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UL Label Requirements: What are they, and why are they important?

Have you ever noticed the small UL label on a computer, microwave, dishwasher, or other electrical appliances or tools? That label assures consumers that the product complies with stringent safety guidelines and specifications by UL.

What is UL 969?

UL 969 is a specific standard developed by Underwriters Laboratories (UL) that pertains to the performance and durability of labels used for marking and identification purposes. UL 969, titled “Marking and Labeling Systems”, outlines the requirements for labels intended for use on various products and surfaces.

The UL 969 standard covers various labeling applications, including safety, caution, warning, and instructional labels. The standard specifies criteria for the durability of labels, such as their resistance to environmental factors like exposure to sunlight, heat, moisture, and chemicals. It also includes requirements for label adhesion, legibility, and permanence.

When a label is UL 969 certified, it has been tested and evaluated by UL to ensure that it meets the specified criteria for durability and performance. Additionally, UL 969 certification assures that the label will maintain its legibility and adherence to the marked surface, even under challenging conditions, and helps manufacturers and end-users select labels that will withstand the intended environment.

It’s important to note that UL 969 certification specifically applies to labeling systems and does not address the content or message conveyed by the labels. The standard focuses on the physical characteristics and performance of the labels themselves.

Producing UL-Certified Labels

Choosing a printer to produce UL-certified labels may involve careful consideration to ensure the label and printer meet the required UL standards. Thermal Transfer printing is a widely recommended method for producing UL-certified labels. AstroNova has a range of thermal transfer printers capable of printing highly durable labels, including monochrome options like the QuickLabel QL-30 and QL-60. Furthermore, QuickLabel QL-300, a toner-based printer, is also capable of producing robust labels in full color that can withstand harsh conditions.

Suitable Materials for UL-Certified Label Printing

The next crucial step? Choosing a high-quality and durable material. The material should be suitable for your application, including adhesion and type of exposure (indoor or outdoor). Due to the stringent requirements of the UL 969 standard, paper labels cannot achieve UL 969 certification. The GetLabels thermal transfer portfolio has multiple gloss and matte synthetic labels, including different ribbon options, with the UL 969 certification.

Interested in learning more?

Contact us with any questions about UL 969, and we will be more than happy to guide you in choosing the right combination of thermal transfer ribbon and material suitable for your specific application.


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