IP rating, what and how it works

It is one of the most talked about technical specifications, especially with regard to wearable devices, but not everyone knows what one is talking about when mentioningLevel Electronic Identification Number. It is usually expressed in IPxx format, Where xx denotes a pair of numbers, denotes the resistance of the device with respect toBreaking into solid or liquid elements inside. But what does this number mean? Let’s find out together.

IP rating, what is it and how does it work?

Before starting, it is right to know the true meaning of the words.Level Electronic Identification NumberThe wording refers toAccess Protection“As expected it indicates the device’s ability to withstand penetration attempts by foreign elements, such as liquids and solids. Specifically, it refers to water and dust, among the main enemies of the health of our devices. This is defined by Standardized tests, Which the manufacturers themselves make in relation to the common levels, are able to provide more detailed notes than the classic definitions of “waterproof” or “dustproof”. Not only technological devices are based on this standard, but also other types of electronic products such as power sockets, lamps, and other things that can be affected by contact with these elements. Another feature is Standard reading mode. In fact, using an example of the IP68 standard, it is more correct to say six and eight than sixty-eight, given that the two numbers individually represent two properties of the object under analysis.

IP rating, how to decode

Level Electronic Identification NumberIt is not always easy to parse the specific IP rating code, due to the lot of information it contains, but in general it is possible to learn how to decode it in a few steps. Starting with IP, this abbreviation refers to an object’s ability to resist water or dust. On the other hand, numbers have a specific character: the first represents Fluid resistance, While the second is for i Solid. In some cases, X can be entered instead of numbers; In this case, it means that the object was not conferred a degree of protection with respect to the element that was taken into account or, simply, it had not undergone any specific test.

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IP ratings are for informational purposes. Although they are based on standardized tests, they are not necessarily of higher value in terms of resistance (Regarding the gauges we will see later) This indicates a high effective ability to resist the elements compared to others of lower values. Indeed, if the object had suffered PitfallsAnd the the fall a Harm For exterior, the IP rating values ​​may not be preserved. It is always recommended that you use devices with care, to avoid as much as possible the possibility of having to test the actual match between the IP rating and the actual capacity of your device. It is best to keep your appliances, especially those that are not used on a daily basis, in Dry places away from water and dust In contact with liquids, dry them immediately or follow the most appropriate behavior to avoid any risks arising from incorrect use of the tool.

IP rating, resistance to solid materials

Level Electronic Identification NumberAs expected, The first digit of the IP rating is the ability to resist penetration into solid materials Or parts that could pose a risk to the correct functioning of the object under study. This particularly refers to dust that over time may endanger the life of a device such as a smartphone, smartwatch or our favorite earphones. The numbers representing this value range from 0 to 6, as well as the X value related to the lack of specific data:

  • IP0X: There is no protection in the event of contact and ingress of solid objects
  • IP1X: Protected against solid objects with dimensions of about 50 mm
  • IP2X: Protected against solid objects with dimensions of about 12.5 mm
  • IP3X: Protected against solid objects with dimensions of about 2.5 mm
  • IP4X: Protected against solid objects with dimensions of approximately 1 mm
  • IP5X: Protected against limited entry of dust (the object is protected from dust)
  • IP6X: Protected against any dust leakage (body is dust resistant)
  • X: The data has not been evaluated by the test or not made available for this type of item.
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IP rating, fluid resistance

Level Electronic Identification NumberThe The second digit of the IP rating, Remember it refers to Protection from ingress of liquids. This doesn’t just mean water: in fact, there are other elements like this Sweat (Think headphones used during physical activity), then Is raining (External power take-offs) o Other fluids In the case of diving for the most varied causes. Compared with the previous classification, the solid material resistance rating, the following is of particularity. In fact, I am Values ​​higher than 6 It does not represent a natural evolution of the ability to avoid fluid penetration, but rather a true evolution Case history itself. In fact, it is not unusual to find products with a dual rating, such as IPX6 / IPX7, which indicates the ability to comply with both standards:

  • IPX0: No liquid leakage protection
  • IPX1: Protected against dripping vertically
  • IPX2: Protected against vertically falling or sloping water droplets up to 15 °
  • IPX3: It is protected from splashing up to 60 ° from the vertical
  • IPX4: Protected against splashing from any direction
  • IPX5: Protected against low pressure water jets
  • IPX6Protected against high pressure water jets
  • IPX7Protected against immersion in water up to 1 meter for 30 consecutive minutes
  • IPX8Protected against submersion in water from one to three meters under pressure for long periods of time
  • IPX9: Protected against high-powered water jets and high temperatures at close range
  • X: Uncategorized or no classification data for this type of item.

It is correct to specify that the references to the times indicated in the classification refer to Maximum time From the test performed on a specific object, with fresh water (Not the salt or chlorinated water that can corrode the body) and not the actual capacity of the body itself. In fact, the device can last up to 40 minutes underwater, despite its IP rating being IPX7.

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Samantha Arnold

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