FAQ: Does RFID Read Through Walls?

We get this question quite often and the simple answer is “yes”. RFID readers can read through walls, but it is fairly easy ensure it is reading tags in only one room at a time.

Walls constructed of concrete and cinder block will typically prevent most RFID tags from reading through the walls.  However, if your walls are constructed of sheetrock, RFID signals can pass through fairly easily.  Most people, however, do not want to read RFID tags from another room when they enter a room to inventory.  So, during your initial on-site testing, we thoroughly go through all the pros and cons of different types of tags, different read ranges, and different types of handheld devices.  Each tag and reader has their own read range, some that may only scan at a relatively close range, and others with a very long read range.  Choosing a read range that works for your assets in your environment is the first step in ensuring RFID signals are not read through rooms.

If you are looking to inventory specific rooms that are in close proximity to one another, power levels on the handheld can also be adjusted to minimize reading through walls.  If you are reading tags through walls, we recommend reducing the power on the handheld. This will help ensure that when you are scanning cubicles or small rooms next to each other you will not read tags from the next cubicle or room.