Sockets and switches for outdoor environments, which to use!

Outlet points and switches exposed to rain or places with excessive humidity is indeed a problem. Thinking about it the World of Electrical did this article presenting a simple way to end this problem. Find out all about the sockets and switches that are specific to these conditions, and learn more about the degree of IP protection. So come on guys!

Water and electricity is not a good combination, since it can cause everything from a short circuit with the burning of electrical and electronic devices, to electric shocks that can be fatal.

Many people are unaware that the common sockets and switches located inside the premises are not manufactured to resist water directly on them. These components are not designed to withstand outdoor environments. Therefore, to use plugs and switches in the yard or near the pool, it is only possible with the use of the appropriate component for this type of situation.

If you do not know the sockets and switches for this type of environment require an IP protection degree, and on the market we can find products with various types of protection such as IP44 and IP55.

Degree of protection
For those who do not know the degree of protection, it is identified by the acronym IP, which means the Protection Index for a given product. This is an international standard defined by the IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission) to classify and evaluate the degree of protection of products against the penetration of solid and liquid bodies. The protection index indicates the resistance and suitability of products for use in indoor or outdoor environments, with varying conditions.

There are two parameters to classify the protection index (IP XY), the first digit of which can vary from 0 to 6, referring to protection against solids. The second number can vary from 0 to 8 for protection against liquids. Below is a table with the appropriate classifications.

What is degree of protection and why is it important?
Table with IP degree of protection.

IP protected sockets
Among the different types of switches and sockets available on the market that have a protection index, Schneider has something new! It is a board that can be used for all modules in the Orion line. It has IP55 degree of protection, which resists the penetration of dust, sand, low or medium pressure water jets.

Due to its characteristics, the plate can be used in the garden with irrigation system, yard, laundry, kitchen, bathroom, garage and others. It is made of a very robust material and with excellent sealing, because on the back there is a black foam made of elastomer, which is a waterproof material. On the front there is this transparent PVC plastic, which even protecting does not prevent the use of the switch key.

Socket and switch with IP55 protection.
Switch sealing with elastomer foam and transparent PVC plastic.

Shockproof outlets
This protection plate is also essential to avoid the risks of a short circuit caused by contact with any liquid. Another great benefit is to offer protection against electric shock, making it difficult for children to access the plugs.

Therefore, we can say that it is a double protection, because in addition to the waterproof cover, the socket of the Orion line itself has protection against monopolar insertion, that is, it allows insertion only if the two holes receive pressure at the same time.

Socket and switch with IP55 protection.
Socket with protection against electric shock.

Outlet test
To find out if the modules are really protected against liquids, we did the test using a silk sheet. To do this, we place a silk sheet inside the 4 × 2 boxes and on the switch button.

Protection index against solid and liquid objects.
Silk sheet inside the plate to test the seal.

We installed the plate on the wall, closed the cover and applied water jets in all directions of the protection plate. After wetting the protection plate, we dry it and around it, to ensure that no drops of waterfall on the silk sheet. We removed the silk sheet to check if it got wet or not, so it is possible to certify that the plate meets the specifications referring to the degree of protection IP55.

Socket and switch with IP55 protection.
Testing liquid tightness and drying the outside of the board.

So what did you think of this plate with protection for sockets and switches? This is an excellent product and it solves the problem of plugs and damp areas!

Schneider offers incredible opportunities for professionals in the Electrical Industry, you know how? With the purchase of this waterproof board or any other Schneider electrical material, you can earn points that can be exchanged for other products.

Acquiring this advantage is very simple! You just need to install the MySchneider app, login and register the invoice or tax coupon! To register the invoice you need to click on the “My Rewards” button, where your points will appear, in addition to the places you can earn or redeem points.