Specify Enclosures Which Offer A Choice Of IP Ratings

You’ll need an enclosure with a high IP rating for superior ingress protection. That much is obvious. But there are significant differences between the three key IP ratings for enclosures of this type:

  • IP 66 offers protection against temporary flooding in environments such as heavy seas. Test: Water sprayed against the enclosure from a powerful jet (under elevated pressure and from any direction) will have no harmful effects. (75 litres per minute at 1,000 kPa at a distance of three metres for at least three minutes.)
  • IP 67 is required if the enclosure will be fully immersed. Water must not seep into the enclosure in any quantity that could cause damage when the enclosure is submerged underwater temporarily. Test: immersion in water for 30 minutes to a depth of one metre (at the lowest point of the enclosure) or with the highest point 150 mm below the surface, whichever is deeper.
  • IP 69K protects against close-range high-pressure water jets and high-temperature spray downs. Test: 14-16 litres of water (at 80°C) is sprayed at 8-10 MPa at a distance of 0.1-0.15 metres for 30 seconds at each of four angles (two minutes in total).

It’s wise to choose an enclosure which offers a range of IP seals. That way you’ll have the option of later upgrading to seals with a higher rating if the working environment becomes more hazardous than first predicted.

Another key feature is ‘lid closed’ installation – separate channels for the lid screws and fixing screws. There’s no point specifying an IP 69K seal if you have to open the lid while you’re trying to install an enclosure in bad weather.


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