Does Electrical Tape Block Metal Detectors? (We’ve Got The Answer)

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Cory Haasnoot

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Electrical tape and duct tape are used to repair a number of things including metal detectors. You might have a loose hanging wire or you need to duct tape up a part that wants to come loose from your metal detector. It has probably run through your mind that maybe electrical tape might block the magnetic signal coming out of the search coils on my metal detector?

So that begs the question:

Does electrical tape block metal detectors? Electrical tape doesn’t block the magnetic flow of a metal detector. As a matter of fact, there isn’t any product out there that will block a magnetic field.

Why Electrical Tape Doesn’t Block Metal Detectors Magnetic Flow

Since no known product or material can stop the magnetic flow coming from a metal detector then obviously electrical tape that might be wrapped around your search coil or wrapped around the target in the ground will not block the metal detector from detecting the object or objects. In the following, I will explain how a metal detector works in regards to how it transmits an electrical current that causes a magnetic field.

How Magnetic Flow Works in a Metal Detector

Metal detector magnetic flow.

A signal is transmitted from the electronics of the metal detector that causes an electrical current in the search coil. The electrical current in the search coil produces a magnetic field. Eddy current is the name of the electrical currents that make their way through the ground to the metal target. The magnetic field from the search coil causes these eddy currents.

The eddy currents then make a magnetic field. Once the magnetic field reaches a metal target in the ground the search coil detects that a magnetic field has been formed around the metal object and a small voltage of electricity is formed.

The metal detector electronics amplifies the signal coming from the search coil. The electronics then process the extracted signal from the target object into visual cues or sound effects in the metal detector control box. This is how depending on the metal detector you know what the target is that the metal detector is detecting be it silver, gold or coins, jewelry, or junk.

Digging Deeper: How Metal Detectors Work

Does Duct Tape Go Off in a Metal Detector?

A roll of silver duct tape.

Duct tape is made of rayon, polyester, nylon, fiberglass mesh that strengthens the tape and cotton. Some people think there is metal in duct tape. The coloring of the tape is made from an aluminum powder which gives the tape its grey appearance. But there is not enough aluminum in the tape to set off a metal detector. So even if your metal detector is wrapped in duct tape you will not get a false reading from the tape.

So it’s safe to say if you need to use duct tape on your machine to hold something on it you can without any adverse effects to the function of the metal detector. But I would have to say if your metal detector is getting to the point you need to duct tape it together you might want to look at buying yourself a new metal detector.

Metal Detectable Tape

There are some tapes out there that are designed to be detected with a metal detector. This kind of tape is called metal detectable tape and is used in the food industry. This kind of tape has a metal foil in it that can be detected by a metal detector. So you want to make sure you don’t use this type of tape on your metal detector because it will cause issues and false readings.


So now you know electrical tape will not block the signal coming from your metal detector. Also, duct tape does not set off a metal detector so you can wrap your cords or search coil with duct tape and it will not affect the machine’s function.

But make sure to stay away from metal detectable tape because it will cause false readings from your metal detector.

If you have any questions or comments please leave them in the comments section below. Until next time Happy Treasure Hunting!

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Author: Cory Haasnoot

Cory Haasnoot is an author, entrepreneur, metal detecting enthusiast, antique, coin collector, and founder of Treasure Seekr.

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