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Plastics Testing and Certification

Your customers want to know one thing: your products are safe. That’s why our UL Recognized Component Mark is so important. It says a plastics material has been tested not just against minimum standards of safety, but against reputable and trusted standards in the industry.

A machine using electricity to test a piece of plastic.

Globally recognized partner in testing and certification of polymeric materials

Our expertise of the plastics industry enables us to help you verify that your standardized, engineering and high-performance polymeric materials comply with global standards. The standards we use for testing and certification aim to mitigate the risks of fire, electric shock, personal injury and environmental hazards. We work with companies involved in compounding, extrusion and injection molding as well as raw material producers and automotive manufacturers and their suppliers.

Our offerings are designed to reduce testing complexity while helping you meet quality and safety requirements.

  • Our specialized long-term thermal aging program for polymer variations helps reduce the time typically required to conduct relative thermal index (RTI) evaluations 
  • Our sample preparation services provide sample consistency which reduces delays and costs associated with flawed data from unreliable samples
  • Our development testing services identifies potential performance and compliance problems early in the production cycle, which may  help reduce costly late-stage remediation or recalls

We test to a number of standards, dependent on anticipated product use, including:

UL 94, Tests for Flammability of Plastic Materials for Parts in Devices and Appliances
UL 746A-D, Polymeric Materials - Short Term Property Evaluations
UL 746H, Outline of Investigation for Non-Halogenated Materials
UL 746R, Outline of Investigation for Restricted Use Substances in Polymeric Materials
UL 588, Standard for Seasonal and Holiday Decorative Products
CAN/CSA C22.2 No.0.17, Evaluation of Properties of Polymeric Materials

Capabilities

Particularly for polymers, UL Solutions is a known specialist with a global network of laboratories offering a diversified range of destructive and nondestructive testing in a fully automated start-to-finish sequence.

Basic testing program for plastics

The basic testing program for a UL Recognized Component involves three identification tests: Infrared Spectroscopy (IR), Thermogravimetric Analysis (TGA) and Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC).

Plastic materials testing

The evaluation of plastic materials may include the determination of material flammability (burning characteristics), ignition characteristics from various thermal and electrical sources and electrical tracking. Additional electrical characteristics and analytical test can also be performed. Property retention following exposure to long-term elevated temperature (air-oven aging), water, ultraviolet light, cold and other outside influences may also be evaluated.

Recycled plastics testing and certification

The UL Component Recognition program for recycled plastics evaluates plastic compounds that use post-consumer or post-industrial content for compliance to UL 746D, the Standard for Polymeric Materials, fabricated parts. Compliance with the recycled plastics program per UL 746D is accomplished through rigorous testing resulting in the same level of acceptability as a virgin compound.

Automotive Materials Testing

We support you along the entire product development and automotive supply chain, from the planning and design phase, to material selection and the final Production Part Approval Process (PPAP), for an optimized time to market.

Certification solutions

Your customers want to know one thing: your products comply with safety requirements, validated through third-party testing. That’s why a UL Recognized Component Mark is so important. It says that a performance material has been tested not just against minimum standards of safety, but against reputable and trusted standards in the industry: UL Standards.

UL Solutions Yellow Card plastics recognition program

You need to put your products to the test to confirm that the required safety standards and performance expectations of your original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) are met. The UL Solutions Yellow Card is a globally recognized program that provides third-party certification about the quality, safety and performance of your plastic products.

UL Solutions Blue Card plastics for additive manufacturing

The 3D printing, or additive manufacturing, industry is growing quickly. Our plastics program for additive manufacturing defines the requirements necessary to recognize plastics intended for 3D printing, helping prove the safety, integrity and usefulness of those materials in end-products.

Industry leading global polymer testing and certification facilities

Our comprehensive testing, certification, assessment and regulatory compliance services are designed to foster innovation, enhance product and process quality, enable safety and, most importantly, help you meet your business goals.

Our broad capabilities empowers us to help you address a wide variety of key business needs that may arise throughout your product development life cycle and deployment phase. Working with one provider allows you to take advantage of our cost- and time-saving service bundles, and our integrated testing and certification plans allow you to achieve your go-to-market plans in a timely manner.

Our technical experts can also help you align your products to the appropriate UL Certification category and applicable standards. This enables manufacturers of UL Certified products to easily source UL Recognized Components that demonstrably meet their compliance needs and project specifications.

Why UL Solutions

UL Solutions is 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 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 expertise in safety science reaching back to 1894 and in-depth experience across numerous industries, UL Solutions is uniquely positioned to provide a comprehensive 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.