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Plastic Materials Testing

Our program provides third-party certification about the standards and properties of your plastic materials through a series of evaluations and analytical tests.

A machine testing a piece of plastic.

Plastic products need to be tested to ensure that they meet a very specific set of regulatory safety and quality standards. Our testing program does just that by evaluating and analyzing the standards and properties of your plastic materials.

Our evaluations include the determination of material flammability (burning characteristics), ignition characteristics from various thermal and electrical sources, and electrical tracking. Our team is also equipped to test for property retention, specifically as it relates to long-term exposure to elevated temperatures (air-oven aging), water, ultraviolet light, cold and other outside influences. With so many resources at our fingertips, additional electrical characteristics and analytical tests can be easily be performed at your request.

Standards and properties evaluated by UL Solutions include:

Combustion (Fire) tests

UL Solutions' plastics testing laboratories can carry out the following combustion (fire) tests for you.

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UL 94 flammability

There are two preselection test programs conducted on plastic materials to measure flammability characteristics. The first program determines the material’s tendency to either extinguish or spread the flame once the specimen has been ignited. The program is described in UL 94, the Standard for Tests for Flammability of Plastic Materials for Parts in Devices and Appliances, which is now harmonized with IEC 60707, 60695-11-10 and 60695-11-20 and ISO 9772 and 9773.

The second program measures the ignition resistance of the plastic to electrical ignition sources. The material’s resistance to ignition and surface tracking characteristics is described in UL 746A, which is similar to the test procedures described in IEC 60112, 60695 and 60950.

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UL 746A ignition tests

In addition to flammability considerations, a material’s ability to resist ignition from electrical sources is another important factor that must be considered in the selection and evaluation of a material for use in electrical equipment. Possible electrical ignition sources in equipment include:  overloaded (overheated) electrical conductors and components; arcing parts, such as the open contacts of switches and relays; and arcing at broken or loose connections, e.g., splices or terminals. Polymeric materials in direct contact with or in close proximity to overloaded or arcing electrical parts could ignite.

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Why UL Solutions

We are a leading global provider for the production of test specimens, and testing and certification services for innovative plastics.

We have been testing plastics since 1941 and are proud to serve all of the world’s top plastics manufacturers. We work closely with plastic industry stakeholders to maintain and enhance existing UL Standards, establish new Standards, and develop certification and testing programs that address emerging technologies and product applications.

With over a century of expertise in safety science reaching back to 1894 and in-depth experience across numerous industries, UL Solutions is uniquely positioned to provide a complete view of how products function within a given system. This is particularly critical in the plastics and components industry, as interactions between substances, parts, systems and the environment in which they are expected to function can be the cause of a significant number of hazards and failures which are rarely apparent when components are tested individually.

Our worldwide presence allows UL Solutions to provide local services with a global outlook and enables access to a network of experts in all of our customer’s target markets. We support our customers in their drive to protect public safety and brand value, mitigating their risk with quality assurance and supply chain compliance services. Our trustworthy reputation provides an important product differentiator in a crowded marketplace, communicating safety and quality to original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), purchasers and regulatory authorities.

Portable equipment flowcharts