IP Ratings Explained

What Does an AED's "IP" Rating Mean?

Every AED has an "IP Code" which can usually be found in the AED brochure or user's manual. The "IP Code" stands for "International Protection Rating" or "Ingress Protection Rating" which classifies the level of protection that electrical appliances (like AEDs) provide against the intrusion of solid objects or dust, accidental contact, and water.
To be clear it has NOTHING to do with how well a particular device can withstand a drop or shock.

The code is expressed as IPXX with "X" being numbers. For example, you may find an AED on the AED Superstore website that has an "IP" Rating of 55.

The first numerical digit indicates the level of protection against solid particles such as dust, dirt or other matter. The second numerical digit indicates the level of protection from harmful ingress of water. The higher the value of each number the higher the resistance to these contaminants. AEDs with lower values are more likely intended for use in offices, schools, churches and similar "carpeted areas." AEDs with higher numerical "IP" ratings are designed for use anywhere, but especially in environments where dust and moisture could be prevalent. You can use an AED's "IP" number to determine if it's built for the environment you intend to use it or store it in. If you find an AED that has a letter "X" in its "IP" Rating, it means a value has not been assigned for that type of ingress. For example, you may find an AED with an "IP" Rating of "X4."

Here's the scale you can refer to as you compare AED models:

First Number       Effective Against

        0                  No protection against contact and ingress of objects

        1                  Any large surface of the body, such as the back of a hand,
                            but no protection against deliberate contact with a body part

        2                  Fingers or similar objects

        3                  Tools, thick wires, etc.

        4                  Most wires, screws, etc.

        5                  Dust protected--Ingress of dust is not entirely prevented,
                            but it must not enter in sufficient quantity to interfere with
                            the satisfactory operation of the equipment

        6                  Dust tight--No ingress of dust; complete protection against contact

The second numerical digit indicates the level of protection
from harmful ingress of water:

Second Number    Effective Against

        0                    Not protected

        1                    Dripping water

        2                    Dripping water when tilted up to 15 degrees

        3                    Spraying water

        4                    Splashing water

        5                    Water jets

        6                    Powerful water jets

        7                    Immersion up to 1 meter

        8                    Immersion beyond 1 meter