UL (Underwriters Laboratories) is a leading company in terms of product safety. It provides the highest standards for products carrying their mark through testing, certification, and inspection. UL aims to ensure both workers’ and customers’ safety. Products that pass the UL certification procedure can be recognized by the affixed UL mark. It is particularly intended for products sold in the US and Canada.
The role of the UL mark
UL doesn’t only certify products but also facilities, processes, and systems. Altogether, it issued over 100 different standards.
The UL mark has a few different forms:
- UL Listed is for manufacturers whose products fulfill UL’s standards; it provides the authorization that allows the manufacturers to test the products and apply the UL mark themselves.
- UL Recognized is for goods that are used to manufacture another product; it indicates that the product can be safely used in further production. This mark is rarely seen on the finished product.
- UL Classified can be placed on a product by a manufacturer whose produced goods comply with UL’s standards and who cooperates with UL to ensure the quality and accuracy of their products.
For what products is the UL mark?
The UL mark can mostly be seen affixed on:
- alarm devices
- audio-visual devices
- medical devices.
Why should you use the UL mark?
Founded by the end of the 19th century, UL has been providing product safety for over a hundred years. It is one of the oldest such companies. During that time, they gained the market’s trust. UL mark ensures that a manufacturer and his services are of the highest quality and competent. Besides, using UL marks on products lets the buyer know that certain products comply with local law regulations and are safe for employees and customers.
The UL mark is recognized in many countries around the globe, and the company itself has branches all over the world.
The UL mark variants
The UL mark is mainly used for the United States and Canada markets. For those two markets, it has three variants:
- if there is no “C” or “US,” the product complies with US regulations
- if there is a “C” letter on the left side of the mark, it means that the product fulfills the Canadian requirements that may differ from the US ones
- if the mark has a “C” letter on the left side and “US” on the right side, then it complies with both US and Canadian law regulations.
Due to the fact that the UL mark has global recognition and can be used for many purposes, it actually has quite a lot of variant forms – there are separate ones for the European Union, Australia, Mexico, Brazil, and many other countries. There are also versions of the mark that provide information, for example, that certain product is sustainable or can be used for marine purposes.
Various variations of the UL mark can be found on the website: marks.ul.com/about/ul-listing-and-classification-marks/appearance-and-significance.
How can you get UL certification?
The procedure of getting the UL certification starts when the product is in the development stage.
- The first step is to fill out the form quote.ul.com/#top, where the applicant should provide the information about their product and company.
- Preliminary evaluation takes place, during which the requirements that the product will have to fulfill are determined, along with the tests that the product will have to undergo. Based on that, the costs of the procedure will be assessed.
- If the applicant accepts the price, a sample is sent to the appropriate testing facility.
- After completing the tests, UL employees will inform the applicant whether or not the product fulfills relevant requirements.
- If the product complies with the UL norms, the report is prepared, and the product gains the UL certification along with the right to place the correct mark on its body.
UL mark – a summary
- The UL mark is mainly intended for products entering US or Canadian markets.
- The UL mark can mostly be affixed on electronics, alarm devices, audio-visual devices, or medical products.
- UL certification means the product complies with US or Canadian (or both) market requirements.
- Products with the UL mark have more prestige. The UL mark indicates that it is of the highest quality and can be safely used or used as a component of a different product.