IP Ratings Explained

Image © Chloe Bromilow

What is an IP rating?

An IP rating is a way of showing how effective an item is at blocking out foreign bodies. The IP stands for Ingress Protection and the following numbers (i.e. IP67, IP56, etc) refer to the protection an item offers against the intrusion of the two categories of foreign bodies, i.e. solid (e.g. dust) and liquid (water).

Occasionally, you might see an ‘x’ in place of one of the numbers, this signals the reader that the IP rating has not been tested for that particular category (e.g IPX4 = liquid only).

First Digit

Solid Foreign Bodies

Protection against contact with solid
foreign bodies intruding into an enclosure.

Image © Matt Leeves

0 - No special protection

1 - Protection from a large part of the body such as a hand (but no protection from deliberate access); from solid objects greater than 50mm in diameter

2 - Protection against fingers or other object not greater than 80mm in length and 12mm in diameter

- Protection from entry by tools, wires, etc., with a diameter of thickness greater than 1.0mm

4 - Protection from entry by solid objects with a diameter or thickness greater than 1.0mm

5 - Protection from the amount of dust that would interfere with the operation of the equipment

6 - Dust tight

Second Digit

Liquid Foreign Bodies

Protection against the harmful
entry of various forms of moisture.

Image © Matt Leeves

0 - No special protection

1 - Protection from dripping water

2 - Protection from vertically dripping water

3 - Protection from sprayed water

4 - Protection from splashed water

5 - Protection from water projected from a nozzle

6 - Protection against heavy seas, or powerful jets of water

7 - Protection against immersion (up to 1 metre for 30 minutes)

8 - Protection against complete, continuous submersion in water

Example: What does IP67 mean?

Most Peli Cases are IP67 rated. Using the two lists above you can now see that IP67 means that an item is completely dust-tight and watertight up to depths of 1 meter for thirty minutes.