An update on CE Marking Electrical Cable

CE Marking Wire and Cable

A picture showing a selection of wire and cable products
Domestic and European Wire and Cable Products

In an earli­er post, I wrote about the require­ments for CE Marking wire and cable and dis­cussed the mark. In 2016, the Construction Products Regulation 305/​2011 (CPR) came into effect, repla­cing the Construction Products Directive 89/​106/​EEC. The CPR included pro­vi­sions cov­er­ing any kind of mater­i­als that could be used in con­struc­tion, and that includes elec­tric­al cables.

A New Standard under the CPR

A new stand­ard was approved, EN 50575, cov­er­ing the char­ac­ter­ist­ics of power, con­trol and com­mu­nic­a­tion cables used in per­man­ent install­a­tions in build­ings. EN 50575 cov­ers the reac­tion of cables to fire. The stand­ard provides require­ments for four char­ac­ter­ist­ics: flame spread, smoke gen­er­a­tion, the form­a­tion of mol­ten droplets and acid con­tent. The res­ult is a new set of mark­ings for cables covered by the stand­ard, includ­ing CE Marking. Also required by the CPR is a Declaration of Performance, not a Declaration of Conformity. The Declaration of Performance provides dif­fer­ent inform­a­tion than that found in a Declaration of Conformity.

Application of EN 50575

EN 50575 only applies to cables or wir­ing products inten­ded for use in con­struc­tion. It should not be applied to wir­ing mater­i­als used for intern­al wir­ing of appli­ances and products. These products are out­side the scope of the CPR and there­fore are also out­side the scope of EN 50575.

Conclusions

  • Cables used for per­man­ent install­a­tion in build­ings must be CE Marked start­ing 1-Jul-2017
  • Wire and cable products used in machines and appli­ances are not affected by EN 50575, and there­fore should not be CE Marked
  • Cables used to inter­con­nect machinery and which are per­man­ently installed into build­ing infra­struc­ture (e.g., Ethernet cables and oth­er inter­con­nect­ing cables run through build­ing struc­tures in per­man­ent wire­ways or in plen­um spaces) require CE Marking as of 1-Jul-17
  • Wire and cable products, like line-​cord assem­blies, for example, require a CE Mark because they are com­plete products and are covered by a spe­cif­ic EN Standard under the Low Voltage Directive.

Here’s a good sum­mary of the new require­ments and an explan­a­tion of the new mark­ings in a video by General Cable. Full dis­clos­ure: we have no rela­tion­ship with General Cable or any oth­er wire and cable manufacturer.

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