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How To Decode Your Product's IP Rating?

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  • How To Decode Your Product’s IP Rating?
  • June 26, 2018

How To Decode Your Product’s IP Rating?

IP or Ingress Protection denotes the level of security of an electrical device against outside intrusions such as moisture, dirt or any man-made interference. In other words, IP rating denotes how securely sealed and protected an electrical device is when it is exposed to external elements (natural or man-made). 

IP ratings are denoted with numbers that are in reality specific codes that indicate the level of security rating. The higher the rating, the more effectively sealed and protected your device is. IP rating comprises two numbers that indicate strength and security of your electronic device. 

IP numbers vary depending on the electrical device and its usage. Most devices carry a rating of IP65, IP66, IP67 or IP68. The IP number will tell you how secure the device is.

The first number in the series indicates the kind of impact an electrical item can endure during regular handling. The second number indicates the level of protection your electrical device has when exposed to harmful outside elements. 

A specific chart is followed for both the numbers and the ratings in the chart indicate how low/high the protection level of the device is.

The chart for the first number denotes security ratings against solid intrusion or impact. A rating of zero indicates no protection, 1 indicates protection against human body parts, 2 indicates protection against fingers or similar small objects, 3 indicates protection against tools or wires, 4 indicates protection against rigid object bigger than 1mm; 5 indicates protection against dirt and 6 indicates that your device is absolutely dustproof. 

The chart for the second number denotes protection ratings against liquid intrusion.

Here too, a zero rating indicates no protection, one indicates protection against condensation, 2 indicates protection against water drops, 3 and 4 both indicate protection against liquid sprays and 5 indicates protection against low pressure water jets while 6indicates protection against high pressure water jets.

A rating of 7 indicates protection against temporary immersions while 8 indicates protection ability against extensive immersion. 

Manufacturers of electrical devices get their products checked for IP ratings at in-house labs or at third-party facilities that comply with the industry standard regarding rules and regulations.

The procedure for testing includes examining the device’s ability to protect itself against impacts from solids and liquids. It also tests how well the device complies with the manufacturer’s waterproofing specifications. Devices that are tested for their resistance against liquid typically have all their ports and covers tightly shut before being immersed.

Then, the results are calculated to arrive at the appropriate IP rating. The entire process takes about a few weeks from the date the samples are received for testing.

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