Electric strike and electromagnetic locks are popular and cost-effective security solutions today. They contribute a lot to keep us safe and secure while performing our day-to-day activities. In this article, we will help you understand the key differences between an electric strike and magnetic locks. Scroll down further to know more!

Let’s start with the basics

What is Electromagnetic Lock?


An electromagnetic lock is a highly secure and reliable security device used widely in hotels, offices, and residential facilities.

It uses an electric current to produce the magnetic force that enables the door to withstand a certain level of pressure if someone tries to force open it without proper access. Popularly, system designers also term electromagnetic locks as Mag locks.

How Does it Work?


Mag locks work on the key principles of electromagnetism. It consists of an electromagnet and an armature metal plate. The electromagnetic part of the lock is installed on the door frame and the armature plate is attached to the door. When a current is passed, both components come in contact and locks the door.

Scientifically, the magnetic flux created between the electromagnet and armature metal plate produces a retention force (greater than 9000 pounds) that keeps the door locked, no matter how hard someone tries to unlock it without proper access. The door only unlocks when the power is cut or interrupted.

Maglocks are typically fail-safe devices, meaning they need the power to lock the door. If the power supply is lost or disrupted for any possible reason, the doors with electromagnetic locks will become unlocked. Here an access reader is used to cut power from the electromagnet and release the lock

Advantages of Mag Locks

  • One can multiply the retention force between the electromagnet and metal armature plate by increasing the current.
  • Easy to install on doors and can be paired with any electrical signalling method (swipe card, biometric, access card reader) for solid access control.
  • You can unlock the lock easily in case of an emergency

Disadvantages of Mag Locks

  • Rely on continuous electricity consumption to function properly and thus expensive to maintain
  • Need a battery backup to avoid potential security during a power cut or outage

What is an Electric Strike?


An electric strike is an efficient and responsive alternative to conventional door strikes. It is used widely in commercial buildings, technology centers, warehouses, banks, stairwells, and hotel rooms. Installing this security device on your door is easy, low-cost, convenient, and highly secure.

How Does it Work?


Electric strike utilizes electromechanical door locking mechanisms to function properly. It is an upgraded version of traditional strikes and comes with an energized strike, motor, and a latch.

When triggered, the motor signals the electric strike to release the locked latch and unlocks the door. This can be done with the help of an electronic card reader, keypad, keyfob, and a wireless sensor.

It is a fail-secure device, meaning if the power is lost, the door will remain locked. Adding further, an electric strike only secures one side of the door, typically outside which an authorized person can access with the help of an access card or credential. To enable the door to open from inside as well, you need to install a lockset or panic bar. In electric strikes, an access control device is used to trigger the motor and unlock the door.

Advantages of Electric Strikes

  • Electric strikes are more economical than magnetic locks
  • Provides greater security during power outages by keeping the door locked
  • The installation process of the electric strike is cost-effective, simple, and quick

Disadvantages of Electric Strikes

  • Not compatible with most doors especially the ones with aluminium frame and hollow structure
  • Replacing a card if lost or stolen can be an expensive affair for you

Key Differences

After understanding the basics, it is our turn to understand the primary differences between an electric strike and a magnetic lock.

Let’s get started.

Basic Functionality & Working Principle

The working of magnetic locks is based on the core principles of electromagnetism where a presence of electric current between the armature decides and the metal plate decides the operation of the door. On the other side, the working of the electric strike is an electromechanical process where the latch is released electronically for unlocking the door.

Power Mode

Magnetic locks are fail-safe devices meaning the door unlocks when power is gone. Meanwhile, electric strikes are fail-secure locking systems and stay unlocked during a power cut. These days, electric strikes are coming with both fail-secure and fail-safe modes to offer better functionality.


The installation process of magnetic locks takes place on the face of the door and frame, similar to other door locks. It requires a raceway between the power transfer device and door to allow the flow of electric current to the lock. While technicians mount electric strike and writing inside the same door frame.

Best Electric Strike & Magnetic Lock Brands in UAE & Qatar

Choosing the right brand of an electric strike and the magnetic lock can be a challenging task with so many available options in the market. Based on our research, here are some of the most popular electric strikes and magnetic locks.


Magnetic locks and electric strike offer a great level of security to your doors. We hope you have a clear idea about the key differences between electric lock and strike. If you are in the process of updating the door security of your home or office, we recommend you consider the following factors while deciding on buying a maglock or electric strike.

  • Location and type of the door
  • Budget
  • Primary safety and security concerns

Also, strictly make sure the locks you install follow the safety rules and regulations of the local authority.

Which is a Better Security Option?

Let Stebilex Systems Help You.

Electric strikes and magnetic locks are easy-to-use, install, and cost-effective solutions to keep your premises safe. With so many products and brands available in the market, it can be a challenging task to decide the right security solution for your home or building. The best thing you can do is contact Stebilex Systems today. And our highly qualified product experts and awesome sales team will be more than happy to help you decide the right security solution.

Do you need help with your Access Control or Biometrics projects?

Let experts at Stebilex help you today.