The IP (Ingress Protection) rating system is used to provide an indication of the level of protection resulting from a system or barrier against intrusion or environmental factors such as dust, paper particles, liquids, and water. Similar ratings have been widely used in the automotive industry for many years but have become more common in consumer electronics since the introduction of waterproof smartphones.
Ingress Protection Classification
The ratings are composed of two numbers, with the first number indicating the level of protection against solid objects, and the second number indicating the level of protection against water.
The first number is an IP code ranging from 0-6 and it indicates the level of protection against dust and solid objects.
- 0 means no protection.
- 1 means protection against solid objects over 50mm in diameter (such as a hand)
- 2 means protection against solid objects over 12mm in diameter (such as a finger)
- 3 means protection against solid objects over 2.5mm in diameter (such as a tool or small wire)
- 4 means protection against solid objects over 1mm in diameter (such as small wires or screws)
- 5 means protection against dust (not completely dust tight, but enough to keep dust from getting in and affecting operation)
- 6 means complete protection against dust.
The second number is an IP code ranging from 0-8, and it indicates the level of protection against water.
- 0 means no protection
- 1 means protection against dripping water (up to 15 degrees from vertical)
- 2 means protection against dripping water when tilted at an angle of up to 15 degrees
- 3 means protection against spraying water (up to 60 degrees from vertical)
- 4 means protection against splashing water from all angles
- 5 means protection against water jets (6.3mm nozzle, from all angles)
- 6 means protection against powerful water jets (12.5mm nozzle, from all angles)
- 7 means protection against short-term immersion (up to 1m of water)
- 8 means protection against long-term immersion (beyond 1m of water)
So for example, if a product has an IP rating of IP67, it means that it is completely dust tight and protected against immersion in water to a depth of 1 meter for a short period of time.
It is important to note that IP rating does not guarantee that a product will be completely sealed against the ingress of dust or water, it just indicates the level of protection provided. It’s also good to note that these are testing guidelines, it’s not a guarantee that the product will survive in that situation.
What is IP69K?
IP69K is a high-pressure, high-temperature washdown rating that is commonly used in food and beverage, as well as other industries where equipment needs to be cleaned frequently and thoroughly. It is an international standard that specifies a high level of protection against water and dust ingress.
This rating is defined by the German DIN 40050-9 standard, which was initially designed for testing the sealing effectiveness of electrical equipment and components for use in mobile working machines.
Products rated IP69K are able to withstand high-pressure and high-temperature water jet cleaning, making them ideal for use in environments where equipment is frequently exposed to dust and debris and needs to be cleaned regularly to maintain a high level of hygiene.
To achieve an IP69K rating, the equipment must pass a test where the equipment is subjected to a pressure of at least 1450 psi (100 bar), and the nozzle is held at a distance of no more than 3 meters and at an angle of 0°, 30°, 60°, and 90°. The water temperature must also be at least 176°F (80°C) and the duration of the test must be at least 3 minutes. This test simulates the harsh conditions that equipment may be exposed to during regular cleaning and sanitizing procedures.
Products that meet this rating are often used in industries such as food processing, pharmaceuticals, and construction, where equipment is frequently exposed to harsh environmental conditions and needs to be cleaned and sanitized regularly.
It is important to note that products that meet the IP69K rating have been tested to withstand a high level of pressure and temperature but that does not mean that the product can withstand that condition during its normal operation. It’s just meant to be a standard for cleaning and sanitizing.
What Industries Use Ingress Protection?
Ingress protection (IP) ratings are used in a wide variety of industries to indicate the level of protection provided by a product against the intrusion of dust and water. Some examples of industries that use IP ratings include:
Many electronic devices, such as smartphones, tablets, and laptops, are rated for their level of protection against dust and water. This can be particularly important for portable devices that may be used in challenging environments.
Cars and trucks are exposed to a variety of weather conditions and can be exposed to dust, rain, and other environmental factors. IP ratings can be used to indicate the level of protection provided by various components, such as headlights and electrical systems.
Many industrial applications require rugged equipment and can withstand harsh environments. IP ratings can be used to indicate the level of protection provided by industrial equipment, such as controllers and sensors.
Building and Construction
Building and construction materials and equipment are exposed to various weather conditions, and IP ratings can indicate the level of protection provided against dust and water.
Medical equipment and devices that are used in hospitals and other healthcare settings must be able to withstand exposure to dust, water, and other contaminants. IP ratings can be used to indicate the level of protection provided by medical equipment, such as X-ray machines and patient monitors.
Outdoor and Recreational
Outdoor and recreational equipment, such as camping gear and outdoor lights, are exposed to the elements and need to be able to withstand exposure to dust, water, and other environmental factors. IP ratings can be used to indicate the level of protection provided by outdoor and recreational equipment.
These are some examples, but IP ratings are used in many other industries as well. The IP rating system is widely recognized and it is used around the world and across a wide range of sectors, so products that meet certain IP standards can be used in multiple industries and many countries.
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