Technical Articles

What is UL standard 498?

UL standard 498 is a safety standard published by Underwriters Laboratories (UL) for Attachment Plugs and Receptacles. It covers the safety requirements for plugs, cord connectors, and receptacles that are used to connect electrical devices and appliances to power sources.

The UL 498 standard ensures that these electrical components meet certain criteria for mechanical strength, grounding provisions, insulation resistance, protection against electric shock, and other safety features. It covers various types of plugs and receptacles, including standard household plugs (also known as NEMA plugs), industrial plugs, and specialty plugs.

UL standard 498, titled "Attachment Plugs and Receptacles," provides detailed safety requirements for plugs, cord connectors, and receptacles used in electrical connections. The standard is intended to ensure that these components meet safety criteria and function properly to prevent hazards like electric shock and fire.

Here are some key aspects covered by the UL 498 standard:

1. Mechanical strength: The plugs, cord connectors, and receptacles must be constructed to withstand normal usage without breaking or becoming loose.

2. Grounding provisions: Proper grounding is crucial to prevent electric shock. The standard requires that grounding provisions be included in the design and construction of these components.

3. Insulation resistance: The plugs and receptacles must provide adequate insulation between live parts and accessible surfaces to prevent electrical leakage or shock. This helps protect users from coming into direct contact with the electrical current.

4. Protection against electric shock: UL 498 specifies safety features, such as the design of the plug blades and receptacle contacts, to prevent accidental contact with live electrical parts.

5. Durability and heat resistance: The standard defines requirements for the durability and heat resistance of these components, ensuring that they can withstand normal usage and operate safely under different environmental conditions.

6. Testing and compliance: Manufacturers are required to test their products against the criteria outlined in UL 498 and obtain UL certification to demonstrate compliance with the standard.

By adhering to UL 498, manufacturers can assure users that their plugs, cord connectors, and receptacles have undergone rigorous testing and meet recognized safety standards. Additionally, compliance with UL standards is often a requirement for commercial and residential building codes, ensuring the safety of electrical installations.



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