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lighting product. As shown in table 2, the IP ratings are far more stringent to achieve various levels of protection. That is not to say that the UL wet location testing procedures are invalid (it is still a viable listing used today); however, IP testing — and achieving the various levels of protection — can ensure the durability of a lighting product when exposed to the outdoor elements. In addition to water, IP ratings introduced solid particle intrusion limitations as well.


Understanding IP Ratings


The IP rating consists of the letters “IP” followed by two digits and an optional letter (the letter is rarely used). The first digit indicates the size of various solids that cannot penetrate into the product, and the second digit indicates the amount of liquids that, under certain pressures, cannot enter a product. The digits represent a range and indicate conformity with the conditions summarized in tables 1 and 2. For example, an electrical socket rated IP65 is protected against ingress of dust and will not allow water projected by a nozzle against enclosure from any direction to penetrate the enclosure or have any harmful effects. IP ratings are now frequently used for both lighting fixtures and certain outdoor use lamps, such as a multifaceted reflector lamp at 1¾ inches (MR16), a parabolic aluminized reflector lamp with a 4.5-inch diameter (PAR36) and JC products, referring to low voltage halogen bulbs. Although they cost a little more than traditional products, lamps and fixtures with these ratings are certain to outperform products without IP ratings in outdoor environments.


Example of


an IP65 rated JC LED Bi-Pin by Halco


The Benefits of IP Ratings


An IP-rated lamp or fixture provides an added level of confidence to installers that the system they install will perform as they specified for their clients. To home and building owners, it’s the peace of mind that their homes or businesses will be illuminated for many trouble-free years.


Michael Grzywacz is the national sales manager for Halco Lighting and Technologies. With


over 23 years of experience in the landscape industry, he has specialized in the landscape lighting industry for the past 15 years.


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