Should I Use Electric Strikes or Magnetic Locks for Access Control? 7

Magnetic Locks

Magnetic Door Lock (image from Wikipedia)
Magnetic Door Lock (image from Wikipedia)

Magnetic door locks, are good for local, low-risk security applications such as indoor closets where occupants are stationed in the vicinity, or they fall within the perimeter of a more tightly secured area.

Here’s why.  Magnetic door locks require a constantly available source of power.  If power is lost, the magnet will not work.  Therefore, entry into the secure area is available to mischief-makers and anyone else.

Battery backup is available in power supply boxes, but they have to be checked often and replaced regularly.  Batteries may not hold power over an extended period of time if the power goes out.  Over a weekend, an occupied building may be much less secure if the power has been out for 48 hours.


Electric Strikes

Electric Door Strike Example
Electric Door Strike (image from

A better solution for door security hardware during a power outage is to use electric strikes.  An electric strike is a mechanically operated strike that releases a door when the mechanical part is activated.  Activation occurs either with the pressing of a panic bar from inside the building or when activated by an electronic controller outside the building with a card reader or other type of access control device.

If power goes out, the magnetic lock will not work.  Without an electronic strike, entry to the building is as easy as simply opening the door.  Add an electronic strike to the secure door, and even when the power goes out, the door is still secure.

What about exiting when the power goes out?  Will I be trapped inside?  No problem.  Even though the electronic strike is in a secure position when the power goes out, remember that pressing the panic bar also activates it so that the door will release.

What about exiting when the power is on when there is a magnetic lock on the door?  Access controlled doors which have both an electronic strike and a magnetic lock should be outfitted with a request-to-exit button inside the building.  These are often referred to as RTX or RTE buttons.  These, along with the person pressing the panic bar on the way out, allow for safe and easy exit when the power is on.

The best access control setup is to have both magnetic locks and electronic strikes on exterior doors, especially those that are used for entrances.  On interior doors, it is not as important to have both.  Generally, a magnetic lock and RTE inside the closet or room, suffices for interior door security, as long as there is some form of monitoring by employees or security personnel during power shutdowns.


Visual Learner?  Alright, here’s a video demonstration of magnetic locks and electric door strikes.  Good info Travis!


  1. Appreciate this post. Let me try it out.|

  2. Thanks for the good writeup. It in truth was once a amusement account it.
    Look advanced to more introduced agreeable from you!
    However, how could we communicate?

  3. What’s up, its nice post regarding media print,
    we all be aware of media is a wonderful source of data.

  4. As such, it shouldn’t be too difficult to spend some time constructing a database of tables
    along the lines of what is suggested at where they’ve got provided
    a sample database spec for usage in a college accommodation reservation
    application. s no secret that illegal file sharing continues to be rampant in numerous countries,
    such as US, however, it may not be government interference that eventually leads towards
    the end with the age of illegal downloads. Typically, the My
    Documents folder will be the best you to definitely use.

  5. Usually I do not read article on blogs, however I would like to say that this write-up very compelled me to check out and do it! Your writing taste has been surprised me. Thank you, quite great post.

  6. I often find it upsetting when people pretend to know what they are talking and feel the need to share their misinformation with the world. Very little of the information in this blog is accurate. The parts that are correct are so poorly worded that they appear incorrect.
    And that was the best picture of an electric strike you could find!?


    I am a certified master locksmith with over 35 years of experience in the security field including CCTV, Access control, alarms systems and physical security.

  7. Both are good options. you did a great job on both types.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Call Now Button

Add address