Ingress Protection (IP) and it’s NEMA equivalent ratings.

What is Ingress Protection?

IP” stands for “ingress protection” This is the degree to which the instrument can withstand the invasion of foreign matter.

The IP protection capacity system was established by the IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission). It is the IEC standard 60529, used as a guide to help to protect the life of the instrument.

This can also help the engineer to make a more informed purchasing decision by ensuring that that piece of enclosure is designed to work in the environment (s) the user faces.

IP” capability comprises two digits, each signifying a separate feature. The naming indicates how far, how well the instrument is sealed against the invasion of foreign matter, both moisture and dust. The higher the number (s), the better the degree of protection.

What could typical IP54 capacity tell a buyer about a model’s application capabilities? If you want to sound completely knowledgeable, this is IP five-four, not fifty-four.

Note that the each digit refers to a separate capacity, not each other.

The first digit mentions particle ingress, reflecting the degree to which solid objects can enter the box. A level “5” indicates “dust protected” as well as invasion protection with a wire below 1.0 mm.

The 1st digit ranges from 0 to 6, reflecting in degrees the level of protection against the solid particles.

The 2nd digit ranges from 0 to 9 and indicates the protection against the water ingress.

First digit – Solid protection level.

0     No protection.
1     Protection against solid objects > 50 mm, such as a hand. 
2     Protection against solid objects > 12.5 mm, such as a finger. 
3     Protection against solid objects > 2.5 mm, such as tools. 
4     Protection against solid objects > 1.0 mm, such as wire or small screws. 
5     Dust resistant, limited protection from the ingress of dust, ingress of dust not sufficient to cause harm. 2 to 8 hours. 
6      Dust-tight, total protection from the ingress of dust 2 to 8 hours.

Second digit – Water protection level.

0     No protection.
1     Protection against vertically dripping water, some ingress permitted.
2     Protection against dripping water with enclosure tilted up to a 15° angle.
3     Protection against spraying water.
4     Protection against splashing water.
5     Protection against jets of water directed at the enclosure.
6    Water or heavy seas, Protection against powerful jets shall not enter in harmful quantities.  
7     Protection against effects of immersion in water up to 1 m for a period of 30 minutes.
8     Protection against effects of immersion in water up to 3 m for long periods.
9     Protection against high pressure and temperature water jet.

NEMA Equivalent IP ratings

NEMA Enclosure
type number.
IEC Classification.
1 IP 10
2 IP 11
3 IP 54
4 IP56
4 X IP66
6 IP 67
12 IP 52
13 IP 54

Author: Abraham Moses