We often present IP ratings for our switches but this
is probably a good time to refresh everyone’s understanding of this
important seal specification.
IP ratings tell us the ingress protection level or
resistance to entry of solids or liquids into an OTTO product. The
nomenclature is straightforward. "IP" is followed by two or
three digits which identify the protection level for that specific
component, e.g. IP68S.
The first digit (6 in our example) represents the
level of protection against solid objects. The range is 0 to 6, with
0 indicating that the unit has no protection and 6 indicating that
the unit is completely dust tight and will not allow entry (ingress)
of any solid objects.
The second digit (8) indicates the protection level
against liquids, ranging from 0 to 9. Again, 0 indicates that the
component has no protection while 8 indicates that the unit can be
immersed in water at a specific depth and for a specific length of
time. A 9K following the first digit indicates that the product has been
tested to withstand high pressure, high temperature water spray for
The last digit, or optional digit, is S meaning the
product is stationary or in the case of a switch, it is not operated
while under water. Occasionally an X will be noted in the IP rating.
This indicates that the product was not formally tested for ingress
in that specific category.
For an IP68S rated switch, it’s sealed dust tight and
watertight. Since we make products for demanding applications, most
of our products carry this seal rating, which is a significant
advantage over many of our competitors’ products.
Please download the IP Ratings Chart at the link in
the header of this message. It clearly explains each element in the
Ingress Protection scheme.