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When you are investing in an LED, you need to know how well it is protected against different substances. When you are aware if your LED can bear water and solid intrusion, you can easily take better care of it. IP rating plays an important role in this. With this standardized rating system, you can classify the level of protection your LED has.

 

What is IP Rating

IP Rating, also known as International protection rating or ingress protection rating, is an international standard of protection that a device should have against any type of ingress such as water, dust and other ingress etc. In simpler words, it represents a level of protection against foreign bodies. This system was standardized by the International electrotechnical Commission (IEC).

Basically, it’s a two-digit code with the first one establishing a level of protection against any ingress and the second one explaining the resistance against moisture. The first digit of the code has a scale ranging from 0 to 6. If the first digit is zero, then the device has no protection. If the IP is upto six, then the device has full protection.

 

The highest reading for the second digit is 8 and 0 is the lowest. With the reading of 8, the device has the highest protection and with zero, none. If the LED is advertised as waterproof, or dust proof then it must have a high IP rating. In case the IP Grade of LED display does not match the claim of the product, the device has been falsely advertised.

 

This system is recognized globally to classify the levels of protections of the device. Though there are some other rating systems as well, this one is the best recognized one. This system is mostly used in Asia and Europe. It’s also used in some parts of North America. If the equipment is not IP rated, it’s difficult to maintain the safety and avoid any risks.

 

Why is it important?

Buying any electronic device, especially an LED, is a huge investment. You don’t wanna waste your money on a product that has been falsely advertised. If a manufacturer makes a waterproof LED, how would he know if he was successful in making it waterproof?

For this reason, the LED is sent for testing. The testing company must be certified. Once the LED has been tested, the company gives an IP rating to the product based on how well it was protected against the foreign intrusion. An IP rating gives the manufacturer credibility. With this rating, manufacturers can easily claim about the level of protection.

 

It also gives assurance to the customer about what they’re buying. An IP rating informs the user of how well the LED works against the intrusion. Due to this, the user becomes aware of protective measures they should take so that the product can work safely without damage.

 

The IP Grade of LED Display should be based on your usage. If you need an outdoor LED for unsealed locations, then you will need a high IP rating against both dust and moisture. With an unsuitable rating, your LED will be at risk of getting damaged by rain and sandstorms. Lower IP ratings will work perfectly fine for indoor LEDs.

 

However, it is important to note that IP ratings are not enough in all cases. The protective coverings may wear out overtime due to harsh intrusion. . Don’t be careless with your LED just because it has high IP.

 

What do the digits in IP mean?

Both digits of IP rating have a special meaning assigned to each. The first digit represents the level of protection against solid intrusion and the second digital establishes the moisture protection level.

 

  • FIRST DIGIT CHART
First digitLevel of protectionExample
0None
1Protection solid objects of over 50mmTouch
2Protection against solid objects of over 12mmFinger
3Protection against solid objects of over 2.5mmWires and tools
4Protection against solid objects of over 1mmScrews, nails and wires.
5Protection against dustProtected against dust but it should not enter in enough to harm.
6Total protectionTotal protection against dust.

 

  • SECOND DIGIT CHART

 

Second digitLevel of protectionExample
0None
1Protection against dripping water falling verticallyCondensation
2Protection against direct spraysSprays or drops of water falling at the angle of 15 degrees
3Protection against spraying waterSprays of water falling at the angle of 60 degrees
4Protection against splashesSplashes of water at all angles
5Protection against jets of waterLow pressure jets of water
6Protection against high pressure jetsStrong jets of water
7Protection against immersion at 1m depthTemporary submersion at depth of 1 meter
8Protection against complete submersionComplete submersion at a depth of 1 meter or over.

 

 

Complete IP reference Chart.

IP RatingLevel of Protection
00No protection against solid or moisture intrusion
01No protection against solid but protection against condensation
02No protection against solid but protection against 15 degree spray
03No protection against solid But protection against 60 degrees sprays
04No protection against solid Protection against splashes
05No protection against solid butProtection against jets
06No protection against solid Protection against strong jets
07No protection against solid Protection against 1m immersion
08No protection against solid Protection against complete immersion
10Protection against touch but no moisture protection
11Protection against touch and condensation
12Protection against touch and 15 degree spray
13Protection against touch and 60 degrees sprays
14Protection against touch and splashes
15Protection against touch and jets
16Protection against touch and strong jets
17Protection against touch and 1m immersion

 

18Protection against touch and against complete immersion
20Protection against fingers but moisture protection
21Protection against fingers and condensation
22Protection against fingers and 15 degree sprays
23Protection against fingers and 60 degree sprays
24Protection against fingers and splashes
25Protection against fingers and jets
26Protection against fingers and strong jets
27Protection against fingers and immersion of upto 1m depth
28Protection against fingers and complete immersion
30Protection against wires and tools but no moisture protection
31Protection against wires and tools and condensation
32Protection against wires and tools and 15 degree sprays
33Protection against wires and tools and 60 degree sprays
34Protection against wires and tools and splashes
35Protection against wires and tools and jets
36Protection against wires and tools and high pressure jets
37Protection against wires and tools and immersion  of 1m depth
38Protection against wires and tools and complete immersion
40Protection against screws and wires but no moisture protection.
41Protection against screws and wires, and condensation
42Protection against screws and wires, and 15 degree spray
43Protection against screws and wires, and 60 degree spray
44Protection against screws and wires, and splashes
45Protection against screws and wires, and jets
46Protection against screws and wires, and strong jets
47Protection against screws and wires, and 1m depth immersion
48Protection against screws and wires, and complete immersion
50Protection against dust, but no moisture protection.
51Protection against dust and condensation
52Protection against dust and sprays falling in 15 degrees
53Protection against dust and 60 degrees sprays
54Protection against dust and splashes
55Protection against dust and jets
56Protection against dust and strong jets
57Protection against dust and 1m immersion
58Protection against dust and complete immersion.
60Total protection against dust but no moisture protection
61Total protection against dust and against condensation
62Total protection against dust and against 15 degrees sprays
63Total protection against dust and against 60 degrees sprays
64Total protection against dust and against splashes
65Total protection against dust and against jets
66Total protection against dust and against strong jets
67Total protection against dust and against 1m depth immersion
68Total protection against dust and against complete immersion.

 

What IP Rating do you need for your LED display?

IP Grade of LED Display display depends on your usage. If you need an LED display for outdoor use, then you would want it to be waterproof and dustproof. Since outdoor displays often witness rain, condensation and dust, it may be damaged if it does not have protection.

 

For outdoor LEDs, your display should have at least IP54 rating. However, IP65 is the ideal rating for outdoor displays. It’s quite easy to achieve this rating for screens but difficult to do so for the back of the displays where USBs are located.

 

Indoor LEDs don’t really need a high IP since they aren’t at high risk of moisture and dust intrusion.

 

Conclusion

By understanding the concept of IP rating, you can make an informed decision on the LED you want to buy. An unsuitable IP grade of LED display can put you at risk of loss since your LED display can be prone to damage when you are not following proper safety regulations depending on the IP.