Enclosures And The NEMA Classification

NEMA, otherwise known as the National Electrical Manufacturers Association, is the name of a Manufacturers Organization which is involved in the active promotion of standardized product specifications in regards to electrical apparatus. 

RS Components has a range of NEMA classified enclosures but what do the NEMA Classifications mean?

NEMA 1

enclosures are used for ensuring that terminations and controls are protected from both personnel and other objects. This enclosure type comes with a latching door but does not include a gasket sealing surface and is used in applications where it is unnecessary to seal out the likes of dust, water and oil.

NEMA 2

enclosures are primarily intended to be used indoors for protection against a certain amount of dirt and falling water. 

NEMA 3

enclosures are intended primarily for outdoor use in order to offer protection against rain, external ice formation, windblown dust and sleet. 

NEMA 3R

are enclosures used in outdoor locations for junction boxes and wiring. These enclosures offer protection against the formation of external ice as well as rain, sleet and snow. They also provide an increased level of protection from dripping water. Some NEMA 3R models come with hasps for the purpose of padlocking, but NEMA 3R enclosures do not include gasket sealing surfaces. 

NEMA 3RX

enclosures are generally used for junction boxes and wiring that is situated outdoors. As well as protecting against falling snow, sleet and rain and against dripping water indoors, they also give an extra layer of protection from corrosion.

NEMA 3S

enclosures are primarily intended for outdoor use in order to offer protection from sleet, rain and windblown dust, as well as to ensure the continued operation of outdoor mechanisms during icy conditions. 

NEMA 4

enclosures are used in a number of applications where machine tool cutter coolants are used or occasional wash-downs take place. These enclosures can also be used in applications where pressurized water streams are utilized and come gasketed and with a clamped door to ensure maximum sealing.

NEMA 4X

enclosures are manufactured from aluminium, fibreglass, polycarbonate or stainless steel and are designed to serve in harsh environments which feature frequent usage of caustic cleaners and corrosive materials. Such applications include petrochemical facilities offshore petroleum sites and meat processing facilities which require repeated complete wash-downs with disinfectants. 

NEMA 5

enclosures are primarily for indoor use and provide some protection from dripping liquids, falling dirt and airborne dust. 

NEMA 6

enclosures can be used indoors or outdoors and prevent water entry at limited depths during brief occasional submersions. 

NEMA 6P

enclosures are the same as NEMA 6 enclosures but can prevent water entry at limited depths for a much longer period. 

NEMA 11

enclosures are primarily used indoors to protect from corrosion caused by gases and liquids. 

NEMA 12

enclosures are used indoors to protect against falling dirt, dripping liquids and other drips, often in indoor electronic drive and automation control systems, including material handling and manufacturing applications. Non-pressurized water and oil and airborne contaminants are prevented from entering the enclosure by gasketed doors. 

NEMA 12K

enclosures come with knockouts and are mainly used indoors to protect against falling dirt, dust and dripping liquids. 

NEMA 13

enclosures are mainly used indoors to protect against non-corrosive coolant, dust, and spraying oil and water. 

The performance criteria for enclosures used in particular environments are set by NEMA. 

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