IP stand for Ingress Protection. It is a rating that describes the protection a fitting has from intrusion of Solid and Liquid material.
The letters IP are always followed by 2 numbers, the first refers to intrusion by solids (1-6) and the second refers to intrusion by liquids (1-8).
For Example a Rating of IP44 would be used on an exterior fitting that may get rained on. Where as an IP68 rating would allow the fitting to be submerged into water, eg a pond light.
The chart below gives a detailed overview of hat each of the numbers represent.
|Solids (1st number)||Liquids (2nd number)|
|0||No Protection||0||No Protection|
|1||Protected against objects > 50mm (hands)||1||Protection against dripping water or condensation|
|2||Protected against objects > 12mm (fingers)||2||Protection against water spray 15 degree from vertical|
|3||Protected against objects > 2.5mm (tools/wires)||3||Protection against water spray 60 degrees from vertical|
|4||Protected against objects > 1mm (small tools)||4||Protection against water spray from all directions|
|5||Protected against dust, limited ingress||5||Protection against low pressure jets of water|
|6||Totally protected against dust||6||Protected against high pressure water jets and heavy seas|
|7||N/A||7||Protection against the effects of immersion (6 inches to 3.3 feet)|
|8||N/A||8||Protected against immersion|