How Do You Use a Combination Lock?

To use a combination lock, identify the parts, turn the dial, match the numbers, and open the lock. These instructions are for a common Masterlock. Other locks work in the same manner, but their dials may need to be turned with a different a number of turns in different directions.

  1. Identify the parts of the lock

    A combination lock has two main parts: the dial and the indicator. The indicator is at the 12-o’clock position. A standard combination lock also has a shackle, which can be secured onto a locker or another object. A combination lock that is attached to a safe has a handle that is used to open the door.

  2. Enter the combination

    A Masterlock combination lock has three numbers in its sequence. Turn the dial three times to the right and stop on the first number, aligning it with the indicator at the top. Turn the dial to the left, pass the first number once, and stop on the second number so that it aligns with the indicator. Turn the dial to the right, and stop when the third number is aligned with the indicator.

  3. Open the lock

    To open a Masterlock combination lock, pull up on the shackle, or pull down on the body. If you are trying to open a safe, turn the handle up or down to open the door.