What Are Kwikset Smart Keys? How Do Kwikset Smart Keys Work?

How Do Kwikset Smart Keys Work? – Complete Guides

Kwikset has created a truly extraordinary security lock, which can block almost any typical prying tactics, offering great protection to your house.

It sometimes may be hard to understand the mechanism and features of a modern gadget, and this lock is no different. Without a good understanding of your lock, you may struggle to program new keys.

How Do Kwikset Smart Keys Work

How do Kwikset smart keys work? We’re here to answer this question and provide you with a guide to reset and rekey your keys. Let’s start!

What Is A Kwikset Smart Key?

The SmartKey is a wafer lock that is user-rekeyable and a product of Weiser (Canada) and Kwikset. It utilizes five wafers interacting with a sidebar to protect the lock from key pumping and lockpicking.

This model comes in place to relieve the costs and stress resulting from spending on door lock rekeying services.

SmartKey’s exceptional design offers advanced security while taking minimal effort and time to rekey or reset. You may not believe it as it sounds unbelievably straightforward, but it is!

You can identify SmartKeys by looking for the tiny rectangular hole on the left side of the keyway.

How Do Kwikset Smart Keys Work?

How Do Kwikset Smart Keys Work

Kwikset keys are extremely durable, thanks to advanced features. (Rawpixel)

The lock consists of six depth increments (including the depth and height of the valleys and mountains on the key) and five pins.

Homeowners can reprogram the locks by putting the previous key into the lock, then inserting a specific tool into a hole on the lock’s surface.

This act will move the back about ⅛ inch and separate the slider and pins, holding them apart when the homeowner inserts the new key.

After that, the lock will register the mold on that new key, resetting the connection between the slider and pins to engage with the new key.

The SmartKey is the brand’s solution to the public’s frenzy of key pumping, particularly to cope with the conventional pin tumbler cylinder’s weaknesses.

Its rekey technology outperforms other smart keys and has taken the lead in control security, thanks to the below enhancements:

  • Great drill resistance

Kwikset smart lock cylinder utilizes two balls in the key’s front face, providing extra resistance to attacks from intruders or drilling.

If you’re concerned about the quality, don’t worry, as the American National Standards Institution has certified the deadbolt found in Kwikset’s lock as the best residential security.

  • Bump guard protection:

The brand integrates the patented technology into its products, which can replace the traditional tumbler and pin design and ensure lock bumping prevention.

  • Outstanding pick-resistance

Those locks have gone through the strictest lockpicking test – par. 11.6, UL 437.

Despite the success in offering resistance to lockpicking and bumping, SmartKey’s weaknesses in the design can still make it vulnerable to attacks.

How To Use a Kwikset Smart Key?

You may think that it is tricky to use such a modern, functional key and requires technical knowledge of rekeying and locking technology.

Yet, that doesn’t go for this model. We’ll show you the easy steps.

Rekey Kwikset Smart Keys

How Do Kwikset Smart Keys Work

Unlike many people think, rekeying smart keys is straightforward. (Max Pixel)

One of the advantages of the SmartKey technology is that the rekeying process is effortless. You just need the following components to do the job:

  • SmartKey tool
  • New key
  • The original key

With these three kits on hand, follow the below steps to reprogram your lock:

  • Put your lock’s original key into the keyway and twist it clockwise at a 90-degree angle. Don’t remove it right away.
  • Maintain the previous kit’s position inside the keyway while inserting the prepared tool into your lock’s keyhole.
  • After that, remove the tool and previous kit to reset your lock. Remember not to turn the kit back to its previous position before getting it out.
  • Program the new kit by putting it into your lock and twisting it counterclockwise – 180 degrees.
  • Twist it again clockwise to its original position (90 degrees). Now, you can remove it to finish the rekeying task.

Reset Kwikset Smart Keys

How Do Kwikset Smart Keys Work

Resetting a smart key needs the help of some specific tools. (Pixabay)

Similarly, prepare necessary tools and kits for this job first:

  • Replacement key
  • Security cylinder
  • SmartKey tool
  • Reset cradle

Here’s how to reset your Kwikset stuff with a specific reset cradle:

  • Detach the cylinder unit or tumbler from your door lock.
  • Detach the clip holding the inner cylinder.
  • Take the inner cylinder out from the tumbler.
  • Twist the second dial toward the right using your reset cradle to align the arrow and the starting point.
  • Put the tumbler into your reset cradle. Then, twist the second dial toward the left using the cradle to meet the arrows.
  • Put the SmartKey kit into the designated keyhole and push it in until it makes a ‘click’ sound.
  • Remove it and insert a new key that you intend to use. Hold it there and gently push the tumbler out from the reset cradle.
  • Twist it clockwise at a 90-degree angle to return it to the original position. Then, remove the new kit.
  • Finally, secure the tumble back to your lock.

Can I Reset Kwikset Smart Keys Without A Key?

Yes, you can use a resetting kit instead of the missing operating kit. Using an SC1 tool or a reset cradle depends on your SmartKey’s version.

With a reset cradle, you just need a new kit that you intend to replace the old one with and a specific SmartKey tool. Meanwhile, with an SC1 tool, you’ll need to prepare blank keys.

If you need more instructions on this job, check out this tutorial video:


What if you don’t have any resetting kit around either? Can you still reprogram your smart keys?

In this case, we advise you to take your deadbolt to a reliable locksmith. Without a resetting kit, you’ll need to disassemble the cylinder.

If you don’t have experience in this task, you may risk damaging your expensive lock.

Bottom Line

Remember that SmartKeys is different from other regular modern locks that run remotely or electronically.

These locks are relatively similar to the traditional models functioning primarily through the physical keys and keyhole.

It’s important to understand, ‘how do Kwikset smart keys work?’ to avoid damaging your door lock permanently!

Rate this post