Looking for a way to make a routine trip to the beach or the park a little more fun? Metal detectors are the perfect prop for exploration expeditions with the whole family. Kiddos will love scouring for treasure in unexpected places and the loot they uncover will inspire endless excitement. No matter your little one’s age or capabilities, here are the best metal detectors for kids.
Best Metal Detectors for Kids
(Best for beginners — $)
Why it’s great: This metal detector is designed specifically for beginners and features advanced tech that’s easy to use. Its LCD display screen helps users discriminate between three different types of targets and is guaranteed to pick up the presence of all metals, including gold, silver, brass, aluminum, iron, bronze, lead, and steel. This metal detector’s depth detection is six inches for coin-size objects and up to two feet for larger objects. Lightweight and easy to carry, this metal detector has an adjustable stem to accommodate both kids and adults.
Keep in mind: Some customers say that the spade tool that comes with this metal detector is not sturdy enough for long-term use.
Good for: First-time treasure hunters as this metal detector has a simple design and is easy and effective to use.
(Easiest to operate — $$)
Why it’s great: This metal detector is praised by customers for its kid-friendly design, which ensures little ones can use it on their own without help from mom and dad. With a six-inch water-resistant search coil, adjustable aluminum stem, and durable wing stand, this metal detector is designed to identify all sorts of buried metal objects. An easy-to-read display screen offers indicators for target depth, battery life, and discrimination mode, which kids can adjust as needed.
Keep in mind: This metal detector requires two AA alkaline batteries to operate.
Good for: Kids of all ages as this metal detector is lightweight, easy to operate, and includes plenty of fun features.
(Highest quality — $$$)
Why it’s great: While this metal detector is one of the pricier products on the market, it includes all the bells and whistles. With four modes of operation, this metal detector can be adjusted to effectively discriminate between different types of metal objects. It also has the ability to detect smaller objects up to eight inches deep and larger objects up to four feet deep. A ten-inch waterproof coil allows for advanced accuracy during searches while the adjustable stem and ergonomic armrest ensure maximum comfort for all users.
Keep in mind: Some customers say this product is a little bigger than they expected, especially when used by smaller children.
Good for: Serious treasure hunters who want a metal detector with advanced features and high accuracy.
(Best accuracy — $$)
Why it’s great: This metal detector is praised by customers for its compact design and high accuracy measurements. Sold with a shovel, spade, and convenient backpack carrying case, this metal detector has everything you need for a treasure-hunting expedition. An adjustable stem ensures that this metal detector can be used by the whole family while its large waterproof coil provides heightened accuracy for targets of all sizes.
Keep in mind: Some customers say the adjustable armrest can be difficult to lock into place.
Good for: Kids who want a powerful metal detector that will pick up a wide range of metal objects.
(Easiest to assemble — $$)
Why it’s great: Designed for kids ages 5-15, this metal detector comes with a spade, shovel, and backpack carrying case. This metal detector also features a waterproof search coil, adjustable stem, and comfortable armrest. The LCD screen provides details on all its settings, including detection modes, sensitivity levels, battery status, and power level. With five-inch depth detection and three distinct search modes, this metal detector will pick up a variety of targets, such as nails, aluminum rings, coins, gold, silver, and copper.
Keep in mind: Some customers say the instructions that come with this metal detector are a little confusing.
Good for: Gifting as this metal detector is one of the most popular and well-reviewed options on the market.
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(Best value — $)
Why it’s great: This Little Experimenter metal detector is lightweight and easy to use, making it the perfect choice for young explorers. With a depth detection of six inches, this metal detector can be angled to search even the hardest-to-reach places. This metal detector’s LCD screen alerts users when objects are in close range and will pick up a variety of metals, including gold, silver, iron, copper, and nickel. This metal detector also comes with an educational guidebook, which includes eight practical experiments to conduct with your metal detector.
Keep in mind: Some customers report that the beeping sound this metal detector makes is louder than they expected.
Good for: Younger kids as this metal detector’s features are designed specifically for beginning treasure hunters.
(Most ergonomic design — $$)
Why it’s great: Available in two colors, this metal detector is easy to assemble and easy to operate. Four search settings allow kids to accurately target coins, gold, silver, and bronze. Both the grip and the coil of this metal detector are adjustable and waterproof. Additionally, its lightweight design and padded armrest ensure maximum ergonomic support. This metal detector offers eight-inch depth detection and has three knobs to control volume, sensitivity, and object discrimination.
Keep in mind: Some customers say this metal detector’s display screen isn’t as easy to read as other models.
Good for: Traveling as this metal detector is easy to assemble and designed to be compact and portable.
FAQs about Metal Detectors for Kids
1. What should I consider when shopping for a metal detector for my child?
When shopping for a metal detector, you’ll want to find something that’s lightweight and easy to use to ensure your child can operate it by themselves. Most metal detectors for kids are designed to be compact and intuitive, and some products even come with additional tools and a backpack carrying case for extra convenience. You’ll also want to find a metal detector with extensive battery life to ensure explorations don’t get cut short. You’ll most likely want a metal detector with a water-proof coil, which allows kiddos the opportunity to explore different terrains without risking damage to their instrument. Accuracy and object discrimination are also important factors, so look for a metal detector with high depth detection capability and target identification settings. For the best ergonomic support, choose a metal detector with a comfortable armrest and adjustable stem.
2. How does a metal detector work?
A metal detector uses electricity to create an electromagnet field, which is transmitted from the instrument’s search coil into the ground. This electromagnetic field will allow the metal detector to register the presence of metal objects. Most metal detectors will make escalating sounds to alert users how close or far away a target is. Metal detectors have varying depth detection and accuracy capabilities. Typically, metal detectors can pick up smaller objects 4-8 inches deep and larger objects 2-4 feet deep.
3. What age is best for a metal detector?
Metal detectors can be fun for the whole family and are typically recommended for kids ages three and up. That being said, you’ll want to review the weight and height specifications of a particular product to ensure your little explorer will be able to use it properly. Fortunately, most metal detectors are designed to be lightweight and have an adjustable stem to accommodate children of all ages.
4. Are metal detectors safe for kids to use?
Yes, metal detectors are safe to use, especially those designed specifically for kids or beginners as they are usually easy to handle and simple to operate. Regardless, you should always read a product’s instructions to ensure you’re using your metal detector properly and safely.
5. What kinds of objects will metal detectors pick up?
Most metal detectors will pick up a variety of metal objects, including gold, silver, brass, aluminum, iron, bronze, lead, and steel. However, capabilities can vary depending on the model, so check your metal detector’s item description to determine its specific qualifications.
Metal detectors are a great way to encourage your little one’s interest in exploring, whether it’s in their own backyard or during a beach vacation. Most metal detectors designed for kids are lightweight and portable as well as easy to operate. The best metal detectors come with an adjustable stem, waterproof coil, and target discrimination settings. Search accuracy will vary depending on the model you choose but most metal detectors have impressive depth detection and can pick up a wide range of metal objects. Not only are metal detectors safe for kids to operate on their own but they’re a fun device for the whole family to learn how to use together. No matter where your next family adventure takes you, a metal detector will provide hours of active fun. Your treasure hunts may even yield some exciting discoveries along the way!