What Is The SwitchBot Lock Magnet? Where Should It Go?

The SwitchBot Lock comes with a small magnet inside the package. Now I’ve seen some users not know how to install it correctly, which causes some problems in the Lock’s operation, especially the auto-lock feature. 

So, I compiled a quick guide to help get you started with the right placement and alignment for the Lock’s magnet so your smart security system works as it should – reliably. 

Key Points

  • The SwitchBot Lock includes a small magnet in the box, which helps it determine its current position and status. 
  • The magnet should be installed on the doorframe, about 3 cm (1.2 inches) away from the Lock and parallel to it. 
  • The Lock then needs to be recalibrated so that it accurately knows your door’s locked and unlocked positions. 
  • The magnet helps with the auto-lock feature, so the door will automatically lock itself behind you.

What Is The SwitchBot Lock Magnet?

SwitchBot Lock Magnet

The SwitchBot Lock magnet works with the Lock’s built-in magnetic sensor to determine the status of the door: locked or unlocked. It helps make sure the Lock functions smoothly, and is also essential for the auto-lock feature. It should be installed on the doorframe, parallel to the Lock at a distance of 3 cm.

Now let’s get into how it works, the installation process, and how to troubleshoot any problems that may arise due to the magnet not being placed correctly. 

A Detailed Breakdown of the SwitchBot Lock Magnet

1. Functionality of the Magnet

Functionality of the Magnet

The SwitchBot Lock Magnet is just a simple magnet; no fancy features are built into that little piece of metal. And its function is quite simple too; it allows the Lock to detect its position and status more accurately. So it’ll know whether the door is locked, unlocked, or ajar. 

It does this by creating a magnetic field, which is sensed by the Lock’s magnetic sensor. Without the magnet installed, or if it’s not installed properly, you’re likely to run into more frequent calibration issues, which may even be a security issue. 

2. Installation of the SwitchBot Magnet

Before installing the SwitchBot magnet, it’s important to make sure the Lock is properly installed, as demonstrated in this video. Confirm that it’s securely in place, either with tape or screws. 

Now the magnet comes with a 3M double-sided tape pre-attached to it, so this is what you use to install it. First check the best place to install the magnet: it should be on the doorframe, parallel to the Lock, aligned with the top, and at a distance of roughly 3 cm (1.2 inches) from it. 

You can mark this position with a pencil. Clean the surface nicely with a damp cloth to remove any dust or grime. Then, use the tape to stick the magnet in place. 

Note that it shouldn’t be on the door itself, as this would cause the magnetic field to fluctuate and cause errors in the sensor.

3. Calibrate the Lock

Calibrate the Lock

Once the magnet and Lock are both properly installed, it’s time to calibrate them. Open the SwitchBot app, head to the Lock’s settings, and click on the Calibration option. 

The app will guide you with on-screen instructions, where you can show the locked and unlocked positions for your door. The Lock will then remember these positions and move within this range when you use the app to lock and unlock the door. 

4. Test the System

Now you should test the system to make sure everything is working. Particularly, you should test the auto-lock feature, which can be enabled inside the SwitchBot app. 

With this, the door will automatically lock itself after a preset duration, which you can adjust. Definitely a real time-saver when you’re in a hurry and forget to lock the door behind you. 

If there are any error messages or if the Lock seems to forget its current status, try adjusting the position of the magnet and re-calibrating it. 

Precautions and Troubleshooting the SwitchBot Lock Magnet

1. Metal Doors

Metal Doors

In case your door is made out of steel or another metal, then this may cause interference with the magnet and hinder the Lock’s functionality. You should reach out to SwitchBot support in this situation.

2. Re-calibrate or Extra Magnets

In some cases, it may not be possible to place the magnet exactly 3 cm away from the Lock, due to the design of the doorframe perhaps. Or maybe you find that the magnet is not working as it should, and the Lock is not detecting its status properly. 

First, you should try re-calibrating the lock to see if that fixes the issue. 

Alternatively, placing a small extra magnet can help too. Not a strong one, just a small weak magnet that will help strengthen the magnetic field around the Lock. SwitchBot support can help you with such an issue. 

3. Keep App and Firmware Updated

SwitchBot periodically pushes out app and firmware updates, so you should make sure everything is updated. This is particularly important for the Lock since an outdated software may have security vulnerabilities that could be exploited by bad actors. 


What should I do if I lose the SwitchBot Lock magnet?

If you lose the SwitchBot Lock magnet, you should contact SwitchBot support as they can likely send you a replacement magnet. Alternatively, it may be possible to get another small bar magnet of similar strength to use.

Can I use the SwitchBot Lock without the magnet? 

While it’s possible to use the SwitchBot Lock without the magnet, you’re likely to run into more issues, as the Lock may forget the door’s open/closed status, go out of calibration, and in some cases may try to use excessive rotational force to open the door. It’s best to install the magnet properly for a smooth operation. 

Can the magnet be recalibrated post-installation?

Yes, the magnet and the Lock can be recalibrated at any time with just a few simple steps. Use the SwitchBot app to find the ‘Recalibrate’ option in the device settings, then follow the instructions to show the Lock your door’s method of locking and unlocking. 


The SwitchBot Lock performs best when the magnet is installed properly. To recap, it should be installed on the doorframe, about 3cm away and parallel to the Lock’s body. Whenever you face any issues with the Lock, a recalibration step can help fix it. 

Feel free to ask any questions or leave your suggestions in the comments below.

About Tristan Perry

Tristan Perry is a software developer who is passionate about tech gadgets, DIY and housing. He has therefore loved seeing smart homes hit the mainstream. Tristan also has an academic background (in Math & Computer Science), and so he enjoys digging into the technical ways that smart home devices work.

Tristan owns close to a dozen Amazon Echo devices, way too many Philips Hue bulbs and lightstrips, a boat-load of Ring Cameras and Doorbells... and a bunch of other smart home devices too (from Reolink, Google Nest, GLEDOPTO and others).

If you have any questions, feedback or suggestions about this article, please leave a comment below. Please note that all comments go into a moderation queue (to prevent blog spam). Your comment will be manually reviewed and approved by Tristan in less than a week. Thanks!

Leave a Comment