Marking & Labeling Systems - FAQ
The following are frequently asked questions related to Marking & Labeling Systems that are intended to display safety and warning related information on products.
Further information can be obtained by contacting a member of UL's customer service team by accessing the Customer Service page. Customer service advisors are available world-wide to answer questions, provide information and assist customers as they work with UL.
How does the Marking & Labeling Systems program differ from the Authorized Label Supplier program?
The Marking & Labeling Systems program covers labels that have been submitted and found to meet UL's permanence of marking requirements for displaying safety-related information on end-products. The Marking & Labeling System program does not cover requirements concerning UL Certification Marks that may be printed on the labels. The Authorized Label Suppliers program specifically addresses the printing format and distribution of the UL Certification Mark.
When the UL Certification Mark and required safety-related information are printed on the same label (referred to as a combination or custom label), the label supplier must be an Authorized Label Supplier and the label must meet the performance requirements covered by the Marking & Labeling Systems program for that UL certified end-product. To determine if a label supplier has coverage in both the Marking & Labeling System program and Authorized Label Suppliers program, a search of the company name on the Online Certifications Directory can be conducted to confirm enrollment in both programs.
Contact your local UL label center for more information about the Authorized Label Supplier program and the proper use of UL Marks. For inquiries regarding Marking & Labeling Systems, contact Customer Service.
Who is responsible to verify information that is printed on a UL label or packaging?
The Label Center reviews the UL Certification Marks according to the process documented in the printing UL Marks guide. Learn more.
The UL engineer that handles the end-product submittal reviews engineering markings, cautionary marks, and informs clients of label performance requirements.
Promotional and advertising materials are required to follow the guidelines UL has specified here.
What Conditions of Acceptability must a Marking & Labeling System meet?
The Conditions of Acceptability (typically application surface and uses) that labels are required to meet are governed by the end product Standard and determined by the UL engineer who investigated the end-product. End-product manufacturers should reference the specific requirements written in the UL Report for their product or in the applicable UL Standard. They may also contact the Project Engineer who handles the engineering investigation of their product for additional guidance. Label suppliers interested in determining a customer's label requirements should request that information directly from their customer.
How can I find and verify that a label printer can supply Recognized Marking & Labeling Systems and where can I find the Conditions of Acceptability for their labels?
A database of Marking & Labeling System suppliers and the associated Conditions of Acceptability can be found by visiting the Online Certifications Directory. Please note UL does not divulge information about the specific construction of Recognized labels or recommend specific label suppliers.
I am a label printer; how can I know if the labels I provide a customer are required to be Recognized under the Marking & Labeling Systems program?
The customer should specify that the label must be a Recognized Marking & Labeling System and should indicate the Conditions of Acceptability (e.g. application surfaces, indoor or outdoor use, temperature ratings, additional exposures, etc) for which the label must be suitable.
I am a manufacturer of UL certified end-products. My Follow-Up Service Procedure specifies the use of a Recognized (PGDQ2) Marking and Labeling System. Can I use a Recognized (PGJI2) Printing Material instead?
A Recognized (PGJI2) Printing Material when printed with one of the inks mentioned in its Recognition is considered equivalent to a Recognized (PGDQ2) Marking & Labeling System, because both are compliant with UL 969, Standard for Marking and Labeling Systems. Similarly for cUL Listed or Classified end-products, a Recognized (PGJI8) Printing Material certified for Canada when printed with one of the inks mentioned in its Recognition is considered equivalent to a Recognized (PGDQ8) Marking & Labeling System, because both are compliant with CSA C22.2 No. 0.15, Adhesive Labels.
As with Recognized (PGDQ2/8) Marking & Labeling Systems, acceptance of a Recognized (PGJI2/8) Printing Material/ink combination in a particular end-product application involves verifying that the Recognition covers the end-product requirements, such as application surfaces, temperature ratings, and other use conditions.
I am a manufacturer of UL certified end-products. What if I choose to use a label that is not UL Recognized or a label that is Recognized, but does not meet the Conditions of Acceptability required for my product?
If the label you select for your end-product is not UL Recognized or is Recognized but its Conditions of Acceptability do not cover your particular end-product application, an Unlisted Component evaluation is provided to the end-product manufacturer, rather than component supplier, to determine the acceptability of the label. Learn more.
What samples are needed for Marking & Labeling System evaluations?
UL selectively tests labels of similar construction to represent a range of label constructions when certain commonalities exist. This helps to reduce cost and time to market for label suppliers. During the early stages of the project, a UL Engineer will provide a list of the required representative samples and quantity required. Learn more.
Is there a basic Marking & Labeling Systems test program and specific label materials requirements?
The most basic (minimum) label test program would involve testing on a single application surface for Indoor or Indoor Dry Use. Larger test programs would include multiple application surfaces and/or additional uses, such as Outdoor Use, Lubricating Oil, etc. The Marking & Labeling System standard only specifies performance requirements for adhesive attached labels, not specific label material requirements.
How are direct surface-applied markings evaluated?
For direct surface-applied markings (etched, ink-stamped, die-stamped, painted, etc.), the requirements for durability and legibility are specified in the UL standard covering the particular end-product being investigated.
Are Marking & Labeling Systems evaluated for electrical ratings, flammability ratings, or for structural strength?
In the Marking & Labeling Systems program, UL evaluates labels only with respect to permanence of marking requirements and not flammability, electrical, or structural performance. If a label is used in an application where an electrical rating or flammability rating is required, or is used to bond structural parts together, these issues would be addressed during the end-product evaluation with the complete equipment.
Adhesives intended for use in bonding structural parts or components are covered under the Polymeric Adhesive Systems, Electrical Equipment-Component program (category code QOQW2).
Electrical and flammability ratings for polymeric materials are covered under the Plastics-Component program (category code QMFZ2).
Are membrane switches covered under the Marking & Labeling Systems program?
No. Adhesive-attached membrane switches that control appliances and electrical equipment are covered under the Membrane Switches program (category code WHSM2).
What printing equipment can an end-product manufacturers use to add information to a Recognized Marking & Labeling Systems Printing Material?
For thermal transfer ribbons, laser toners, and hot stamping foils, any printing equipment is considered compatible if it is capable of producing legible printing with good initial adhesion of ink to label material. Other types of printing processes may require the end product manufacturer to use a specific printer and ink combination that is referenced in the Recognition. The Marking & Labeling Systems program does not cover additional printing using hand implements, such as pen, marker, or pencil.
What are UL's traceability requirements for off-site molding facilities of In Mold Marking & Labeling Systems labels (PGIM2 and PGIM8)?
Do unprinted Marking & Labeling System Materials require further evaluation before being used with an end-product?
Printed labels made from Recognized label materials (blank label stocks, laminating adhesives, overlaminations) are not automatically considered Recognized printed labels. To be considered suitable for use on an end-product, the complete printed label must be submitted to UL for evaluation. Depending on several factors such as the Conditions of Acceptability desired for the label and the label materials used, testing of representative samples usually is necessary.
Are application surface blends (e.g. PC/ABS blend) for Marking & Labeling System investigated?
Labels suitable for application to two or more plastic, painted, or powder painted surfaces are automatically considered suitable for application to blends of those surfaces in any ratio with Conditions of Acceptability common to the components of the blend. If a unique blended application surface is investigated, the specific blend and blend ratio is published as the application surface.
For example, a printed label suitable for the following two surfaces:
- Polycarbonate (PC) for Indoor use at a 80°C maximum rating
- Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) for Indoor & Outdoor use at 60°C maximum rating
is considered acceptable for PC/ABS blend for the common Conditions of Acceptability: Indoor Use at 60°C maximum rating.
Are label converters allowed to repackage and distribute already Recognized unprinted materials?
Companies who repackage Recognized unprinted label materials and wish to remark the products with the appropriate UL Mark to maintain traceability can be authorized to do so under UL's Repackaged Recognized Component program. Learn more.
The Repackaging program does not allow label repackagers (converters) to print on the repacked materials, add additional layers, change layers, manipulate the properties, or make other modifications to the label materials that are repackaged.
Does UL certify labels to the Canadian Standard?
UL tests products to the Canadian Standard, CSA C22.2 No. 0.15, "Adhesive Labels". Since the CSA Standard includes test methods that differ from UL 969, additional testing is necessary to grant a Canadian Recognition. Products found to be in compliance with the Canadian Standard are marked with the UL Recognition Mark for Canada.
Does UL test labels to other standards or requirements?
UL Verification Services can provide customized performance and verification testing of labels based on a buyer's defined parameters or customer-accepted specifications. These tests provide retailers and buyers, original design manufacturers, and original equipment manufacturers confidence in the quality and reliability of the labels they manufacture or source from suppliers. Contact Customer Service for additional assistance. Learn more.
How do I enroll in a UL program or submit a label for evaluation?
How do I advertise and promote the UL Programs I am in?
The UL Mark is a valuable marketing tool. It means your product has successfully met stringent standards for product safety compliance. For information on accurately promoting your UL product certification, please visit Show the UL Mark webpage.