How It’s Tested: Episode 12 – What Does It Mean to be UL Certified?

Our How it's Tested series explores safety standards and test methods for AR / FR garments and PPE. With Scott Margolin, Vice President of Technical as our guide, we examine many of the major tests to understand what they measure, how they measure it, and what that means to someone like you who is specifying or wearing the garment. Whether you are a seasoned professional or just starting out, explore all episodes in this series to make sure you are up to date on the latest information.


If you’ve been following our How it’s Tested series, you’ve learned about the four (4) main NFPA 2112 tests, and the “other” or lesser-known tests and our series continues with UL certification. Did you know that 2112 garment compliance requires third-party certification? But, the tests we’ve previously covered are fabric tests, so when we say a garment is certified, how does that differ?

Let’s begin with UL. The “UL” in UL Certification stands for Underwriter Laboratories. They are the most well-known third party offering NFPA 2112 certification. You might envision that UL performs actual testing, but this is not the case.

Instead, when Tyndale, or any other manufacturer, has a new garment ready for 2112 certification, documentation is submitted with complete details and specifications for the garment. This includes the type of fabric and all components, including thread, buttons, zippers, etc.

Prior to submitting garments for evaluation by UL, each manufacturer should submit components that have already passed NFPA 211 testing. As most garments are made with pre-qualified 2112-compliant materials and components, the primary role of UL in NFPA 2112 garment certification is to verify that all test data from each tested component was received, reviewed, and confirmed to meet or exceed NPFA 2112 criteria.

For help with understanding the UL certification process, let’s join Tyndale’s Vice President, Scott Margolin:

 

It’s important for this certification to be verified by an impartial third party, like UL, to confirm all data is accurate, each garment has been tested correctly, and there is a record of each test meeting or exceeding the NFPA 2112 standard.

Stay tuned for the next episode in our How it’s Tested series which explores the various tests for NFPA 2112-compliant rainwear. As we enter the spring and summer, inclement weather is inevitable. This rainwear post is a must read!

 

Series: How It's Tested - All Things Testing

Miss and episode, have a different hazard, or want information on a specific test? Visit our How It's Tested Hub to follow along with our series, binge all episodes, or pick and choose based on your hazard or area of interest.

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