What is a Maglock?
A maglock is an electrified locking device that uses low-voltage power to keep an entrance secure. Also referred to as an electromagnetic lock or magnetic lock, they consist of an electromagnet and an armature plate. The electromagnet mounts to the door frame, and gets wired back to a power supply, while the armature plate mounts to the door.
With power, the electromagnet is energized, creating a magnetic flux that attracts the armature plate. The result is a locking action, which causes the entrance to remain secure. Because the surface area is relatively large, the force created by the magnetic flux is strong enough to keep the door locked under stress.
When power is removed, the maglock releases, allowing the door to open. This setup is referred to as fail-safe, meaning that when power fails, the door allows for safe exit.
Maglocks are considered one of the most secure and reliable locks avaialable. They don’t rely on the door handle and do not have any moving parts, therefore making them ideal for high security applications.
Maglock Holding Force & Power
The metal plate in the maglock is surrounded by a coil of wires that can be magnetized. Therefore, more coils equals more holding force. Maglock holding force, or “strength”, is measured in hundreds of pounds. This describes the amount of pulling force it can withstand.
The strongest models are closer to 3000 pounds, while the lowest holding force is around 600 pounds. In general, most doors are secured with a 1200-1500 pound maglock.
Magnetic locks depend on constant power to remain secure. For this reason, they need a reliable power source. Most maglocks require a dedicated, individually fused, 12VDC or 24VAC power supply. The power supply needs to be hardwired into the buildings electrical system, typically 120VAC. Further, it’s also best to have the power supply on a dedicated electrical circuit, with it’s own breaker, and integrated into buildings backup generator.