The standard EN 60529/IEC 60529 (VDE 0470 Part 1) "Degrees of protection provided by enclosures (IP Code)" defines protection ratings for electrical equipment cladding (housings). This concerns the protection of people from direct contact (via back of the hand or fingers) with live components as well as the protection of the equipment against any ingress of solid objects (foreign-object protection) and moisture. In particularly, they serve to ensure the construction-related air and leakage gaps between components conducting different voltages. The electrical safety of the equipment determined during testing must remain effective under operating conditions.
The IP code (IP – International Protection) consists of two digits. The first digit expresses the protection against direct contact and foreign bodies; the second digit expresses the protection against water (see table).
Both the installer during installation as well as the operator during the service life are responsible for the lighting installation’s compliance with the protection rating. To ensure the luminaire's specified protection rating during installation, the sealing equipment for cable entries and fixation points included in the delivery must be used, and the information in the installation instructions must be observed.
The specified protection rating relates to the intended operating position of the luminaire. Unless otherwise specified, ceiling installation is assumed.