LED LIGHTING CERTIFICATIONS: WHAT DO THEY MEAN?
While consumers are learning more about LED lighting, there are still many questions to be answered. Many LED products lack minimum safety, environmental and performance standards, leaving consumers unsure about product reliability. Thankfully, there are a number of recognized LED lighting certifications that consumers can rely upon. Let’s take a look at some of these certifications, and what they actually mean for consumers.
UL (Underwriters Laboratories) is an American safety and consulting company offering services in 104 countries worldwide. Established in 1894, UL first gained recognition by drafting safety standards and conducting safety analysis for electrical devices and components as the rise of residential electricity transmission made electronics ubiquitous in American households.
As an LED lighting certification, UL Listed means that UL has tested representative samples of the product and determined it meets UL’s requirements based on its published Standards for Safety. The safety certification may also include additional information, meaning the product is UL Listed for Canada and the U.S.
The UL logo used alone on packaging means the product and all its components have successfully passed UL examination as a working unit.
LED lights that are UL Listed are safe for use in your home or business. Here is the UL Listed Website if you’d like to read more.
This marking means that the manufactured product meets EU safety, health and environmental standards that have been stipulated by legislation. Products demarcated with CE are not necessarily produced in Europe, but the marking means they can legally be sold there.
All LED lights sold in Europe must carry the CE mark, which is often awarded by authorized third party organizations.
Here is the CE mark website.
The CSA (Compliance, Standards, Accountability) Group is a Canadian standards development organization that accredits products to a wide range of standards certification from many different organizations. CSA marks in lighting can provide product evaluation, energy efficiency verification, test and certification, and quality standards certification for the lighting industry.
CSA markings ensure that an LED light meets certain product standards, such as energy efficiency metrics set by Energy Star. CSA is recognized by many government agencies including the EPA.
Here is the CSA Group Website.
RoHS Compliancy means the product does not exceed maximum levels for six restricted materials including lead, mercury, cadmium, hexavalent chromium, polybrominated biphenyls, and polybrominated diphenyl ethers.
Consumers who see the RoHS marking can be confident that their LED lights don’t contain unacceptable levels of the restricted materials listed above.
The ETL mark is featured on millions of products sold by major retailers.
About cULus Underwriters Laboratories (UL) is a nationally recognized, third party independent product safety certification organization. UL is also affiliated with the Underwriters’ Laboratories of Canada (cUL). The Canadian National Electrical Code and laws in the majority of states, require that lamps and fixtures be tested by a recognized, independent safety-testing agency before they can be sold and installed legally and safely.
Officially becoming the Canadian Standards Association (CSA) in 1944. then in 1946, the CSA Certification Mark was officially registered, now internationally recognized CSA’s marks appear on billions of products worldwide.
Recently, additional standards have been developed to more widely help in ensuring product quality, safety and more notably environmental sustainability and efficiency. These standards commonly include:
Design Lights Consortium
International commercial LED lighting qualification program, managed by Northeast Energy Efficiency Partnerships (NEEP), the DLC QPL (http://www.designlights.org) provides a platform for manufacturers to submit products for qualification and for utilities and energy efficiency programs to distinguish high performing products for use in their incentive efforts.