IP protection grades – what the waterproof and dustproof standards for flashlights mean

When buying electronic equipment, we need to know exactly what it can do – the degree, durability and resistance to various negative factors. For the latter aspect, it is extremely important to read the IP protection classes correctly. This is because they give us the necessary knowledge of how rugged the equipment we are dealing with is. This is especially important for flashlights. Let’s learn more about it!

IP classes – what are they? Why are they so important?

The huge availability of electronic equipment makes us eager to buy various devices that make everyday life easier. When looking for the right product, we naturally pay close attention to appearance, ergonomics and technical specifications, but sometimes forget about aspects related to the device’s resistance to various conditions. This is especially important for flashlights, which should be designed to serve without hindrance in different environments. When choosing the right model, we should analyze whether we will actually have a use for it, or rather, its resistance is not very satisfactory. To find out, let’s assess how its IP rating is. This classification determines the degree of protection of electronic devices, including flashlights, against access to hazardous parts inside the housing. IP ratings also indicate the extent to which the flashlight housing prevents the ingress of foreign solids and water. By learning about these waterproof classes and IP waterproof classes, we will get the most important information about the durability of the equipment. So let’s find out what the different IP classes are!

IP classes – how to read them?

IP classes can initially seem quite complicated and incomprehensible, especially to people who have not dealt with them before. But no worries – this string of numbers has its logical justification. Now we are just going to explain it! Looking at the IP class, we first pay attention to the first digit after the IP code. It denotes the class of protection against access to the components inside the enclosure. Another number is the degree of protection, which determines the waterproof classes. Besides, there may also be letters in the IP code, although they are not mandatory. Behind the first one – an additional letter – is the information about protection against human access to hazardous parts. When is it applied? Only if the degree of protection is higher than that indicated by the first digit. The complementary letter, on the other hand, is used only in exceptional cases, where the degree of IP should be determined through additional tests and procedures.

IP protection classes – let’s learn the detailed designations

The letters are given optionally, as it is most common to encounter a designation that includes an IP code and two digits, such as IP44. This helps customers quickly know how rugged the equipment they are dealing with is. Let’s now get to know exactly what each number means. The first – as we mentioned – indicates the protection class against access to parts inside the housing. The number 0 is no protection, 1 – protection against foreign bodies with a minimum diameter of 50 mm, 2 – protection against much smaller foreign bodies of a minimum of 12.5 mm, 3 – a minimum of 2.5 mm, 4 – 1 mm, 5 – protection against penetration of foreign bodies with a minimum diameter of 1 mm, 6 – dust-proof protection. The second digit indicates the degree of waterproofness. And here the same – the higher, the better protection you can count on, except that here we have as many as 9 digits. From 0 – no protection, through 3 – protection against spraying water at any angle up to 60° from the vertical on any side, 5 – protection against a jet of water (12.5 l/min) poured on the housing from any side, up to the highest degree of protection, i.e. 9 – protection against flooding by a strong jet of water under pressure (80-100 bar and at a temperature of +80°C). In summary, IP ratings provide essential knowledge about the water and dust resistance of flashlights and other electronic equipment. This information allows you to choose the ideal device, one that will perform well during daily use. If you’re looking for a high-quality flashlight, take a look at MACTRONIC’s offerings.