Understanding IP Resistance Ratings

Understanding IP Resistance Ratings

IP stands for International Protection Marking, or also commonly referred to as Ingress Protection Marking. This classification rates the degree and effectiveness of protection against ingress of foreign matter (dust, solid objects, and moisture) into an enclosure or product housing.

Example Rating Breakdown:
The first digit after IP, 6, represents resistance to solid bodies. A level 6 means this product is protected from dust and is dust tight. The second digit after IP, 7, represents resistance to liquids and moisture. A level 7 means this product is protected from immersion in freshwater up to a depth of 1 meter, or 3 feet.

Solid Objects/Dust Protection Levels (1st digit after IP)

  • Level 0 – No Protection
  • Level 1 – Effective against >50mm – Any large surface of the body, such as the back of a hand, but no protection against deliberate contact with a body part.
  • Level 2 – Effective against >12.5mm – Fingers or similar objects
  • Level 3 – Effective against >2.5mm – Tools, thick wires, etc.
  • Level 4 – Effective against >1mm – Most wires, slender screws, large ants etc.
  • Level 5 – Dust Protected – Ingress of dust not entirely prevented, but it must not enter in a sufficient quantity to interfere with the satisfactory operation of the equipment
  • Level 6 – Dust Tight – No ingress of dust; complete protection against contact (“dust tight”). A vacuum must be applied. Test duration of up to 8 hours based on air flow.

Liquid/Moisture Ingress Protection Levels (2nd digit after IP)

  • Level 0 – No Protection
  • Level 1 – Effective against vertically falling water drops
  • Level 2 – Effective against dripping water when tilted at 15 degrees
  • Level 3 – Effective against spraying water at any angle up to 60 degrees from vertical
  • Level 4 – Effective against splashing of water at any direction
  • Level 5 – Effective against water jets from any direction
  • Level 6 – Effective against powerful water jets from any direction
  • Level 6K – Effective against water jets with increased pressure from any direction
  • Level 7 – Effective against immersion in freshwater up to 1m (3ft) depth
  • Level 8 – Effective against immersion in freshwater 1m (3ft) or more depth
  • Level 9K – Effective against powerful high temperature water jets from varying angles

Other Protections/Letter Info (3rd digit after IP)

  • f – Oil Resistant
  • H – High voltage device
  • M – Device moving during water test
  • S – Device stationary during water test
  • W – Weather conditions

Additional IP Rating Info

  • Water rating is achieved using freshwater only, ratings may not be upheld in other fluids such as ocean salt water or water containing oils.
  • An X is used to fill the digit between rating levels not tested for (Example: IPX7, the X in the first digit after IP means this product is not certifiably rated for objects or dust protection (although it can be argued that to achieve a water resistance rating level of 7, dust protection is very likely on a similarly capable level); the 7 after the X maintains a rating for protection against liquid, specifically protection effective against immersion in freshwater up to 1m (3ft) depth.

Serfas® Products

Serfas® offers a multitude of headlights and taillights with IP resistance ratings, below are a few of those models:

E-Lume 1600 (USL-1600) $140.00 MSRP – Headlight – IPX6
E-Lume 1200 (USL-1200) $110.00 MSRP – Headlight – IPX6
E-Lume 900 (USL-900) $80.00 MSRP – Headlight – IPX6
E-Lume 650 (USL-650) $60.00 MSRP – Headlight – IPX6
E-Lume 500 (USL-500) $45.00 MSRP – Headlight – IPX4
E-Lume 250 (USL-250) $27.50 MSRP – Headlight – IPX4

Flat Panel LED (UTL-9) $25.00 MSRP – Tail Light – IPX4
Cosmo 60 (UTL-60) $35.00 MSRP – Tail Light – IPX6
Cosmo 30 (UTL-30) $25.00 MSRP – Tail Light – IPX6
Cosmo 15 (UTL-15) $20.00 MSRP – Tail Light – IPX3
Pluto (TL-25) $20.00 MSRP – Tail Light – IPX4

Article References, Understanding IP Resistance Ratings, Serfas® Blog Post:

  1. Trusted Reviews; http://www.trustedreviews.com/opinion/what-is-ip68-ip-ratings-explained-2947135 – Date Accessed: 4/24/2018
  2. The Enclosure Company; http://www.enclosurecompany.com/ip-ratings-explained.php – Date Accessed: 4/25/2018
  3. Wikipedia Article “IP Code;” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IP_Code#Second_digit:_Liquid_ingress_protection – Date Accessed: 4/24/2018
  4. Deggy; https://www.deggy.com/ip_ik_rating.html – Date Accessed: 4/25/2018

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