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5 Common Latching Relay Applications Today

Using a latching relay for lighting control, one of its most common uses
Using a latching relay for lighting control, one of its most common uses

Depending on the required output and other factors such as performance, latching relays can be used for a variety of tasks. This overview of latching relay applications explains the use of these relays in five common settings. Read it to discover the ways that latching relays are being used in the world today.

What Do Latching Relays Do?

Latching relays refer to the type of relay that remains in the same state even after power supply to it is removed. Unlike with other relays, using latching relays does not require a continuous energy input. That means ability to control systems while consuming very little power.

Latching relays can be magnetic or mechanical. A magnetic latching relay uses the force of magnetism to keep the armature and, therefore, its contacts in position. A mechanical latching relay uses a spring and/or lever mechanism and mechanical lock to keep the armature in its desired position.

Owing to their ability to remain in the same state after power is removed, latching relays find application in a broad variety of electrical and electronic systems. Continue below for a list of five settings where using latching relays provides the best switching and control option.

RV battery disconnect relay
RV battery disconnect relay

Latching Relay Applications

Latching relay applications range from home use to residential to commercial and industrial settings. You can use them to control a variety of functions, from turning lights on and off to automatically controlling the operations of complex machinery. Check out these five application examples of latching relays:

1. Automotive latching Relay

This is often a 12V latching relay used in cars to control systems that must remain on for extended periods. In these systems, the latching auto relay helps conserve battery charge, in addition to preventing the circuits and relay coil from overheating.

Another common use of the automotive latching relay is in the control of a car’s high/low beam headlights. In this application, a single pulse of current is sent to the relay, which then switches the headlight control from low to high beams.

The latching auto relay will can also be used in the circuit to disconnect the battery of an automobile when necessary, such as when the charge is at extremely low level. The main advantage of using latching relays in automobiles is that battery charge is greatly conserved.

2. Latching Relay for Lighting Control

One of the most common latching relay applications is in lighting controls. These can be the lighting systems of homes, offices, large residential complexes, and more. The latching relay for lighting control is used to switch circuits on/off as needed.

The advantage of using a latching relay in this setting is that it allows for lights control from a several different locations. This is useful for convenience.

Because latching relays only consume power monetarily during the switching action, their use in lighting circuits means considerable energy conservation, especially when a system is large enough to cause huge energy losses.

3. Motor Latching Relay

In this application, the relay is basically used as a changeover switch. A latching changeover relay means a switching device that will alternate power between two active circuits based on the application of a pulse or current.

In this scenario, the latching relay is used to switch power to industrial pumps that must alternate between themselves, or fans and compressors that need to run at alternating intervals.

This application usually requires a timed latching relay. As such, additional external components are typically needed to work in tandem with the latching relay.

offers higher efficiency, since it does not require continuous energy input to keep the switch in position. It also helps reduce the size of the overall system, as it is a compact device.

4. Arduino Latching Relay

Among the many uses of the latching relay, Arduino projects are one of the most common. In these applications, the impulse relay offers more befits than other types of relays, both in terms of performance and power consumption.

One of them is that it allows for a single control switch to be used to toggle multiple circuits in an Arduino system. This helps minimize power consumption. In addition, latching relays can operate at higher frequencies and voltages than most regular relays and have improved noise suppression.

An Arduino latching relay is usually the PCB mounted type. A PCB latching relay allows for the use of multiple relays, taking up minimal space on the board. It also allows for integration with an electronic driver circuit.

5. RV Latching Relay

Latching relay applications go beyond the normal household and commercial settings where it connects to the normal AC lines. Recreational vehicles (RVs) also use latching relays to control various functions and appliances.

The RV latching relay is a different construction that the usual relay for household and other system control and automation needs. It features a heavy-duty constructing, and is mainly used to disconnect the battery. This is needed most when the vehicle is in storage.

The RV battery disconnect relay is normally operated from remote location, on a switch board panel. Just like with other latching relays, it requires a single pulse to have it disconnect the battery and another to connect it when needed.

These are just some of the many applications of the latching or impulse relay. As you can see, this relay has a lot of uses and can be installed in a variety of settings, especially when looking to increase energy efficiency or save space in their electrical systems.


Latching relay applications are very wide and varied, ranging from lighting systems control to motor control and so on. It offers several advantages over regular relays, such as increased efficiency, space savings, and more reliable operation. Whatever your application, make sure you choose the right latching relay for your particular system or piece of equipment.

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I am William, Electrical Engineering Author. Dedicated to writing technical articles on Timer Relay, Monitoring Relay, Surge Protection Device and other electrical devices. With 7 years of writing experience, I am committed to providing accurate and in-depth expertise to my readers.

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