Tips on Getting through a Metal Detector without setting it off

imagesWhen you know you are required to be screened by a metal detector, either a walk-through or hand-held, you become more aware of your physical presence.  Some detectors are known to be pretty sensitive in detecting everything from a pocket knife to a body piercing.  For the most part, if you don’t normally carry something that may alarm the general public, you may have nothing to worry about.

The good news is if you can plan ahead on what to wear or what to pack, you may be able to pass through your screening without additional problems.  Consider the following tips to help you pass your metal detector screening.


  • Get familiar with types of metals metal detectors commonly detect.  It may also help to become familiar with different types of security detectors and items they commonly detect.


  • If you are worried about body piercings potentially setting off the detector you may want to remove it just before you are screened.  You may be able to check with a security professional about the piercing or learn what type of metal it is made of.


  • If you carry such items as a pocket knife or other similar weapon, don’t take it with you.  This may seem like common sense but many people often forget they have such an item with them on a regular basis.


  • If you have a medical device such as a surgical implant or pacemaker, it helps to notify security prior to your screening.  Some people have a special identification card authorized by their doctor that states you have a pacemaker or surgical implant.


  • Some people have high amounts of iron in their system.  While this is rare, sometimes this is why a person constantly sets off a detector without any other reason.  Iron can be detected by a metal detector, but if the body has excessive amounts of it this could be a problem.  Your doctor can run tests and see if this is a problem and recommend a solution.


  • Be aware of items you are carrying.  This will likely depend on where the metal detector screening will take place.  If you are at an airport, know potential items in your luggage that could set off the alarm.  Some hand-held devices will pick up all sorts of metal fragments.


  • Don’t carry something with you that you are not prepared to show or surrender to security personnel.


  • Ask the TSA for any further questions regarding your safety concerns