Master Key System

Master Key System

Master Key System Introduction

A Master Key System is where a single key can unlock all the doors within a building. Cylinder locks are the best option for single or multiple key access with tiered levels of access. A basic system is where a single Master Key opens all cylinder locks. In addition, each door can be unlocked by its key, often referred to as the slave or differ key.

A Master Key System will allow you to create a suite of locks wth varying access levels for different key holders. For example, the master key will open all locks, whilst other keys will only open selected locks, depending on the access requirements.

High Security Custom Master Key Systems

With a patent protected key profile giving you control over who can get keys copied, this is a highly recommended solution for master-key systems.
If you're looking to build a master key system for external use or internal use where high security is required, these are the cylinders you need to be looking at for your master key system.
A significant advantage of these is the patent-protected key profile stopping users from getting ANY keys copied without your prior approval!

  • Patented key profile protects your key suite from copiers
  • TS007 Attack resistant high-security cylinders
  • Anti-Snap focus to make cylinder lock snapping a thing of the past
  • No more lock picking with Anti-Pick technology
  • Modular Steel Core adds Snap-Resistance

Our lock building experts have years of experience in hand-built locks to your specifications.

Landlords and Hotel owners

Having an effective master-key system in place is essential for productivity, ease of access, and ultimately peace of mind. For example, landlords and owners of HMO's want to unlock doors within properties without finding and carrying each key. Master keys give the freedom to always have access, without having to take bunches of keys, or worse, arriving to see you have brought the wrong key!

For Hotel or B&B owners, having the ability to distribute master keys to staff such as cleaners or maids to carry out routine cleaning or provide room service means that your team can be more efficient.

Our master key system comprises a rim night latch, complete with three unique keys. In addition, a cylinder pull for the outside, which surrounds the cylinder for a clean finish whilst providing finger-pull functionality to pull the door closed.

You can order one or as many master keys as you wish as part of your order.

Master Keyed Ultion Lock

Ultion Locks

The lock provided is an Ultion night latch. It comes with its relevant keep for the door frame and has a holdback snib to keep the door 'off the latch'. We've chosen the Ultion specifically due to its suitability as part of a master key system. It does not allow the occupant to deadlock the latch using the snib to prevent entry with the master key.

Ultion lock Cylinders

Ultion lock cylinders offer standard key operation, supplied with a set of three standard keys per lock. Each cylinder will have unique keys, whilst all of the master keys ordered will, of course, unlock each Ultion cylinder.

The Cylinder Pull

As a finishing touch, each kit comes with a cylinder pull to provide a clean finish around the cylinder whilst providing a means to close the door.

Master Keyed Door Lock and Handle Kit

Putting a master-key system in your property is simple.

If you're looking for a master key system for an office, B&B or HMO, the typical solution is a master-keyed cylinder suite. These can be supplied with lock cases and handles to suit public use requirements whilst offering the convenience of master keys to unlock every door.

Your master keyed cylinder has unique keys and a thumb turn to lock and unlock from the inside.

A minimum of one master key must be ordered per system. The lock cylinders are hand pinned so, allow extra time for your order to be completed.

If required, we supply fire-rated Grade 13 Stainless Steel ball-bearing hinges with three hinges per door pack.

Master Keyed Locks

The lock provided meets the relevant distance requirements of Disability Discrimination Act (DDA). The satin stainless steel forend faceplate gives a clean and simple finish to the edge of the door. The lock is fire-rated and supplied with a strike plate keep for the frame.

The stainless steel floating style handles are suitable for use in DDA applications and fire doors. They are provided with matching escutcheons for the euro cylinder to give a professional and clean finish.

The cylinders supplied are euro key and turn cylinders, allowing for key operation on the outside, with thumb turn operation on the inside for easy exit from locked rooms in an emergency.

Each lock cylinder has three keys to have a unique set of three keys per cylinder.

Budget Master Key Cylinder Suite

Ideal for low-risk interior applications, the one-star security cylinder offers a reasonable level of security. When the budget is a concern, the one-star range offers good protection at great prices.

All the cylinders in this section have three keys, but the master key will work on all of them.

This means that if you order three locks, you will have three locks all working with slave keys, and the master key will open all three. Purchase your master key separately with your lock order.

These systems are currently taking three weeks to build.


A Master Key suite is a state-of-the-art security system designed for your convenience. It gives designated key holders access to specific areas or buildings, and by restricting access through controlled measures, it increases the general security of a property.

A Master Key suite allows each lock to have its key, which will not operate any other lock; however, each lock also forms part of a more extensive set, allowing operation by a single key – the master key. What are the benefits? Controls security within one or more buildings as it gives designated individuals access to specific parts of a building, for example, different departments, private areas or delivery zones. It offers more convenience as individuals can have access using one key.

Grand Master Key

The Grand Master is the ‘ultimate’ key. It is the one that gives you full access throughout several buildings.

Master Key

The Master key is equally powerful, but it gives you full access throughout one building instead of many buildings.

Sub Master Key

The Sub Master gives designated individuals access to a specific section within a building, such as someone in charge of a department or warehouse.

Maintenance Keys

These keys restrict access to relevant areas only, ideal for cleaning, maintenance work and receiving deliveries.

Change Key

This key can open one lock, making it perfect for tenants, small shop owners or students.

Keyed alike Locks

Who would need a Master Key Suite?

It is perfect for anyone who has a property with many locks and wants to control the security and access with a minimal number of keys. It is ideal for commercial property owners, offices, schools, hotels, retail spaces or Property development owners. A smaller-scale option would be to use keyed alike locks.

Keyed alike locks are pinned to a key code. For example, you could have the same key to open both your front and back doors. You could have just one key to open the security shutters, padlocks and the front and rear doors.

Master Keyed

Imagine a block of ten flats with four offices, a toilet, staff room and various cupboards and boiler rooms. Each tenant has their own individual flat door key, which will not open any other lock in the suite. However, the owner or manager can have a master key that operates all of the locks in the suite.

The owner/manager needs to carry one key to access the whole site without sorting through 20 or 30 different keys every time they want to open a door. Other members of staff would have a key which only opens their office door.

You can mix keyed alike and master together so that the office staff have one key that opens all 4 of the offices but nowhere else.

Keyed to Common

In the above master suite, we can also have a common cylinder. This common lock could be fitted to the main entrance, toilet or staff room doors.

Every key in the system will open the common door allowing it to be locked while still allowing all of the staff and tenants to gain entry with their key.

Sub Master

It is also possible to have a sub master where every door has its lock and key, but a sub master key opens all maintenance cupboards, electric cupboards, boiler rooms etc. The cleaner could hold this key, allowing them access to those areas when needed, not opening any other doors. The managers master key will still open all of these doors.

There are many other ways of mixing and matching master key suites.

You can purchase our master key locks from the web shop or contact us to discuss your plan.

Master Key Suites

Create a convenient way to access numerous doors without having to carry all the individual keys.

It is possible to have various key levels (sub-masters) within a master key suite. For example, you could introduce sub-master keys which would control a specific area, i.e. four different buildings could use a sub-master key for each building, with a grandmaster key that opens all locks in all four buildings.

Sub Master Key Suites

Multiple keys can open one lock, a popular setup with landlords who own a block of flats. With this master key suite, tenants do not need to carry a key for the front door and their flat door key.

The tenants can carry their flat key, which will also allow access through the main entrance door. Landlords would hold the master key to access the front door entrance and all the flats when required. See the example to the left for a typical design layout for this style of a suite. We build master suites to your job specification.

Contact us to discuss your project, and we will work with you to create a master key suite that is perfectly designed to your requirements at a competitive price and delivered quickly.

A landlord wants a master key to open all the locks and ensure that the tenant has a unique key unique to their door. Very often, the Landlord will also have a Cylinder Lock fitted to the main entrance.

The door cylinder lock, opened by the Master Key and each of the tenant's keys, is a common entrance. Whilst this is not recommended, it is by far the most convenient Master Key System for landlords.

Euro Cylinder Locks Euro Cylinder lock Master Key Systems are, in most circumstances, commissioned for convenient access whilst being able to work with a more complex Master Key System and limit access to individual key holders.

All of this is possible because of the unique design of door cylinder locks developed over many decades and re-engineered in recent years to tolerances that allow them to be Master Keyed.

Before designing a Master Key System, carefully think about what is required of the system by the Master Key Holder and the other users whilst allowing for expansion.

The starting point for this process is to determine how many doors there are that will require cylinder locks and how many extra locks over the forecast life of the Master Key Suite. A basic Master Key System Planner is available on our website. If something more complex is required, then MKS have a range of Excel charts to suit all types of Master Key Systems, however complex.

Decide on the level of access. For example, you may require some doors to be opened by more than one user but exclude others from individual key holders or Sub Master Keyholders.

SheffLOCK Ltd
Unit 6 Niagara Works
Niagara Road
South Yorkshire.
S6 1LU
Call: (0114) 442 6200

Which? Trusted Trader   payment methods   Consumer Protection Association

SheffLOCK®Ltd Company No 10453258 ©2023