Technical Articles

What do IP ratings mean?


In today's highly connected world, electronic devices accompany us in every aspect of our lives. From smartphones to wearables, we rely on technology for communication, health monitoring, and entertainment. With this increased usage, it becomes crucial to understand how well these devices can withstand elements such as dust, water, or other potential hazards.

IP (Ingress Protection) ratings play a vital role in clarifying the level of protection an electronic device offers against these external factors. This article aims to demystify IP ratings, providing readers with a comprehensive understanding of the standards and what they actually mean.

What are IP Ratings?

IP ratings are a globally recognized system that classifies and rates the degree of protection provided by an enclosure or electronic device against intrusions such as dust, solid objects, water, and even mechanical impact. These ratings ensure that consumers are aware of a device's level of resistance and can confidently choose products suitable for their specific needs.

Breaking Down IP Ratings

The IP rating is a two-digit code. The first digit represents protection against solid objects, while the second digit signifies protection against liquids. Let's delve into each digit in detail:

1. The First Digit – Protection against Solid Objects

The first digit in an IP rating indicates how well a product is protected against solid particles such as dust, sand, or small objects. This digit ranges from 0 to 6, with higher numbers indicating a higher degree of protection. For example:

- IP0X: No specific protection against objects (not recommended for most commercial products).
- IP1X: Protection against large objects greater than 50mm in size.
- IP4X: Protection against most wires, screws, or similar small objects.
- IP6X: Total protection against dust particles, ensuring no ingress occurs under any circumstances.

2. The Second Digit – Protection against Liquids

The second digit refers to the protection a product offers against liquids, including water. Like the first digit, the second digit ranges from 0 to 9, with higher numbers indicating greater liquid resistance. For instance:

- IPX0: No specific protection against liquids (not recommended for most commercial products).
- IPX4: Protection against water splashes from any direction.
- IPX6: Protection against powerful jets of water.
- IPX8: Protection against continuous immersion in water under defined conditions.

Interpreting Combined IP Ratings

Once the first and second digits are known, they can be combined to form a complete IP rating. For instance, a device with an IP68 rating is completely protected against dust (6) and can withstand continuous immersion in water (8). The specific requirements for achieving each level of protection are defined by international standards.


Understanding IP ratings is crucial when selecting electronic devices for specific environments or activities. Whether it's a smartphone, smartwatch, or outdoor lighting system, IP ratings provide essential information about a device's ability to resist dust, water, or other foreign substances. By utilizing this standardized classification system, consumers are empowered to choose products that match their specific requirements and provide optimal reliability and durability.

As technology continues to evolve, IP ratings will remain a valuable tool in the realm of consumer electronics. Being aware of the IP rating system enhances consumer knowledge and ensures a seamless integration of electronic devices into daily life, regardless of the environment or situation.



Contact: Eason Wang

Phone: +86-13751010017


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