IPX Ratings: Why They’re Important

If you work with electronic devices, you’ve probably heard of IP ratings or IPX ratings – you’ve probably even seen an IP label on household devices like your cell phone or Bluetooth speaker.

You may not know exactly what an IP rating means, but you should. It can mean the difference between a safe, effective device and one that’s a clear hazard.

What is an IP Rating?

IP ratings, or Ingress Protection ratings, come from the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). Each of the two numbers in IP ratings corresponds to a different level of protection: the first indicates how well the device protects against solid particles like dust, and the second indicates how well it protects against liquid ingress, or water. Solid particle resistance is rated on a scale of 0-6, while liquid resistance is on a scale of 0-9. If a company hasn’t tested for resistance, the corresponding number is typically replaced with an X.

Why wouldn’t you test for both liquid and solid ingress?

There are several reasons you might see an X instead of a number on an IP rating.

  • Although both solid and liquid ingress can damage for electronics, liquid protection is often the larger concern with certain types of devices. Electrostatic sprayers, for example, are constantly exposed to liquid during use.
  • Remember that an X rating doesn’t mean a device has no protection – a high enough liquid ingress rating often helps protect against solid ingress as well.
  • Some devices may have extra protection that makes testing for dust unnecessary. Victory Innovations sprayer batteries are protected by a conformal coating.

What do the numbers mean?

Devices rated for protection against liquid ingress can range from IPX0, indicating no protection against liquid, and IPX9 – indicating that a device can withstand full submersion or powerful water jets. An IPX9 rating isn’t usually necessary for most electronic devices – you probably don’t take your computer mouse into the pool with you. But some level of protection against water is often crucial, especially for devices that hold or come in contact with liquid consistently.

For example, cordless electrostatic sprayers use batteries, and those batteries can potentially get wet if any dripping occurs. A wet battery poses a number of dangers, from damaging the device to harming the user. Even worse, if the battery on a device doesn’t have a sufficient IPX rating – or worse, has no rating at all – insurance may not cover any damages.

Victory Innovations sprayer batteries have an IPX4 rating, which means they can withstand splashes of liquid from any angle. Because Victory Innovations batteries have been independently tested and certified to the IEC standard, you don’t need to worry about liquid that may get on the sprayer as you’re working.



Want to learn more?

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