How to open a safe without key and combination?

If you are reading this article, it’s safe to assume that you have forgotten the combination to your safe or you have misplaced the safe’s keys. Getting a replacement or paying a locksmith for opening the safe maybe a little too expensive.

That is why in this article we are going to go through the various ways you could open the safe. Some of the methods mentioned here will require a great deal of patience and persistence on your part. But we can assure you that in the end, it would have totally worth the effort. So here are the ways for opening a safe without key and combination.

how to open a safe without key

Try to find a replacement key or combination

Before trying to break the safe open, you should ask the manufacturers to provide you with a replacement key or a replacement combination for your safe.

Find the owner’s manual and look at the back of it. There should be a serial number and a model number of the safe. Note those numbers down.

Then, go to the website of the manufacturing company and provide them with the numbers and your email address. It should cost you about $20 to $50 to get a replacement key or a combination.

In case getting a replacement is not a viable option for you. Here are the methods you could use to crack the safe open.

Cracking the safe open

If you have forgotten the combination, then the best method for opening the safe would be to crack it open instead of breaking it. Here’s how you can crack open a safe:

Learn about how the lock’s mechanism:

  • Combination dial: Almost all kinds of safes have a combination dial on the front. This circular dial can be spun to enter the combination code. It has numbers and dashes around its enclosing boundary. It goes from 0 to 100. If you can guess the combination, you won’t need to break it open.
  • The spindle and drive cam: The dial is connected to a cylinder. As you keep moving the dial the spindle also rotates.

The drive cam is located just opposite of the dial. It’s connected to the spindle and it also rotates as the spindle moves.

  • The wheels: There are circular tumblers that are placed around the spindle. They are not connected to the spindle. The number of wheels plays a vital role in figuring out the combination of the safe. This is because the number of wheels in the safe is equal to the number of combinations that needed for unlocking it.
  • Wheel’s mechanism: Each of the wheels has notches. All the wheels are connected to each other via these notches. It basically works like clockwork.

Find the length of the combination

  • Rotate the dial: First of all, you have to keep rotating the dial many times over. After doing this for some time the wheels will be disengaged.
  • Use a stethoscope: Yes, you have read it right. You will need to use a stethoscope just like they do in the movies while cracking a safe open. By using a stethoscope, you will be able to listen to any kind of clicks or sounds made inside of the safe.

Move the bell end of the stethoscope around the surface of the safe to and only stop when you can easily hear the sounds coming out from inside the safe. This technique is perfect for implementing metal safes and they are more audible.

  • Rotate the dial to the left: Slowly rotate the dial counterclockwise and listen. Keep rotating until you hear two clicks. One is more audible than the other.  
  • Reset and repeat: After hearing two clicks you must reset the lock by rotating the dial for many revolutions. Then, you must listen for two clicks again as you spin the dial to the left side.

Keep repeating this process until you have narrowed down the clicks to a specific location of the dial.

  • Do a 180-degree spin: After finding the contact area, rotate the dial to the exact opposite direction of the contact area.
  • Rotate clockwise: Now turn the dial towards the clockwise direction and carefully listen for any clicks especially when you pass the contact region. You should be hearing a click the first time you go around that region.
  • Start counting the number of clicks: You should count the number of clicks when you go through the contact region. If you encounter any clicks in another region that would mean that you have made some kind of mistake.

If, you believe you have made a mistake then reset the lock and start from the beginning.

  • Take notes on the number the clicks: When even after spinning past the contact area you do not hear any clicks that would mean that your work is done.

Now note down the number of clicks that you have counted. This number is the length of your combination.

Figuring out the combination number

Guess the correct combination is a tough task. But, you must be persistent about it. By following the following process, you should be able to find the combination of your safe.

  • Use a line graph with an x and y-axis. This is the best method for taking notes regarding the combinations.
  • Now label each of the axis with numbers spanning from 0 to 10.
  • Reset the lock by rotating the dial for a few revolutions.
  • Now rotate counterclockwise and carefully listen for clicks.
  • If you hear two clicks consecutively note that down on the graph.
  • The X-axis will have the value of the first click and the y-axis will contain the value of the second click.
  • Now reset the dial and this time don’t start from zero. Start from 3.
  • Repeat the above-mentioned process.
  • Find the clicks and plot them in the graph. You will be getting new values on the y-axis.
  • Reset it again and this time start from 6.
  • Keeping doing this until the graph is filled up.
  • Find the points where the y values converge.
  • Write down their x values as well.

Test out the combinations

Now that you have guessed some possible combinations it’s time to test them out. Your next steps are as follows:

  • Write down all the possible combinations of the numbers that you had written down.
  • Attempt all the combinations that you have written down.
  • Check to see if the door has been unlocked after each of your attempts.
  • If all of the numbers do not match, then try some numbers that are close to the combinations that you had written down.
  • If even that fails, that would mean that you have made a mistake while going through the steps, and you should start from the very beginning.
  • Remember patience is the key here.

Breaking the safe open

If all else fails, you have no other choice but to break the safe open to get your valuables out. Although we will suggest you to avoid going with that option, here are the ways you can break the safe:

  • Drilling: If the safe is not reinforced with copper plating then you will be able to burrow into it by using your drill. Only use a drill if you are confident about your skills in drilling.
  • Cutting: You could also use a cutting torch or a burner bar to cut open the safe. Most of the safes available in the market do not feature steel alloys or ball bearings. This leaves them vulnerable to cutting tools.
  • Dropping it down: Although this is not the ideal way to open your safe, you should be able to break the safe by taking it to a higher level and dropping it to the ground multiple times. This should be your last resort, as dropping the safe could damage the things that are stored inside the safe.

Final words

We hope that after reading all the methods mentioned above, you have gained a clear understanding of the ways that you could open your safe without any key or combination.

You should remember that our article is supposed to help you find a way to crack open a safe that you own. Never try to open a safe that does not belong to you, as that would be against the law.

 Ideally, you should opt for getting a replacement for the combination. If that is not possible that go with one of the methods that we have described.

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