Welcome to our site!

Electro Tech is an online community (with over 170,000 members) who enjoy talking about and building electronic circuits, projects and gadgets. To participate you need to register. Registration is free. Click here to register now.

  • Welcome to our site! Electro Tech is an online community (with over 170,000 members) who enjoy talking about and building electronic circuits, projects and gadgets. To participate you need to register. Registration is free. Click here to register now.

Want UL approval

Status
Not open for further replies.

goofeedad

New Member
I have assembled an electronic device (I'm leaving it at that for now) and in order to sell it to my prospective customer I need UL approval. I've started the leg work but the lingo and on line forms are getting the best of me. Right now I'm trying to submit a request for a quote ( a price for them to do the testing ). Apparently I was suppose to get a code after filling out the form and didn't make note of it, dumb I know. Guess I need to resubmit and go on from there. Has anyone here attempted this?

Any helpful suggestions or advice would be greatly appreciated.
 

kchriste

New Member
Forum Supporter
How many of these devices are you planning on selling? If not many it might be better to buy UL approved wallwarts or power supplies instead of using your own PSU design.
 
Last edited:

goofeedad

New Member
All of the components are "off the shelf", none are handmade. Some of the parts are already UL approved but many are not. From my understanding it still must under go UL inspection, am I wrong?

BTW, what's a wallwart?

Thanks for posting.
 

kchriste

New Member
Forum Supporter
I'm not familiar with all the UL requirements, but if some of the "off the shelf" components are not UL approved I would assume they probably don't have to be since they are already for sale in the USA. So unless you've modified one of the UL approved devices, I would think you are good to go. Someone correct me if I'm wrong here.
A wallwart is a small power supply that plugs directly into the outlet without a power cord. Hence the big warty blob on the wall. ;)
 

goofeedad

New Member
Wallwart...... gotta remember that one!

Well all of the parts are for sell in the USA and I haven't modified anything. Just connected them together. I thought that would be good enough for a store location but they let me know very clearly that a UL approval is mandatory. The paperwork is huge, I'll just keep on working at it, but any help would great.

Again, thanks for the post.
 

Papabravo

Well-Known Member
Well here is the process.

You send them a unit, and they test it for a one-time fee, like $5000-$6000
Then they send you a bill to maintain your UL certification, like $500/quarter, weather or not you continue to sell the item. Our customer ordered two batches of 400 units at $125/unit. They bitched and moaned and complained about the 8-week lead time. So we ordered the next 400 units and ate them waiting for an order that never came. We maintained the UL registration for another 12 months in the hope that the order would come in. It never did.

You need to make sure your customer is on the hook and is willing to pay for what he wants rather than you getting blind-sided with a fixed expense and no offsetting revenue. I suggest differential pricing, ie here is the price with the approval and here is the price without the approval.
 

jrz126

Active Member
Well here is the process.

You send them a unit, and they test it for a one-time fee, like $5000-$6000
Then they send you a bill to maintain your UL certification, like $500/quarter, weather or not you continue to sell the item.

There is also a flat rate fee ($3000 I think) if you need to go back and modify ANYTHING in the file.

We had a connector go obsolete on one of our products, we had to pay 3K to get the PAPERWORK changed from one UL approved connector to another UL approved connector.

You might want to get a quote from ETL too. They do the same tests as UL, but they are quicker and easier to work with IMO. I think they're cheaper in the long run. They would have only charged us $500 for the paperwork change.

Class 2 Powersupplies are your friend. If you can use one of those, you'll be exempt from some tests, and you will have alittle more flexability in what you can modify later on without needing to retest. UL doesnt even look at some of our circuit boards because they are fed from a class 2 supply.
 

lowpull

New Member
UL, for Underwriters Laboratory, is one of several Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratories (NRTL), along with ETL as mentioned here. Unless your customer is hard over for UL, any other NRTL can provide similar service and certification. You can shop around.

If the customer insists, then I would add $10k to the budget, along with the time to complete the testing.

Note that a UL certification is contingent on the use that it is tested for. I.E. an indoor lamp would not maintain its UL certification if used outdoors. So some consideration for how you use or integrate a UL certified device or devices should be evaluated.
 

goofeedad

New Member
Thanks everyone for the posts. Sounds like some very good advice. I'll check into the possibility of using another testing company, I'll also probably add the testing into the price of the device.

Thanks much.

Also, I'll do some checking into other NRTLs, can anyone throw me a name or two that I can start with?
 

goofeedad

New Member
You might want to get a quote from ETL too. They do the same tests as UL, but they are quicker and easier to work with IMO. I think they're cheaper in the long run. They would have only charged us $500 for the paperwork change.

I'll check out ETL thanks a load.

Class 2 Powersupplies are your friend. If you can use one of those, you'll be exempt from some tests, and you will have alittle more flexability in what you can modify later on without needing to retest. UL doesnt even look at some of our circuit boards because they are fed from a class 2 supply.

Don't want to show off my ignorance but a "Class 2 Powersupply" is a prepackaged type that is pluged into the wall, right?
 

Bob Scott

New Member
Oh just do what the Chinese do, make your own UL and CSA stickers.
 

jrz126

Active Member
Don't want to show off my ignorance but a "Class 2 Powersupply" is a prepackaged type that is pluged into the wall, right?

Not necessarily. It is a class 2 supply if it is evaluated to the UL1310 Standard.

UL has this database that you can search to verify if a part is UL listed and the standard it is listed to. UL Online Certifications Directory
 

Rung1

New Member
First off, hello and thanks for taking time to respond. I've been a fan and reader of this site for awhile now and I'm happy to make my first post!

I read this old post and it got me thinking about a low (manufacture) volume product I wanna sell.

So, my question is this: If I use a UL Listed, manufacturer-enclosed class II PSU within the ITE application guidelines for my low-power A/V device (under 1 amp and 24 volt) do I still have to UL list it in order to sell it legally? Does it save me any money at all?

Supposedly class II psus are my friend. Exactly how so? If I have to go through the entire listing process from scratch, what would be the benefit? $10,000 instead of $12,000. Or, $3,000 instead of $12,000?
 
Last edited:
Status
Not open for further replies.

Latest threads

EE World Online Articles

Loading
Top