How to Use a Metal Detector?

How to Use a Metal Detector

Ready to start detecting? Before you begin, it’s important to know how and where to set up your metal detector. A good setup will save you time—and possibly even your life!

Using a metal detector is easy and fun, so you can enjoy all the benefits of finding treasure without having to worry about getting your hands dirty.

But how do you use one?

Before you start detecting, it’s important to learn the basic parts of a metal detector and how to use them.

As you start to learn how to use a metal detector, it’s important to understand the basic parts of a metal detector and how they work. When you’re first starting out, it’s helpful to have someone with experience show you how these parts work together. If that’s not possible for you, this guide should help you get started.

  • Searchcoil (also called “search coil” or “probe”) – The main tool that allows a metal detector user to find treasure. It picks up electromagnetic signals from buried metals and sends them through the wires inside the coil into the control box where they are amplified into audible sounds by speakers in your headphones or on your headset.
  • Control Box – The area where all control knobs and switches are located on your device; this is what lets users adjust sensitivity levels so their machines can be more sensitive or less sensitive depending on conditions like soil composition or mineralization levels in different areas they might be searching for buried treasures. It also contains meters that display signal strength values so users know exactly when something is close enough to detect before digging (or pulling up roots!).

How Should a Metal Detector Be Used?

The first thing you need to know about using a metal detector is that it’s not like a pen. You can’t just use it with your fingers and expect it to work.

Instead, you’ll want to do the following:

  1. Attach the coil ends to the handle of your metal detector. Make sure they’re secure and don’t fall off while you’re walking around or digging in dirt.
  2. Turn on your metal detector by pressing its power button. You’ll know it’s working when the lights on its front flash green and red in alternating patterns (some detectors have different patterns that indicate different functions).
  3. Adjust the sensitivity settings by pressing down on a button labeled “Sensitivity.” This will allow you to focus specifically on finding small objects buried in soil instead of larger ones farther away from where you’re standing right now!
  4. Walk around looking for buried objects with your eyes open for anything unusual—like little holes in the ground where someone might have buried something valuable before moving away or dying without telling anyone else where exactly they put those things first!

Different Metal Detectors Have Different Features.

Different metal detectors have different features. Some are designed to search for gold and silver, while others are made specifically for coins. Some can find relics and jewelry as well, while some focus on just one of these kinds of objects.

The type of metal detector you need depends on what kind of treasure you’re looking for. If you want to find gold and silver nuggets, then it’s best to use a machine with some advanced features that allow it to detect the two types separately so that you don’t have any false positives (wanting something but getting nothing). If your goal is simply coins or relics, however, then there may be less need for advanced technology in your detector because they won’t interfere with finding what they’re designed for (coins/relics).

Read the Owner’s Manual

Before you can start using your new metal detector, you need to read the owner’s manual. Reading through the manual will help you understand how to use your metal detector and all of its many features.

The first thing that you should do is learn about the different settings on your machine and how they work. For example, some machines have a sensitivity setting that allows you to adjust how sensitive it is to detecting metals within range (more sensitive means more likely for it to detect metals but more likely for false positives). The next step is learning about modes of operation. Many machines have different modes: one mode may be great for finding gold coins but not so good at finding bullets or jewelry; another mode may be better at finding bullets and jewelry but less good at finding gold coins; still another mode might work well for both types of searches.

Another important thing that needs explaining in an owner’s manual is how each control works—you want these explained clearly so that there are no surprises when using them! And finally, an important part of understanding any machine before using it properly involves knowing what coils are available on said machine so there are no surprises later down the line when searching locations where those particular types would be useful but aren’t available due lack of knowledge beforehand.”

Pre-Set Discrimination Setting

Many machines come with a pre-set discrimination setting. To work effectively, you will need to modify the discrimination setting.

Discrimination settings are set by the manufacturer and allow you to select what you want to find and ignore everything else. The default value for this feature is usually not optimal for all types of metal detecting activities such as prospecting, coin hunting or relic hunting so it should be modified as needed depending on your specific needs at any given time.

When you’re in an Area that Could Contain Gold, Pitch your Detector Correctly.

  • The discrimination setting will allow you to filter out any undesired metals, such as aluminum. If you’re not sure what metal your detector is set to reject, try turning it all the way down and digging everything that comes up. If there’s no gold in it, leave it alone!
  • Setting the sensitivity correctly will prevent false signals from things like iron nails or other man-made objects. To do this, place your detector on a flat surface and adjust until there are no pings when moving along the ground or nearby trees.
  • Ground balancing helps ensure that you don’t get false readings from buried objects with different electrical properties than soil—it also makes your search process easier by eliminating unnecessary noise caused by mineralization in rich soils like those found near streams or rivers.
  • Target ID allows for more precise identification of valuable items such as gold nuggets, jewelry pieces, coins and relics using their unique audio signatures so that they can be easily distinguished from trashy items such as aluminum cans or foil wrappers

Use the Correct Coil Size for the Job at Hand.

Depending on your needs and the type of grounds you want to search, you will want to use a different coil size. If you’re searching for large objects like lost keys or coins, then a larger coil size is best so that the detector can cover more ground at once. For example, if your goal is to find gold jewelry and need something small enough to fit in your pocket but still powerful enough to detect small objects, then go with a smaller coil.

On the other hand, if you are planning on searching areas where there may be many targets close together—for example, in an area with lots of metal trash—then using a larger coil size will help prevent false signals caused by overlapping targets (i.e., two or three coins near each other).

Become Familiar with your Chosen Metal Detector by Practicing in your yard or Neighborhood.

  • Become familiar with your chosen metal detector by practicing in your yard or neighborhood.
  • Use a field guide to help you identify the items you find, and practice using your metal detector on different targets, such as coins and jewelry.
  • Practice with different coil sizes to see which works best for you.
  • Use different discrimination settings to learn what types of metals you can detect or ignore.

Ask Permission Before Detecting on Someone Else’s Property.

You will have the most success when you ask permission from the landowner first. You can do this in person, or by phone. Most people will be happy to let you detect on their property as long as you are respectful and stay on their property boundaries. It’s also important not to leave any trash behind when detecting on someone else’s land, which would be considered littering.

If a landowner denies your request for permission, respect that decision and move along with your metal detecting adventure elsewhere!


When you’re ready to go out and detect, remember that patience is important. Don’t be discouraged if your first few attempts don’t yield anything. You need to get used to the process of finding treasure with your metal detector before you start finding gold or silver coins!

By Metal Hunting Team

Your premier resource for all things metal detecting and treasure hunting, created by avid hobbyists for fellow enthusiasts. Dive into a trove of insights, tips, and discoveries with us!

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