What are Ingress Protection(IP) Ratings?

Ingress protection(IP) rating (2)

Ingress Protection is issued by the International Electrotechnical Commission of the United States(IEC) is the world’s leading organization for the preparation and publication of international standards for all electrical, electronic and related technologies. These are known collectively as “electrotechnology”.

Ingress Protection(IP) Rating, or IP Code represents the degree of protection to prevent solid substances (including body parts such as hands and fingers), dust, accidental contact and water intrusion in electrical enclosures. Ingress Protection consists of two numbers and one Choose letter composition, the first number represents the degree of dust-proof, the second number represents the degree of waterproof. The standard is proposed to provide users with a precise degree of equipment protection.

In the United States, the Ingress Protection standard is IEC60529. Similarly, the European Ingress Protection standard is EN60529. With the development of electronic devices, the world’s demand for consumer electronic devices such as luminous lighting, smart phones and speaker accessories is increasing. Therefore, the Ingress Protection Ratings rating system becomes more and more important. Before the standard was proposed, the Ingress Protection Rating of these electronic devices were usually described in vague terms, such as dust-proof, waterproof and waterproof. But now we use the Ingress Protection Rating Standard to provide consumers with an accurate protection rating, so they know exactly what to expect.

Why is Ingress Protection Important?

Solid/liquid entering the core components of any electronic equipment (such as electrical conductors, batteries, circuits and motors, etc.) is very likely to damage electrical equipment. Therefore, in order to avoid any such damage caused by solid particles and moisture to the equipment, in order to maintain its working stability and efficiency, it is important that the equipment meets the requirements of Ingress Protection Ratings.

Electric Circuit corrosion

In order to improve the durability of lighting products and other electronic equipment and prevent the ingress of dust and water, we must manufacture housings and electronic equipment with higher IP ratings, which is very important.

Ingress Protection(IP) Chart

First Digit: Solids

The first digit indicates the Ingress Protection Rating that the enclosure provides against access to hazardous parts (e.g., electrical conductors, moving parts) and the ingress of solid foreign objects.

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Second Digit: Liquids

Protection of the equipment inside the enclosure against harmful ingress of water.

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IP Rating Reference Chart

Below is an easy to follow reference chart to help you decide which IP rating you need or have.

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The definition of IP68

As we mentioned earlier, the Ingress Protection rating usually consists of four characters. But in some special cases, there may be five. The first two characters I and P stand for Ingress Protection, or in other words, it means that the tissue debris enters the inside of the object.

The third digit is a number, indicating its ability to resist small solids (dust/sand, etc.), with a maximum rating of 6. The range is from 0 to 6, that is, from no protection at all to small sand, all dust or a small amount of dust.

IP68 surface

The last digit is the waterproof or Ingress Protection Rating, the maximum level is 8. The 8 at the end means that the instrument has been tested in a pool with a depth of more than 1 meter and there is no damage. Although the exact depth is not specifically mentioned in the standard test, you will find that some manufacturers do list them. For example, our Lighting Speaker Ball Lamps have an IP67 degree of protection, which means they can be used normally in a swimming pool and will not be damaged even under 1 meter of water. The iPhone 12 Pro also has an IP68 protection rating, which means it will be completely immersed in water without worrying about damaging the phone, and Apple says it can survive in water up to 6 meters.

In other words, if one of your instruments has IP68, congratulations, it provides the highest Ingress Protection Rating in terms of dust and water resistance. At least in terms of IP rating certification.

IP = protection class

6 = dust-proof

8 = Submerge the survivor in 1 m or deeper water for a long time

What Product Need Ingress Protection?

Which products need intrusion prevention?

In the United States and Canada, many products regulated by engineering standards (such as UL or CSA standards) must be marked with an ingress protection rating. These products include various products in various industries that must be kept free of dust or moisture.

The following are the products that require Ingress Protection:

1. Traditional products must have waterproof and dust-proof requirements, such as LED lights, outdoor lights, cameras, etc. These are requirements for air tightness testing.

2. Newly developed various new smart products have also begun to have more specific requirements for waterproof performance, such as smart bracelets, smart watches, Bluetooth speakers, etc.

Products need ingress protection

3. Products that have upgraded their original functions and added additional requirements for waterproof, dust-proof, and sealing, or have improved Ingress Protection Rating, and previously had no special requirements for waterproof, dust-proof and sealing performance. Such as smart phones, sports speakers, Bluetooth headsets, diving watches, diving cameras, electric toothbrushes, motors, electric shavers, waterproof sockets, etc.

Ingress Protection Rating Testing

What Is Ingress Protection Testing?

Intrusion prevention test (or IP test) refers to the test of the product’s ability to resist “intrusion” (ie penetration of water, dust and foreign matter). The common Ingress Protection Rating test standard is 60529 (International Electrotechnical Commission). The following are other common IP test standards:

Ingress Protection(IP) Rating Testing Standard

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5 Common Misconceptions about Ingress Protection(IP) Rating

Being soaked in water does not mean that it can be jetted by water. VS can be jetted by water, and it does not mean that it can be soaked in water!

In IPX8, ingress of water in harmful quantity shall not be possible when the enclosure is immersed in water under defined conditions of pressure and time (up to 1 m of submersion). But there is no waterproof column spray test in the test items! In IPX5, water projected by a nozzle (6.3 mm) against enclosure from any direction shall have no harmful effects. It is mentioned here that the object is sprayed by the nozzle and has no harmful effects, which does not mean that it can be soaked in water

IP68 is not invincible

Many people think that my mobile phone with IP68 dust and water resistance is the highest Ingress Protection Rating. This is completely wrong!

Don’t think that your mobile phone is IP68 dust-proof and waterproof, so bravely use it in the swimming pool or use it as a paddle, or even use it in hot springs, bathing, or snorkeling. In fact, these are all wrong!

As mentioned earlier, all test standards are tested in clean water. There is chlorine and disinfectant in the swimming pool. In fact, it is not clean water, not to mention hot springs and sea water. The temperature during bathing is also wrong. Agent washing, none of these will work!

IP68 is not invincible

So, if you take your mobile phone into the swimming pool (the water in the swimming pool is chlorinated and disinfected, in fact, it is not clean water strictly speaking), and you are constantly tapping and pounding into the water due to the playing process, and some people even take it under the tap Or shower with water jet or shower head, then this will be very controversial!

Because it has the IP68 rating, it only means that it can be soaked in [1.5 meters of still water for 30 minutes], but it does not mean that it can withstand being splashed by water or being sprayed by a low-pressure water jet. Because of the splash-proof and low-pressure water jet, it is also It is a different test level!

Therefore, in many original factory certification standards, the IP68 is taken to flush under the faucet. This behavior does not belong to the scope of reasonable use, so it will not be guaranteed!

Waterproof is time-sensitive, and having a high level of waterproofing does not mean forever

see water corrosion 2

Any product has waterproof protection, mainly by adding waterproof membranes and waterproof tapes to the inner layer and gaps of the parts, but these protective mechanisms usually use oily waterproof materials, if they pass through sea water, hot spring water, soap, detergent, etc. Water with a pH value and high salinity has the opportunity to change, weaken, or even fail in the waterproof material over time. Even the waterproof tape will become brittle and weakened due to time, which may cause the loss of the waterproof effect. Sports waterproof product manufacturers will also mark the service life or remind you that you must replace the waterproof tape for about a year. This is the reason, so the waterproof function is not forever, and this should be paid special attention!

Dropping the machine or soaking in sea water may cause the waterproof function to fail

Soaking in sea water, hot spring water or cleaning solvents may cause damage or deterioration of the waterproof tape due to the pH value. If the phone or device is “falled” over, the body may lose its tightness due to impact. Effect, and then create a gap into the water! So if your phone has been accidentally dropped, it is recommended not to soak in water in the future for safety!

see water corrosion

That is to say, the product is marked with IP68 dust/waterproof protection rating, which means that it can be used for 30 minutes in a static clean water environment, but it is used in swimming pools, rivers (fresh water) and under the tap. Shocks such as taps or splashes on the water surface do not actually belong to the IP68 rating content, and may or may be damaged!

However, any Ingress Protection Rating is not suitable for washing at the beach, hot springs, hot baths or washing with detergents. Even if soaked in a completely clean water environment, you cannot use the hot air of a hair dryer to dry any wet parts, because the temperature may make waterproof If the glue deteriorates or deteriorates, these improper use may also be classified as [man-made damage] and lose the warranty!

Pay attention to the warranty conditions of each product and brand! Use in non-clean water environment will not be guaranteed, nor will it be guaranteed if dropped

Don’t think that having IP68 protection is invincible, this is wrong!

There are different test standards for different Ingress Protection Rating, and each Ingress Protection Rating is also certified separately, independent of each other and not related to each other, and all waterproof mechanisms are tested in a clean water environment, with different water quality, temperature, waterproof membrane, and waterproof The age limit, and if the product has been dropped or hit, it may cause the body or the latch to deform and cause the waterproof mechanism to not be tight. These must be paid attention to!

Additional letters / classifications

In addition to the IP00~IP68 mentioned above, there is actually a higher level of Ingress protection rating, which is IP69(K). IP69K was originally designed for road vehicles such as automobiles, but what I did not expect is the rapid popularity of food and beverage equipment manufacturing. Finally, IEC also added IP69K to the 60529 standard.

Definition of IP69K:

IP69K refers to the standard for checking that the equipment is intact within a certain period of time under the environment of high-temperature and high-pressure water.

How is the instrument usually tested?

1.IP69K Rating equipment must be intact and work normally under high pressure and steam cleaning conditions.

2.The test specifies a nozzle to spray the instrument, which injects 80°C water at a flow rate of 80-16 C/min at 80-100 bar (~1160-1450).

3.The nozzle maintains a distance of 10-15 cm from the device under test at an angle of 0°, 30°, 60° and 90°, and the angle is adjusted every 30 seconds. 4.The test equipment sits on a turntable, which rotates every 12 seconds, that is, 30°/s.

Waterproof vs Water-Resistant vs Water-Repellent

What Does Water-Resistant Mean?

The water-resistant protection level is the lowest among the three. However, there may be two other ways to improve protection. First, it may have a more waterproof device built-in, which can effectively protect the equipment from water damage. Second, the surface of the device may be coated with a hydrophobic substance, which can also play a role in waterproofing. Of course, the worst case is that there are neither, so the protection of such equipment is relatively poor.

What Does Water-Repellent Mean?

Water-repellent is based on the surface coating material used by the equipment. If a manufacturer claims that their equipment or product is water-repelletn, then the surface material is very special. Generally, some kind of thin-film nanotechnology can achieve this kind of material hydrophobicity. However, in practical applications, such water repellents are rare.

What Does Waterproof Mean?

Water-proof is more common, and we have also talked a lot about it. It has many different waterproof grades from IP00 to IP69K, and different grades have different waterproof effects. It depends on what kind of waterproof effect you want.

What is your Product Ingress Protection Rating?


We usually provide customers with IP67 rated products. But we can also achieve any Ingress Protection Rating, depending on what kind of waterproof effect you want to achieve, we can customize your Ingress Protection Rating. From IP00 to IP68, we can achieve different Ingress Protection Rating through different design schemes and methods.

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