Is It Possible To Open Combination Lock Without code?

Have you forgotten the code to the combination lock? Wondering if you’ll have to cut through the whole thing?

Well, I have some good news for you: it’s possible to open your combination lock without the code.

Combination locks have become quite popular in most establishments such as in school, banks and even at home to store your valuables.

It isn’t uncommon to forget your code from time to time. However, here are some possible alternatives to open your lock without having the code.

NOTE: Before trying any of these options, check to see if your lock is still under warranty. If so then you can access free professional help from the manufacturer to open the lock at no cost!

Let’s begin:

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Manual Safe Cracking

This is also known as Lock Manipulation. It is one of the most preferred and most intensive methods used to open your lock without causing any irreparable damage to it. With this approach, you are assured that the safe will continue working same as before, even after it is unlocked.

This involves a combination of the sound and feel sense which is used to identify the locks' combination digit by digit. All locks have a sort of vibration or sound produced when the dial hits the right number in the sequence of the code.

Stethoscopes are at times used in this method, and I’m sure you have seen this in most movies. But unlike movies, this is a very time-consuming process that could take hours and only those who have developed this skill over years of practice can achieve in a matter of minutes.

Auto Dealers

These devices work similarly to the manual cracking described in the first method. They usually go through thousands or more combinations and can provide the right combination in minutes to about 24 hours, depending on lock complexity.

These devices are made specifically to a particular lock type, so knowing your type of lock is very important. Companies such as Lockmasters Inc. have produced two auto dialing devices for three digit combination locks, and these are available in the market.

There are more modern versions of auto dialers known as computerized auto-dialers, e.g., Cygnus. This version is superior in the fact that it is highly sensitive to the locks' mechanical feel and uses the computer to make probable deductions just like a man would while manually safe cracking.


This method is the most preferred for unlocking safe combination locks since it is faster and after drilling most safes can be easily repaired and put back to use. A small hole is drilled into the safe after which an instrument specifically designed to view the inside of the lock is fitted into that hole.

This allows one to see the locks' inside mechanism and from there he can deduce how to open it. This is mostly by aligning the lock gates which causes the fence to fall disengaging the bolt.

Some manufacturers give drill-point diagrams for their safe brands though these are mostly available to them and locksmiths. These drill points can either be behind, at the top or sides of the safe, however for most safes it is usually close to the dials axis on the combination lock.

It may sound simple however more modifications are being made to safe locks to make sure they are designed with hard plates impermeable to all drills bits except tungsten-carbide and diamond cast drill-bits and even glass re-lockers placed between the combination lock and safe door that block primary bolt disengagement once the drill breaks the glass.


This method is similar to drilling however it is used In the case of safes designed with hard plates and glass re-lockers. The difference is, a borescope is put into the hole to give probable ideas on how to open the lock.

Here the scope is used to make observations on the change-key-hole as the dial is spun to deduce any wheel pack landmarks that will lead to the combination lock. Once these markers are noted, it is easy to enter the right combination.

It is also very efficient and should cause minimal damage to your safe allowing you to repair and put it back to use.

X-ray radiation

This can be used to view the internal structure of the mechanism of the lock. It is used to read the wheels and come up with the combination.

However, some safes are made from materials impermeable to X-rays such as nylon and even lead shield plates above to locks too, i.e., Chubb Manifoil Mk4 combination locks.

Contact Manufacturer

Note down the serial number of your lock. Most have it stamped on it however others may lack it. Take the number to the brand distributor who should help you acquire a combination by contacting the manufacturer.

Note that you must be validated as the owner of the lock before any help is given and this may be a long process involving submission of a notarized ownership document.

If the lock isn’t yours, i.e., in school, you can also provide the admin with the serial number. They usually have a combination list corresponding to the serial numbers.

Most of the stated methods result in little or no damage to lock making it easily repairable. The next methods, however, may lead to the complete damage of your lock.


With this method, the door and bolt works of the safes' door frame are pried out. It requires a lot of time, effort and pressure and inevitably damages your safe.

It the oldest and also the least effective m​​​​ethod.


This is usually the last resort when it comes to opening a lock combination. It can involve Torching. This cuts through the safes lock by utilizing thermal lances and plasma cutters that will burn up to 4000 degrees Fahrenheit.

It can also involve sawing, which cuts through the lock, however, you may have to go through some saw blades first.

What makes it less appealing other than the fact that it causes irreparable damage is that it is time-consuming, messy and noisy.

Final Thoughts

Opening a combination lock without a code is certainly not as easy as is depicted in movies. Mostly you will need the help of a professional locksmith especially in the case of modern crack proof lock designs.

Make sure you have noted the combination lock size, model number, manufacturer and any other tags present on its surface since this information will make it faster to pinpoint which method will be most efficient and quick when opening the lock.

You can also read this: How Do Wheel Locks Work?

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