IP Code

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Not to be confused with IP address or Intellectual property.

The IP Code, International Protection Marking, IEC standard 60529, sometimes interpreted as Ingress Protection Marking,[1] classifies and rates the degree of protection provided against intrusion (body parts such as hands and fingers), dust, accidental contact, and water by mechanical casings and electrical enclosures. It is published by the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC).[2][3]

The standard aims to provide users more detailed information than vague marketing terms such as waterproof. The digits (characteristic numerals) indicate conformity with the conditions summarized in the tables below. Where there is no protection rating with regard to one of the criteria, the digit is replaced with the letter X.

For example, an electrical socket rated IP22 is protected against insertion of fingers and will not be damaged or become unsafe during a specified test in which it is exposed to vertically or nearly vertically dripping water. Another example is the Sony Xperia Z Ultra, one of the first cellular phones to be IP-rated; it is rated at IP58 and marketed as "dust resistant" and can be "immersed in 1.5 meters of freshwater for up to 30 minutes".[4] and the Fluke 27 II & 28 II Digital Multimeters, rated at IP67, also with a high degree of resistance to dust and water.[5] IP22 or 2X are typical minimum requirements for the design of electrical accessories for indoor use.

Code breakdown[edit]

VIP verificationSolid particle protectionLiquid ingress protectionMechanical impact resistanceOther protections
VIPSingle numeral: 0–6Single numeral: 0–9Single numeral: 0–9Single letter
MandatoryMandatoryMandatoryNo longer usedOptional

Solid particle protection[edit]

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

LevelObject size protected againstEffective against
0No protection against contact and ingress of objects
1>50 mmAny large surface of the body, such as the back of a hand, but no protection against deliberate contact with a body part
2>12.5 mmFingers or similar objects
3>2.5 mmTools, thick wires, etc.
4>1 mmMost wires, screws, etc.
5Dust protectedIngress of dust is not entirely prevented, but it must not enter in sufficient quantity to interfere with the satisfactory operation of the equipment; complete protection against contact (dust proof)
6Dust tightNo ingress of dust; complete protection against contact (dust tight)

Liquid ingress protection[edit]

The second digit indicates the level of protection that the enclosure provides against harmful ingress of water.[6]

LevelProtected againstTesting forDetails
0Not protected
1Dripping waterDripping water (vertically falling drops) shall have no harmful effect.Test duration: 10 minutes

Water equivalent to 1 mm rainfall per minute

2Dripping water when tilted up to 15°Vertically dripping water shall have no harmful effect when the enclosure is tilted at an angle up to 15° from its normal position.Test duration: 10 minutes

Water equivalent to 3 mm rainfall per minute

3Spraying waterWater falling as a spray at any angle up to 60° from the vertical shall have no harmful effect.Test duration: 5 minutes

Water volume: 0.7 litres per minute
Pressure: 80–100 kPa

4Splashing of waterWater splashing against the enclosure from any direction shall have no harmful effect.Test duration: 5 minutes

Water volume: 10 litres per minute
Pressure: 80–100 kPa

5Water jetsWater projected by a nozzle (6.3 mm) against enclosure from any direction shall have no harmful effects.Test duration: at least 3 minutes

Water volume: 12.5 litres per minute
Pressure: 30 kPa at distance of 3 m

6Powerful water jetsWater projected in powerful jets (12.5 mm nozzle) against the enclosure from any direction shall have no harmful effects.Test duration: at least 3 minutes

Water volume: 100 litres per minute
Pressure: 100 kPa at distance of 3 m

6KPowerful water jets with increased pressureWater projected in powerful jets (6.3 mm nozzle) against the enclosure from any direction, under elevated pressure, shall have no harmful effects.Test duration: at least 3 minutes

Water volume: 75 litres per minute
Pressure: 1000 kPa at distance of 3 m

7Immersion up to 1 mIngress 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).Test duration: 30 minutes

The lowest point of enclosures with a height less than 850 mm is located 1000 mm below the surface of the water, the highest point of enclosures with a height equal to or greater than 850 mm is located 150 mm below the surface of the water

8Immersion beyond 1 mThe equipment is suitable for continuous immersion in water under conditions which shall be specified by the manufacturer. However, with certain types of equipment, it can mean that water can enter but only in such a manner that it produces no harmful effects.Test duration: continuous immersion in water

Depth specified by manufacturer, generally up to 3 m

9kPowerful high temperature water jetsProtected against close-range high pressure, high temperature spray downs.

Additional letters[edit]

The standard defines additional letters that can be appended to classify only the level of protection against access to hazardous parts by persons:

LevelProtected against access to hazardous parts with
ABack of hand

Further letters can be appended to provide additional information related to the protection of the device:

fOil resistant
HHigh voltage device
MDevice moving during water test
SDevice standing still during water test
WWeather conditions

Mechanical impact resistance[edit]

An additional number has sometimes been used to specify the resistance of equipment to mechanical impact. This mechanical impact is identified by the energy needed to qualify a specified resistance level, which is measured in joules (J). This has now been superseded by the separate 'IK code' specified in EN 62262.

Although dropped from the 3rd edition of IEC 60529 onwards, and not present in the EN version, older enclosure specifications will sometimes be seen with an optional third IP digit denoting impact resistance. Newer products are likely to be given an IK rating instead. However there is not an exact correspondence of values between the old and new standards.

Dropped IP levelImpact energyEquivalent drop mass and height
10.225 J150 g dropped from 15 cm
20.375 J250 g dropped from 15 cm
30.5 J250 g dropped from 20 cm
52 J500 g dropped from 40 cm
76 J1.5 kg dropped from 40 cm
920 J5.0 kg dropped from 40 cm
Impact energy
Equivalent impact
00UnprotectedNo test
010.15Drop of 200 g object from 7.5 cm height
020.2Drop of 200 g object from 10 cm height
030.35Drop of 200 g object from 17.5 cm height
040.5Drop of 200 g object from 25 cm height
050.7Drop of 200 g object from 35 cm height
061Drop of 500 g object from 20 cm height
072Drop of 500 g object from 40 cm height
085Drop of 1.7 kg object from 29.5 cm height
0910Drop of 5 kg object from 20 cm height
1020Drop of 5 kg object from 40 cm height

IPXX Codings[edit]

The letter X is used in any place in the code where specifying a digit is meant to be avoided (or indicates irrelevance based on the common application). Among other common IP ratings using the letter X are IPX4. IP2X is frequently used on electrical items to specify that the item must prevent finger access to live terminals, for example, in electrical sockets.

IP CodeMeaning & Test Standard
IPX0No special protection
IPX1Protected against falling water Equivalent to 3-5mm rainfall per minute for a duration of 10 minutes. Unit is placed in its normal operating position.
IPX2Protected against falling water when tilted up to 15 degrees - Same as IPX1 but unit is tested in 4 fixed positions - tilted 15 degrees in each direction from normal operating position.
IPX3Protected against spraying water - Water spraying up to 60 degrees from vertical at 10 liters/min at a pressure of 80–100 kN/m2 for 5 min.
IPX4Protected against splashing water - Same as IPX3 but water is sprayed at all angles.
IPX5Protected against water jets - Water projected at all angles through a 6.3 mm nozzle at a flow rate of 12.5 liters/min at a pressure of 30 kN/m2 for 3 minutes from a distance of 3 meters.
IPX6Protected against heavy seas - Water projected at all angles through a 12.5 mm nozzle at a flow rate of 100 liters/min at a pressure of 100 kN/m2 for 3 minutes from a distance of 3 meters.
IPX7Protected against water immersion - Immersion for 30 minutes at a depth of 1 meter.
IPX8Protected against water submersion - The equipment is suitable for continual submersion in water under conditions which are identified by the manufacturer.


German standard DIN 40050-9 extends the IEC 60529 rating system described above with an IP69K rating for high-pressure, high-temperature wash-down applications.[7] Such enclosures must not only be dust-tight (IP6X), but it must also be able to withstand high-pressure and steam cleaning.

The test specifies a spray nozzle that is fed with 80 °C water at 8–10 MPa (80–100 bar) and a flow rate of 14–16 L/min. The nozzle is held 10–15 cm from the tested device at angles of 0°, 30°, 60° and 90° for 30 seconds each. The test device sits on a turntable that rotates once every 12 seconds (5 rpm).

The IP69K test specification was initially developed for road vehicles, especially those that need regular intensive cleaning (dump trucks, cement mixers, etc.), but it also finds use in other areas (for example, the food industry and car wash centers).

NEMA rating[edit]

The National Electrical Manufacturers Association defines enclosure types in NEMA standard number 250. Ratings are not directly equivalent between the two standards, but the following table outlines the NEMA ratings that would correspond to the performance required by an IP code. NEMA ratings also require additional product features and tests ( such as functionality under icing conditions, enclosures for hazardous areas, knock-outs for cable connections and others) not addressed by IP ratings.

IP CodeMin. NEMA Enclosure rating to satisfy IP Code

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Understanding the IP (Ingress Protection) Ratings
  2. ^ IEC 60529: Degrees of protection provided by enclosures (IP Code). International Electrotechnical Commission, Geneva.
  3. ^ IP Ratings vs. NEMA Ratings
  4. ^ Sony Xperia Z Ultra LTE
  5. ^ Rugged Multimeters: Fluke 27 II/28 II Industrial Multimeters
  6. ^ Ingress Protection: The System of Tests and Meaning of Codes .
  7. ^ DIN 40050-9: Straßenfahrzeuge; IP-Schutzarten; Schutz gegen Fremdkörper, Wasser und Berühren; Elektrische Ausrüstung [Road vehicles; degrees of protection (IP-code); protection against foreign objects, water and impact; electrical equipment], May 1993 . An English translation of the German original is available from DIN.

External links[edit]