Enter your city or zip code to see if we service your neighborhood.


Tap the target to detect your current location.

Searching for your service area...

You're in luck, we have technicians in your area ready to assist.

1 location(s) found near:
Woodland Hills, CA

Oh no! Unfortunately, we do not service your location yet.


Tap the target to detect your current location.

Lock Blog

A resource for consumers, locksmiths, and security professionals

Why Is My Push Button Door Lock Not Working?

by Ralph January 31, 2022

When a push button door lock is not working, you can rule out certain causes just by knowing more about your lock. So after you say, “My lock button won’t work,” you can know what to try first to fix your problem. But before you start troubleshooting, make sure you read closely.

The most common reasons for a push button door lock not working include:

  1. Energy
  2. The Lock
  3. Programming
  4. The Door


What is the most common reason a push button lock is not working?

If a push button door lock is not working, it is usually a result of neglect. Every type of lock breaks down with time and use. You can prolong the life of your locks and postpone the inevitable breakage with a proper lock maintenance regime.

Do different types of push button locks break differently?

For the most part, push button locks break in a few standard ways. The main variations are between electronic and manual locks. When you go to unlock a door without a keyhole when the push button is not working, there is a necessarily different approach.

Which type of push button lock doesn’t break?

Every lock will break eventually, but deadbolts are often more robust than door knobs. Before you replace a door knob with a deadbolt, understand that you are looking for a lock that uses thick metal components rather than plastic. The harder the metal, the slower it grinds down.

Can a locksmith fix a broken push button lock?

A locksmith is the best choice when a push button door lock is not working. You can use a home locksmith or a commercial locksmith depending on the type of building the lock is installed in. The setting the lock is used in determines certain things about the lock, so use the correct service.

How often do push button locks need maintenance?

The right time to perform lock maintenance is as soon as you notice an issue. Whether it is the lock sticking, the door not closing, the buttons getting harder to push, etc., take action immediately. Use a door lock lubricant, so the problem does not compound or worsen.

Types Of Push Button Locks

Why your push button door lock is not working can depend on the type of lock. How a lock is designed to function informs how it can become dysfunctional. With a door lock button not working, you have to know what can go wrong to troubleshoot what is going wrong.

Electronic Push Button Locks

Many modern push button locks use some form of electrical current, whether it is provided by a battery or hardwired into the building’s electrical. These locks have mechanical and electrical components, both of which can lead to a lock button not working.

Although electronic locks come in many styles, most will have a push button or keypad function. You may find a single door lock button not working, or perhaps several are unresponsive. This can make it impossible to open the lock or limit the lock’s functionality severely.

Mechanical Push Button Lock

Similar in appearance to its electronic counterpart, a mechanical push button lock can have a variety of housings with buttons that have a number or letter. The key difference is that a fully mechanical lock works without any electricity.

When you input the correct numerical or alphabetical sequence, pins are moved similar to a standard pin tumbler lock. All of the moving parts create more opportunities for something to break. Mechanical complexity results in a more difficult diagnosis of why your push button door lock is not working.

Privacy Push Button Lock

When some people refer to a push button door lock not working, they are looking to unlock a bathroom door. In this case, the lock is not designed for security. Instead, this simple lock is intended for use on interior doors to suggest the desire for privacy.

A privacy push button lock is technically a mechanical push button lock, but it is such a simplified version that it requires its own category. These locks are often extremely inexpensive, so with a privacy button door lock not working, it is often best just to get a new one.

1. Energy Interruption 

The Problem

A push button door lock not working can be caused by an energy interruption. This is common for electronic locks but does not affect any mechanical locks. Whether your lock is using batteries or is hardwired into a building, the electrical current can die or get interrupted.

Batteries dying is perhaps the most common reason for an electronic push button door lock not working. But short of a power outage affecting your security, hardwired electronic locks should not fail. Wires can fray, or the electronics can fail, but this will be covered in the damage section.

The Solution 

Start by changing the batteries on the lock. If the battery port is on the interior side of the door and you are locked out, there should still be an emergency battery connection port. The emergency port is often under a dust cover and requires a 9V battery for a temporary charge.

Similar to a car key not working after a battery change, this might not solve your issue. The energy interruption may be due to something more substantial. If sure up the connections and swap batteries and still your push button door lock is not working, continue to the lock damage section.

2. Lock Damage 

The Problem

Push button locks can break in countless ways. Whether it’s a specific lock button not working, a handle not turning, a stuck door latch, etc., something needs to be repaired or replaced. What you need is a diagnosis of what specifically is going wrong.

For electronic locks, you can use a voltmeter to check for damaged wires or components. For mechanical failures, the lock can be deconstructed and assessed for visibly broken, rusted, or malformed parts. Anything out of the ordinary might be responsible for a push button door lock not working.

The Solution 

Hopefully, the reason for the push button door lock not working is isolated to one replaceable part. For example, a mechanical push button lock may have an issue with one or more of the actuators. A wire could be frayed. An internal component may be rusted or corroded.

Find the problematic part and swap it out, mend it, or clean it as needed. If the damage is too extensive, the lock will need to be entirely replaced. For more options or help with diagnosis, contact a home locksmith or commercial locksmith, depending on the setting of the lock.

3. Reprogramming

The Problem

Though it may seem as though your push button door lock is not working, the lock could be functioning perfectly. There is a chance you are being given the false impression of the lock’s failure because the device has been reprogrammed. This cannot happen with privacy locks.

Reprogramming can happen accidentally when an electronic lock is unknowingly moved into its code reset state. Mechanical push button locks will not be accidentally reset, but if someone else is in charge of regulating a building’s physical access control, they may have changed it.

The Solution

The first step is to see if anyone has the new code. If no one has the code, you have to get on the interior side of the door to take the lock apart. You should be able to get the door open and remove the lock. With the lock removed, you can change the lock combination

There are override and factory reset protocols accessible as soon as the lock is uninstalled. For specific instructions on how to perform these resets, you will need the lock manual. Install your keypad lock again, and check to see if your push button door lock is not working still.

4. Door Alignment

The Problem

Even when a push button door lock not working seems to be caused by the lock, the door might be the culprit. Latches or deadbolts can catch on the strike plate, and either have trouble opening or locking. This catching is often caused by door misalignment.

Whether you have solid core doors or hollow core doors, the foundation can lift, or the hinges can sag, and it will seem like your push button door lock is not working. And in the case of electronic locks with motorized latch bolts, any misalignment can be enough resistance so the lock won’t open.

The Solution 

The most straightforward fix for a push button door lock not working due to alignment is to adjust the door strike plate. You can move the plate up, down, back, or forward as needed. If you have an adjustable strike plate, this makes the process much easier.

Other than the strike plate, you can also check on the door hinges. Tighten the set screws and see if this solves this issue of your push button door lock not working. Locksmiths can also pack your hinges to lift or lower the door without any re-drilling.

Final Thoughts

With your push button door lock not working, it may seem like there is no immediate solution. But a lock button not working may be easier to fix than you think. If you were not able to find your solution in this article, see if United Locksmith services your area.

If you would like to share your experience or ask a question, leave a comment below!

Category: Commercial, How To's, Residential

Need a locksmith?

Call us: (866) 338-9997