What Are Slam Latches and How Do They Work?

Slam latch by Monroe

Have you heard of slam hatches? You can use them to easily close doors and cabinets. When installed on a door or cabinet, slam latches will allow you to push the door or cabinet. Pushing the door or cabinet will engage the slam latch.

Overview of Slam Latches

Also known as push-to-shut latches, slam latches are heavy-duty latching mechanisms that support pushing. You don’t have to touch a slam latch to close the door or cabinet with which it’s used. Instead, you just need to push the door or cabinet.

How Slam Latches Work

Slam latches come in a variety of styles, most of which leverage a spring. They feature an enclosed spring. Pushing the door or cabinet will result in the spring applying pressure to the pin. This pressure will hold the pin in place and, thus, prevent the door or cabinet from opening on its own.

Most locking-style slam latches feature a spring-and-pin design. You can push the door or cabinet to “lock” the slam latch. But there are non-locking slam latches as well. Non-locking slam latches typically feature a different design. Rather than a spring and pin, they may feature a set of plungers.

Slam Latches vs Traditional Latches

You might be wondering how slam latches differ from traditional latches. Traditional latches consist of a metal rod and a slide-through cylindrical. After pushing a door or cabinet shut, you’ll have to slide the metal rod into the cylindrical.

Slam latches feature an entirely different design. You can see an example of a slam latch in the photo above. There’s no metal rod, nor is there a slide-through cylinder. Slam latches feature a hinge-like design with an enclosed spring.

Benefits of Using Slam Latches

The main benefit of using slam latches is ease of use. They are easier to use than most other types of latches, including traditional latches. To use a traditional latch, you’ll have to manually slide the metal rod through the cylinder. To use a slam latch, you just need to push the door or cabinet.

Not only are they easy to use; slam latches are easy to install. You can install them on doors and cabinets using threaded fasteners.

Slam latches are durable. They are commonly used in military applications, so they are designed with an emphasis on durability. Slam latches can withstand regular use — even in extreme environments — without succumbing to premature wear and tear.

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