If you have gone to buy a mobile or other electronic device, you will have seen that some include IPX7 certification among their specifications , an international standard that establishes the degree of resistance that device has against dust and water. But really, what is the level of protection? Does this identification qualify them as submersible devices? Let’s go by parts.
What is IPX7?
IPX7 is a nomenclature based on the IP code of the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) 60529 Degrees of Protection , whose objective is to standardize the protection mechanisms against dust and water that certain electronic devices have. That is to say, it allows to know quickly and easily what is the level of protection offered by the container materials of said device against dust, dirt and water.
The structure consists of two letters followed by two numbers:
- The letters IP refer to the Ingress Protection standard .
- The first number indicates the level of protection against dust
- The second number shows the level of protection against water.
There are different numerical scales that measure resistance against dust and water. In the first case, this scale goes from 0 to 6, with 0 being the absence of protection and 6 being the maximum.
As for water, which is the section that interests us on this occasion, the numbering goes from 0 to 8:
- Level 0 : Does not protect anything.
- Level 1 : Protects from vertical dripping.
- Level 2 : Protects against dripping at a 15º angle.
- Level 3 : Protects from water spray.
- Level 4 : Protects from splashes of water.
- Level 5 : Protects from water jets.
- Level 6 : Protects from continuous jets of water.
- Level 7 : Protects against immersion up to a depth of one meter for no more than 30 minutes.
- Level 8 : Protects against complete and deep immersion in water, as indicated by the manufacturer.
This scale is not cumulative, since different scenarios are taken into account for each level. That is, a device with protection 8 does not mean that it also has the previous protections (from 1 to 7). If, for example, you buy a mobile with protection 8 against water, you can submerge it in a bathtub, but you cannot put it under the tap of water to clean it, unless the certification is IPX5/8.
In addition, the IEC code expressly refers to water and not to other liquids, such as cola drinks, for example.
So what protection does the IPX7 certificate offer?
In the case at hand (IPX7) and as seen above, we know that the X reveals that the device does not have any type of protection against dust, and that it has a level 7 protection against water. In other words, we can submerge said device in the water without fear of it being damaged, as long as the immersion time does not exceed half an hour and we do not sink it more than one meter .
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