We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What Is a Solenoid Latch?

By Paul Scott
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
AboutMechanics is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At AboutMechanics, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

A solenoid latch is a remote locking mechanism that employs the actuation motion supplied by a solenoid to achieve its locking action. This actuation motion is generated by a moving plunger connected to the latching mechanism. A static wire wound coil is situated close to the plunger and connected to an external power source via a control circuit. When the control circuit is activated, the coil is energized, creating a strong magnetic field that pulls the plunger toward it, supplying the latching action in the process. Solenoid latches are used in a wide variety of lock types, including security doors, safes and vehicle doors.

Remote latching or locking action is used in many security and vehicle door applications and generally is facilitated using a solenoid latch. Similar in most respects to manually operated latches, these devices differ only in the inclusion of an electromagnetic solenoid element. This allows the latch to be released remotely or even automatically by energizing the solenoid coil via a control circuit. An operator in a remote location or an automated system such as a security card reader or timer then needs only to complete the circuit, and the door will open. Most solenoid latch mechanisms are of the night latch type, meaning that they re-lock automatically when the door is closed again.

The activation of the solenoid latch occurs because of the electromagnetic power of the solenoid. The latch tab is connected to a moving plunger that is located near a wire coil. An external electric power source is connected to the solenoid via a control circuit that, when activated, energizes the coil. This creates a powerful magnetic field around the solenoid latch coil, which pulls the moving plunger toward it. This movement is then transferred to the latch, which pulls out of its locked position.

The latch might be kept in the unlocked position for as long as the control circuit is active or for a pre-determined period of time that is controlled by a timer circuit. When the power is cut to the solenoid, a spring pushes the latch back into the locking position. If the door is then closed, the latch re-engages, and the door is once again locked. In some cases, a latching solenoid is used to keep the lock deactivated until a second, reverse-polarity electric pulse is sent to the solenoid coil. This functionality makes the solenoid latch ideal for remote access security doors, safes and automobile doors where push-button, key-card or keypad-code access is required.

AboutMechanics is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

Discussion Comments

AboutMechanics, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

AboutMechanics, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.