What does IP69K mean and why is it important when selecting a product?
The Ingress Protection (IP) rating system is an internationally recognized scale that relates to proven protection against environmental factors such as liquids and solids. Ingress protection ratings can be identified by the letters IP, followed by two numbers. These numbers define the amount of protection a digital scale has against specified elements and its ability to resist foreign matter that could otherwise get inside the product and cause it to fail. The first number refers to the amount of protection a scale or indicator enclosure has against solid matter (such as dust particles), while the second number defines the level of protection against liquids. The larger each digit is, the greater the protection.
|First number – Protection against solids|
|1||Protected against solid objects greater than 50 mm.|
|2||Protected against solid objects greater than 12 mm diameter.|
|3||Protected against solid objects greater than 2.5mm diameter.|
|4||Protected against solid objects greater than 1.0mm diameter.|
|6||Dust tight. No Ingress of dust.|
|Second number – Protection against liquids|
|1||Protected against vertically dripping water.|
|2||Protected against dripping water when tilted up to 15°.|
|3||Protected against spraying water at an angle of up to 60° from vertical.|
|4||Protected against splashing water when the enclosure is tilted at any angle up to 15°.|
|5||Protected against water jets from any direction|
|6||Protected against heavy seas or powerful jets of water.|
|7||Protected against the effects of short term immersion (under defined conditions of pressure and time).|
|8||Protected against submersion (under conditions specified by the manufacturer).|
|9k||Protected against close-range high pressure, high temperature spray downs.|
The IP69K rating provides protection against ingress of dust and high temperature, high pressure water – making products with this certification ideal for use in conditions where equipment must be carefully sanitized.
In industries such as food processing, where hygiene and cleanliness is paramount, equipment must be able to withstand rigorous high pressure, high temperature wash-down procedures.
In many industries, where dust and dirt can be an issue, it is important to ensure that dust cannot penetrate the casing of a product and cause it to fail.
The IP69K rating is the highest protection available.
In environments that require heavy washdown, such as in the food processing industry, the combination of water, chemicals, high pressures and temperatures can prove fatal for electronic circuits and instrumentation. The IP69K rating offers complete assurance that the piece of equipment that has undergone that tests is both durable and resistant and conforms to the highest protection rating on the scale.
Products bearing the IP69K rating undergo a challenging set of tests to ensure that they offer protection against penetration of high pressure, high temperature water and dust.
The water intrusion tests themselves are done by placing the product on a turntable with a rotational speed of 5 ±1 revolutions per minute. The product is then sprayed at close range at a rate of approximately 4 gallons/16 liters per minute with water pressure of between 1160-1450 psi, at a temperature of 176°F/80°C.
The nozzle from which the water is sprayed is held between 4 and 6 inches from the product, at a variety of angles. Following this rigorous testing procedure, the product is deemed as having successfully achieved the rating if it completely resists water ingress.