Are Magnetic or Electric Locks Better for Commercial Properties?

Are Magnetic or Electric Locks Better for Commercial Properties

When it comes to maintaining a commercial property, there are many different kinds of locks to consider. You could go with old-fashioned, traditional, physical keys, but those can be difficult to work with as they go missing, and when tenants move out you need to spend time and money creating new locks and keys. The way forward is with electric and magnetic locks. Learn more about each kind of useful security system below to decide which is the best choice for your commercial properties.

What’s the Difference between Electric and Magnetic Locks?

Magnetic locks, also known as “mag locks,” use an electromagnet to secure doors. The magnet attaches to the door frame and a metal armature plate, and it relies on a low voltage to keep the door locked and unlocked via the swipe of a key card that also has a magnet in it.

Also known as “electric strikes,” electric locks are electromechanical devices that work best when combined with other security devices, such as panic bars and lock sets. These function off of electrical power, which is channeled to the strike, keeping the latch or lock bolt in place. This maintains a locked door until a release system (code/pin, key, computerized message) is sent.

What are the Pros and Cons of Magnetic Locks?

Mag locks have many upsides: they are durable and can last for a long time, can be mounted on all kinds of doors, and require less cutting of the door frame during installation. They also are cheaper over time as you won’t have to cut new physical keys. However, they also have some downside: fire code officials do not favor this kind of lock because it is purely electrical in nature, meaning if the power goes out during a fire getting through certain doors will be more difficult. These mag locks also rely on physical cards or fobs, and losing those can spell inconvenience. Finally, depending on the strength and number of mag locks needed, the price tag can add up for these security systems.

What are the Pros and Cons of Electric Locks?

Electric locks have a number of advantages. They are preferred by fire code officials because they can still operate with the mechanical release of a push bar. This means, if properly put together, the door can still operate even in the event of a power outage. And as with mag locks, this expense pays for itself over time as you don’t have to cut new keys. Nonetheless, there are some disadvantages as well. Like with mag locks, fobs may be lost, which is why a keypad may be preferable. These can also be difficult to install if you have aluminum doors as the nature of the lock requires thicker installation mediums. These are also more mechanically complex than mag locks, which means if installed on your own without professional help you may be subject to user errors.

Deciding between electric and mag locks for your facility or property? The Security Professionals are authorized to install both kinds of locks, and we can help you decide which is the better pick for your work. Get in touch to learn more, request a quote, and hear our professional advice.

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