So, today instead I'll bring up something benign and of most worth locally, but which I've wanted to write about for a while, and this is as good a chance as any.
When I moved into my new home 2-1/2 months ago, a couple of things made me wary about the front door. The first is that while it had a great lock with a wonderful "snap" (that I love), it didn't seem to lock smoothly, which struck me as pretty important. Also, the door was set in a way that it swings closed and does so very fast, and then locks. As sure as the sun rises, I was absolutely certain I would lock myself out at some point. So, I made more spare keeps than usual and gave them to as many friends who live close by as possible.
The other day, the hinky front door got hinkier, and it became difficult to unlock. Not a good thing. Actually, it did unlock fine, just not smoothly, it became a two-handed job where you have to grab the handle and pull the door towards you, and turn the key at the same time. (I'm mentioned the door issue before closing escrow, but the inspector didn't seem to thing it was worth noting. Like a few other things I've had to repair.)
Though the door was passably okay, I thought it best to deal with it now, rather than later. And checked out Angie's List, which I haven't used much, but have had very good luck the couple times I have. And chalk up yet another.
If you live in Los Angeles, the fellow is David Leiderman at D Locks. Though he's based in the Valley, he'll go all over -- and as it happens, when I called he was in Santa Monica about 10 minutes away, and had just finished up his prior job. So, great timing.
He showed up fast, was very personable, explained everything well and in detail, has a great and wry sense of humor, and got it all fixed quickly and properly, at a very reasonable price. But the best thing is that I explained that I had another door issue -- that swinging shut fast thing. And even though it wasn't really a locksmith matter, other than the door locks when it closes, I said I wanted to at least mention it. And I'm glad I did, because it turned out he knew the issue and was able fixed it and in only about five minutes. At no charge.
(I had an odd moment a couple weeks later, when the lock wouldn't turn without much difficulty. David was very responsive, thought it was a minor, understandable issue that was explainable (short version, he thought it might be weather-related and described what why) but had an employee call me a few days later when he was in the area to come over. I wasn't going to be in then, so we put it off -- and the matter hasn't cropped up again in the past month. And all seems well.)
So, I now know of a very good locksmith if I need one. My only quibble is that he doesn't take credit cards, but that's not a deal-breaker. The wonderful service is what matters. And I like too that he's a licensed locksmith. So, if you're in L.A. and want to add a locksmith to your list of Home Service People to Call When In Need, you can find his website here, or call 818-209-0973. Or write David@Dlocks.net. Actually, it's worth checking out his website anyway, even if you don't need a locksmith right now or live in another city -- that's because he has a very information FAQ section with things to know about problematic locks and ways you might be able to fix some basic things on your own.
I've written about a few such business near me who provide great service at fair prices -- I write letters of complaint all the time, and I always figure that if I'm going to complain when things go wrong, I have a responsibility to praise those who do things right. So, I'm very happy to add one more to the book...
[UPDATE: It's come to my attention over time that many locksmiths have software that looks for blog articles across the country that mention locks or keys or locksmiths and then send out spam about their companies. I've tried to keep track of them and delete the postings, but some slip through the cracks and I don't get to them right away. So, the best I can do is leave this note with the admonition that if any of these companies spamming the site here are in your area, to know that they operate with abusive business practices, not the ideal foundation when looking for a locksmith.]