Disable Device (Dex; Armor Check Penalty; Trained Only)

Device Time Disable
1 round
Jam a lock
1d4 rounds
Sabotage a wagon wheel
2d4 rounds
Disarm a trap, reset a trap
2d4 rounds
Disarm a complex trap,
cleverly sabotage a clockwork device
* If you attempt to leave behind no trace of your tampering, add 5 to the DC.

You are skilled at disarming traps and opening locks. In addition, this skill lets you sabotage simple mechanical devices, such as catapults, wagon wheels, and doors.


When disarming a trap or other device, the Disable Device check is made secretly by the GM, so that you don't necessarily know whether you've succeeded.

The DC depends on how tricky the device is. If the check succeeds, you disable the device. If it fails by 4 or less, you have failed but can try again. If you fail by 5 or more, something goes wrong. If the device is a trap, you trigger it. If you're attempting some sort of sabotage, you think the device is disabled, but it still works normally.

You also can rig simple devices such as saddles or wagon wheels to work normally for a while and then fail or fall off some time later (usually after 1d4 rounds or minutes of use).

Open Locks
The DC for opening a lock depends on its quality. If you do not have a set of thieves' tools, these DCs increase by 10.

The amount of time needed to make a Disable Device check depends on the task, as noted above. Disabling a simple device takes 1 round and is a full-round action. A tricky or difficult device requires 1d4 or 2d4 rounds. Attempting to open a lock is a full-round action.

Try Again

Varies. You can retry checks made to disable traps if you miss the check by 4 or less. You can retry checks made to open locks.


If you have the Deft Hands feat, you get a bonus on Disable Device checks.

A rogue who beats a trap's DC by 10 or more can study the trap, figure out how it works, and bypass it without disarming it. A rogue can rig a trap so her allies can bypass it as well.


Characters with the trapfinding ability (like rogues) can disarm magic traps. A magic trap generally has a DC of 25 + the level of the spell used to create it.

The spells fire trap, glyph of warding, symbol, and teleportation circle also create traps that a rogue can disarm with a successful Disable Device check. Spike growth and spike stones, however, create magic hazards against which Disable Device checks do not succeed. See the individual spell descriptions for details.

Disable Device Skill Unlocks

Pathfinder Unchained
With the Signature Skill feat and sufficient ranks in Disable Device, you earn the following.

5 Ranks: Reduce the time required to disarm a trap or open a lock by taking a -5 penalty on your Disable Device check for each step by which you reduce the time required: 2d4 rounds, 1d4 rounds, 1 round, a standard action, a move action, a swift action.

10 Ranks: You can disarm magical traps at a -10 penalty even if you lack the trapfinding ability. If you possess the trapfinding ability, when attempting to disable magic traps, you never trigger them, even if you perform the trigger action (such as looking at a symbol). If you fail the check, you can still trigger the trap, and you can't use this ability to bypass it.

15 Ranks: When attacked by a trap, you can attempt a Disable Device check as an immediate action (adding your trap sense bonus, if any) opposed by the trap's attack roll or its save DC. If you succeed, you take half damage (or no damage if you exceed the DC by at least 10).

20 Ranks: You halve the penalties for performing a quick disarm as described in the 5 Ranks entry. If you possess the trapfinding ability and accept a -20 penalty while using the ability unlocked at 15 ranks, all nearby allies gain the benefit, and you disable the trap as an immediate action before it can trigger if you exceed the DC by at least 10.