What You Need To Know About Enclosure NEMA Classifications

Electronic and electrical components are an essential part of any business. These components are prone to damage by a number of factors like moisture, oil, heat, chemicals, dust, wear and tear, and other harsh environmental conditions like rain, snow, sleet, and ice.

To ensure personnel safety and the proper function of your electrical applications and machinery, it is important to suitably shield the internal components with enclosures. You can find a great range of business applications at RS Components.

There are enclosures meant for clean indoor locations like your air-conditioned office or commercial location as well as others meant for outdoor non-hazardous locations. You would also need enclosures for your indoor or outdoor industrial applications that are exposed to harsh weather, hazardous particles, and corrosive chemicals.

However, when considering your enclosure options, it is important to checks its NEMA ratings. The National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) has classified electrical enclosures as per a standard rating system. Each NEMA rating has different specifications that should be understood to protect your electrical components and also safeguard your employees.

NEMA Classification For Enclosures

Let us understand the NEMA classification better to help you determine which enclosure would be suitable for the environment you would want to install it in.

NEMA Type 1

For your commonly used indoor applications like switches or junction boxes that would only require protection against solid foreign objects such as falling dirt and dust, NEMA type 1 enclosures are the best choice. NEMA type 1 also provides protection to personnel against access to hazardous parts.

NEMA Type 3R

NEMA type 3R enclosures are ideal for both indoor and outdoor applications and are designed to withstand weather elements such as rain, snow, sleet, and windblown particles. For instance, your outdoor meter cabinets and utility boxes are NEMA type 3R enclosures.

NEMA Type 4

NEMA type 4 enclosures are watertight and are not only weatherproof (rain, sleet, snow, and ice) but can also withstand direct hose blasts in case of factory wash down situations. Use this enclosure option in industrial applications such as wiring enclosures, hydraulic controls, and operator consoles.

NEMA Type 6

NEMA type 6 enclosures provide protection from humid air, water washdown conditions, and occasional temporary submersion at a limited depth. This type is an ideal solution for your waterproof electronic and electrical applications.

NEMA Type 12

These dust-tight enclosures are best for indoor use even in conditions where there is water dripping and light splashing. Though watertight, NEMA type 12 enclosures do not provide sufficient protection is an extreme washdown environment with high-pressure hoses.

NEMA Type 13

If you need to install your enclosures in areas where there is going to be a lot of spraying, splashing, and seepage of oil and non-corrosive coolants, NEMA type 13 is the ideal choice. If you own an industrial unit, go for NEMA type 13 enclosures to protect your machinery from oil residues.

As a business owner, if you understand your requirement you can easily find the right enclosure that will ensure the consistency of the application as well as the safety of its end-user.