Master Key Systems

We’re Your Local Master Key System Specialists

Shearline Locksmiths is a full-service locksmith in the Chicago, IL region, providing master key system installation, replacement, and repair. We have over a decade of locksmith experience and are licensed and trained, guaranteeing you a job done right the first time. We always use quality hardware and parts. Shearline Locksmiths offers emergency mobile locksmith service throughout Chicagoland, coming to you anytime you need us. Give us a call at 312-847-8366 today!

What is a Master Key System?

master keys on a keyring

A facilities manager will typically have a big keyring like this one with a different key for each door. When we install a master key system in your apartment complex, office building, school, or other commercial building that keyring can be reduced down to just a few master keys that allow easy access to many different door locks.

A master key system is a key system wherein there are levels of access, particularly in a commercial building, apartment complex, or school setting. There is one master key at the top that opens all locks, and then individual keys that have different levels of access for opening only one specific lock. This is particularly useful in a setting with many doors and users who have individual keys, and if a key is lost the master key can easily open that door. A master key system also means your maintenance staff and property managers only need to carry one key, versus a keychain full of single keys that only fit single locks. The fewer master keys created, the more secure the system. There can also be keys that are specific to specific types of locks, like cabinet locks or padlocks.

A master key cannot be easily copied, for security purposes. It can only be copied by the original key provider or manufacturer with the owner’s authorization. This is known as a restricted master key and offers extra security.

Master Key System Services

Shearline Locksmiths will assess your needs and install a master key system for any of your residential or commercial needs. Master key system services we provide include:

  • Restricted master key system – restricted keyways are patented and thus can’t be easily copied at a hardware store or commercial location, adding extra security as only the locksmith who creates the system can duplicate the key
  • Unrestricted master key system – unrestricted master keys are available for duplication when keying information is given to any locksmith and thus easily copied; while this is convenient, it makes them less secure than a restricted master key
  • LFIC (Large format interchangeable cores)/SFIC (Small format interchangeable cores) – instead of having to replace the entire lock, the business owner or manager can replace just the core in the cylinder
  • Master keying Schlage locks – Schlage locks have an excellent reputation, we use only the best hardware and can install a Schlage master key system
  • Master key system for a school – a master key system in a school setting increases security and convenience for administration and custodial
  • Master key system for apartment buildings – a landlord or apartment manager with one master key can access units for maintenance if needed, or help a tenant in a lockout situation
  • Master key system for a business – restricted keys keep ex-employees from copying keys and restrict access

We have rekey discount specials too, so call and ask for a quote today.

Call Us Today for A Master Key System

Whether you’re a homeowner, a landlord with an apartment building, or a business owner concerned about security, a master key system is an excellent and convenient option. For all your master key system needs in the Chicago, IL region, we are your professional, go-to locksmith. Give us a call today at (312) 847-8366 for your free estimate!

Master Key System FAQ

What is a master key system?

A master key system allows different keys to open specific locks, while a master key opens all locks. It’s often used in businesses or multi-unit buildings for tiered grouping and control of doors and locks. For example, you can give a user access to one office door or give a manager access to an entire floor.

Is there a difference between rekeying and master keying?

Yes, rekeying changes one or many locks to fit a single key, while master keying creates a system where individual user keys can open specific locks, but a master key can open multiple locks.

How does master keying work?

Master keying involves creating a master key chart. Based on the chart, the locks then get rekeyed in a specific configuration with bottom pins, top pins, and master wafer pins in the cylinder so it can be opened by its own individual key and a separate master key.

What are the benefits of master keying?

Master keying offers increased security and convenience, especially for property managers or business owners who need access to multiple rooms or buildings but don’t want to carry around a gigantic key ring.

Who can benefit from master keying service?

Property managers, business owners, schools, and landlords can all benefit from master key systems, as well as homeowners in the Chicago area with multiple properties.