magnet metal detector

Can Metal Detectors Detect Magnets?

can metal detectors detect a magnet

Metal detecting is a wonderful hobby that you should try at a certain point of your life! One of the good things I like about it is the nerdy aspect of it …

… In other words, once you get your first machine at hand, you will start asking all different questions about can this skinny device detect?

One of those questions is related to magnets and magnetic items!

In this short Post, I talk about that particularly.

Can metal detectors detect magnets?

All metal detectors can detect magnets and magnetic metals in general …

… However, in most cases, modern machines are programmed and designed in such a manner that they disregard finding magnetic metals such as iron.

Simply because it is not as valuable as non-ferrous metals such as platinum, copper, palladium (Check where to metal detect for palladium), silver and even gold.

You can even utilize some features on your detector to ignore magnetic metals that represent little to non-value. Those features are:

  • Discrimination: Where you literally tell your machines to ignore iron, magnetic metals and all sorts of junk out there that could produce false signals.
  • Ground Balance: That’s a more advanced feature where your machine adapts to the ground condition so it won’t pick up false signals coming from tiny ground metallic particles.

What Metal Detector to use to find magnets?

In case, for whatever reason, you are looking to find magnetic items of even magnets, then you can use this a cheap model like the Bounty Hunter Tracker 4 (Check it Here on Amazon) …

… This model is extremely adapted for beginners and those who have never used a detection machine before.

It is very simple to use and the settings it offers are powerful enough and somewhat intuitive.

It has a nob that determines which discrimination level you should operate in.

In this case, you should start with the lowest discrimination level, so your machine will pick up everything including magnetic items.

A good way to identify magnetic items is by their low electrical conductivity! This means that once you detect an item that’s highly magnetic, you should notice a low VDI number.

Also, there are some machines like the Garrett AT Pro  that have a specific tone for iron and magnetic metals. So this could help also …

Examples of magnetic metals?

There are many examples of magnetic metals that could represent some value, these include:


One of the tips I always give to beginners when they first use a metal detector is to not use any discrimination at all …

… Yes, this could lead you to find magnets, iron, magnetic metals and general and other low value targets. But this will have a very positive impact on you learning your machine much quicker than usual.

Anyway, I hope that this short Post was useful and that you’ve learnt something new in here.

To be honest, I am used to write longer and more in-depth articles, but when I find relevant but simple questions, I prefer to tackle them quickly in such short form articles.

Finally, I highly invite you to check this article about old metal detectors! You will learn a lot about how these use to work and how they’ve evolved over time!

About the Author

Carissa Harmer

Carissa is the huge metal detecting enthusiast that loves collecting coins. She is also highly interested in other treasure hunting activities like magnet fishing and gold prospecting/panning.