Master lock key box won't close. Help!
September 5, 2017 11:11 PM   Subscribe

I am looking after my neighbour's cat. They have a Masterlock key box (like the kind real estate agents use--the model number is worn off) and when I went over tonight, I entered the code, opened the box, took out the keys, did all the cat stuff. Then when I put the keys back and tried to close the lock box, it WOULD. NOT. CLOSE. It won't latch shut again. I googled and can find lots of stuff on how to break into one of these puppies but nothing on what to do if it won't close. I've just taken the keys home with me for now, but I'd like to make my neighbour's lock box work again if possible. Any ideas?
posted by hurdy gurdy girl to Home & Garden (12 answers total)
I am SURE you tried this and it is something weirder, but in the event you are like the one piano tuner I had come to my house who couldn't figure this out and panicked: on mine it won't latch unless you spin the combination around to something random first before you shut it.
posted by charmedimsure at 11:14 PM on September 5, 2017

Hmm, sorry, I should clarify--it's the type where you press buttons on a pin pad type setup, not the kind with a spin lock.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 11:22 PM on September 5, 2017

To narrow things down, have you used the box successfully before? As in, did it break/malfunction today for sure or is it possible there's some weird trick to it you haven't found?

I've definitely run into this problem, but I think it was one of the spin lock ones and I'm sure I eventually stumbled into charmedimsure's solution.
posted by hoyland at 11:28 PM on September 5, 2017

Try entering the code on the open box before attempting to close the lock box. Some combination lock latches won't operate if the code is partially entered.
posted by Mitheral at 11:33 PM on September 5, 2017 [2 favorites]

This is the first time I've used the lock box--first time I've looked after this neighbour's cat. Sooooo I don't know if it malfunctions regularly though I imagine they would have told me if it did.

I suspect Mitheral is right and the code needs to be entered again, but part of the problem is I can't access the code buttons at all, because the black cover is stuck to the button pad :( I'm afraid to yank it too hard in case I break it!
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 11:40 PM on September 5, 2017

If this is your first time, I have these boxes are they are a little tricky - you have to press the buttons for the code, hold the top button (which pulls back the latch), tip the bottom end in first and (while still holding down the button) tip the top into place and release. If the latch isn't retracting when you push the buttons, try to clear it again. If it isn't fitting into the box, make sure the keys are tucked in the center and not catching.
posted by metahawk at 11:42 PM on September 5, 2017 [1 favorite]

Hmm, not seen any black cover. Maybe a photo would help us troubleshoot?
posted by metahawk at 11:44 PM on September 5, 2017

It's so weird that you had this problem because I HAD THIS PROBLEM TODAY! (My mom is in the hospital, I was in town for a few weeks attending to her, and before I flew out, I wanted to make sure the key was still in the box from the time last month a friend needed to use it.) I opened it without trouble, following the instructo-pics, but then figured it would snap closed again.

For me, what I had to do, was follow the exact procedure I used for opening it. I had to:

1) Push the button on the bottom (below the keypad)
2) Enter the code again
3) Push the button on the top (above the keypad)

and then

4) Snap the keypad door closed (to hide the key)
5) Snap the black door/cover

I'm short, but it took some finagling to get down below enough to push upward on the keypad screen to get it unstuck from the door/cover so I could actually push all the buttons. It sounds like the ones Metahawk knows are a teensy bit different from the one I used today, so maybe try a combo of efforts?
posted by The Wrong Kind of Cheese at 12:10 AM on September 6, 2017 [2 favorites]

Success! Mr hgg went to look at the lockbox and (he is less cautious than I) gave the cover a firm yank, and separated it from the button keypad. They were just stuck together. Then, as others suspected, I had to enter the code again to get it to close. Whew!

(That is weird synchronicity, The Wrong Kind of Cheese...I'm glad you got it unstuck.)

Thanks, all! Who knew these things came in such a variety of flavours that all seem to be a slight pain in the ass.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 12:49 AM on September 6, 2017 [5 favorites]

Any information on what model this is?

I now know I need one of these things, and foreknowledge of operating issues is always handy.
posted by ArgentCorvid at 7:31 AM on September 6, 2017

Hi Agent Corvid, it appears to be this one, the Master Lock Wall Mount Push Button Lock Box. Once I figured out how to work it, it was fine--gave me no problems when I went over this morning.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 11:34 AM on September 6, 2017

ArgentCorvid, I have several of the spin-lock Masterlock brand ones, and I've never had this problem.
posted by ananci at 2:08 PM on September 6, 2017

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