Electrical Certifications: What You Need to KnowUpdated 4 months ago
At Docking Drawer, we're proud to be the market leader of in-drawer electrical outlets. Offering a full array of solutions, we are committed to charging and powering today's connected lifestyle with innovative solutions. Best of all, every outlet is electrically certified by a Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory (NRTL). But we get a lot of questions about what that means. So we're going to explain in plain English the difference between being ETL-listed, UL-listed and Recognized.
3 Types of Listings: ETL-listed, UL-listed and Recognized
In short, “ETL Listed and UL Listed” tends to be for complete devices which are ready to be purchased and installed wherever they need to be, and are more difficult and expensive to obtain than “UL Recognized.” “UL Recognized” is more for specific subcomponents used to create a product or device, is easier and less expensive to obtain than ‘Listed,’ and using these parts makes it easier for your end product to attain UL Listing.
Electrical Certifications in Plain English
OSHA - Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratories
A Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory (NRTL) is a private-sector organization that OSHA has recognized as meeting the legal requirements in 29 CFR 1910.7 to perform testing and certification of products using consensus-based test standards.
For example, Interteck (ETL), TUV, and UL are all Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratories (NRTLs) which are independent laboratories recognized by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). All are internationally accredited labs capable of testing to a variety of standards, including UL962a and CSA C22.2 (Canada).
All Docking Drawer outlets for use in United States are ETL Listed to UL 962.a.Certain Blade Series and Style Drawer Blade outlets are ETL Listed to CSA 22.2. Learn more about our Canadian offering HERE.
All Docking Drawer outlets are tested by Intertek, which is an independent Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory (NRTL) recognized by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). These labs test products to the specifications of product safety codes. In other words, products are tested for their intended use. If they can't pass these tests safely then they are not in compliance.
But at Docking Drawer we're in compliance with accepted national standards (UL 962a and CSA C22.2 No. 21). And for our friends in Canada, the new 15 & 20 amp Blade Series, Style Drawer Blade and Style Drawer Blade Duo outlets are built to accommodate an Interlock Box. This addition satisfies the requirements listed in section 26-710 of the Canadian Electrical Code (CEC) that stipulate that an outlet be de-energized when a drawer is closed.
ETL vs TUV vs UL Electrical Listings: What are the Differences?
As far as regulatory approval goes, there isn't a difference between ETL, TUV, and UL listings. Inspectors treat them equally as they are all approved by the US Government as NRTLs.
That being said, UL has an additional classification of mark called UL Recognized. It's intended for components installed inside of finished and listed devices. UL intends for recognized components to be specified and installed by technical people in a factory environment. They are not intended to be used and installed in the field.
Note - If a Recognized Component is installed in the field, the only way for UL to verify compliance with a component's conditions of acceptability is to conduct a UL Field Evaluation on the end product where the component is installed. The specifier and installer assume the responsibility. Know your risks.
At Docking Drawer, we believe in being transparent with our customers. That's why we make our certifications available for anyone to read. Find our ETL certification here.