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It’s a horrible feeling. You go to open your car door or the door to your house, and then search your pockets frantically, only to discover the keys are in the worst possible place – inside the car or house. It’s official. You’re locked out.

Luckily all hope is not lost. In most cities, you can call a locksmith pretty much 24 hours a day in an emergency, and they’ll come to your rescue. Of course, there’s a pretty steep fee for making them come out to your home or car in the middle of the night, but it’s still better than standing out in the cold trying to unlock your car door with a wire coat hanger or squeeze yourself through the doggy door to get into your house. A good locksmith can usually get you back inside within a few minutes, at most. In fact, most are so fast and make it look so easy, it’ll leave you wondering why you don’t take up locksmithing, too. It might also make you question the true security of your vehicle or home.

But opening locked doors is really only part of what locksmiths do. Locksmiths are also the people you call when you need every lock in your office re-keyed after the employee you fired swore he would come back and steal every computer in the office. Or when you get tired of fumbling through a keychain full of different keys to different doors in your home every time you want to open your front door, and you decide to have them all keyed with the same key. Locksmiths can even change the combination on your safe when you realize you gave it to your ex-boyfriend before he was your ex. Of course, they can also come out and install locks and deadbolts for you, if you’re not the handy type. They can even come out and make a key to fit that creepy door in your house that no one can open because no one has the key, and then make a copy for everyone in the house.

So, while locksmiths are probably the first person you think of when you’re standing out in the rain staring into your car at the set of keys laying on the seat, they really are much more than just a rescue service. Anytime you need something done that has anything at all to do with locks, and you want to make sure it’s done right, it’s probably best to leave it to the professionals.

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