property owner. Engaging in lock picking without proper authorization may be illegal and could result in serious consequences.


Learning how to unlock a door with a bobby pin can be a handy skill in certain situations. However, it’s essential to use this knowledge responsibly and ethically. In case of a lockout, consider seeking professional help or contacting the property owner before attempting to pick a lock.