ANSI Z87.1: Safety Glasses Standards, Eye Protection Standards

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ANSI Z87.1: Safety Glasses Standards, Eye Protection Standards

safety glasses standard

ANSI Z87.1 is a safety standard that covers the use of safety glasses in the workplace. It defines requirements for safety glasses’ type, size, and performance.

This blog will discuss the ANSI Z87.1 standard for Safety Glasses. This standard, initially released in 1968 and revised several times since then, sets general requirements for eye protection products including design, performance criteria, labeling and related requirements for occupational and educational applications. We will look at the importance of complying with the standards and discuss how glasses that meet the standard ensure safety from potential hazards in the workplace. Additionally, we will look at some of the specific requirements set by the standard.

What does ANSI Z87.1 mean?

ANSI Z87.1 is a standard developed by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) to protect industrial workers from hazardous eye and face protection. It sets the requirements for eye and face protection products, such as safety glasses, goggles, face shields, face shields, and welding helmets.

The ANSI Z87.1 standard is a comprehensive set of guidelines that defines the proper use of protective eyewear, establishes testing protocols, and provides specifications for product design and construction. 

The main part of the ANSI Z87 standard is divided into two sections; design requirements and testing requirements. The design requirements include impact resistance, optical clarity, and frame construction. Impact resistance ensures that any product meets a minimum impact strength test.

ANSI Z87 requirements

pyramex fortress safety glasses

The ANSI Z87 rating is based on three main hazards: impact, liquid splash, and dust. All safety eyewear that meets the ANSI Z87 rating should be marked with “Z87.” Let’s take a closer look at the three hazards, their testing methods, and their markings.

Impact
The ANSI Z87 rating requires safety eyewear to pass a high-velocity impact test. This test is designed to evaluate the frame and its lenses’ ability to protect the user’s eyes from objects hitting them with a high velocity. The testing is done in a laboratory setting and the eyewear must pass the test to receive the ANSI Z87 rating.

Liquid Splash
The ANSI Z87 rating also requires safety eyewear to pass a liquid splash test. This test is designed to ensure that the lenses protect the user’s eyes from liquid splash. The testing is done in a laboratory setting and the eyewear must pass the test to receive the ANSI Z87 rating.

Dust
The ANSI Z87 rating also requires safety eyewear to pass a dust test. This test is designed to ensure that the lenses protect the user’s eyes from dust and debris. The testing is done in a laboratory setting and the eyewear must pass the test to receive the ANSI Z87 rating.

ANSI Z87 markings explained

 

ansi z87 safety glasses

The ANSI Z87 marking is usually a small set of letters and numbers printed on the side of the frame or lenses of the safety glasses. It indicates the types of protection the glasses provide and other important safety aspects such as impact resistance and UV protection.

The ANSI Z87 marking consists of two parts: the first part indicates the type of protection offered by the glasses, and the second part indicates the impact protection level. Here’s a breakdown of what each part of the marking means:

  • Z87+ is a high-velocity impact rating
  • Z87 is a basic impact rating
  • D3 indicates droplet and splash protection and splash
  • D4 indicates protection from dust particles
  • D5 means protection from fine dust
  • W plus a number shows the level of welding protection
  • U plus a scale number means the level of UV protection
  • R plus a scale number means the level of infrared light protection
  • L plus a scale number means the visible light filter
  • Z87-2 on the frame and both temples indicates prescription eyewear
  • H means designed for smaller head sizes
  • V indicates photochromic lenses
  • S indicates a special lens tint
  • indicates eyewear can resist fogging

How are Safety Glasses Tested Under ANSI z871?

The testing procedure involves three main tests for safety glasses under ANSI Z87.1-2015. The first test is the Visual Impact Test, which is designed to determine how well the lens can resist impact from a flying object. The second test is the High Mass Impact Test, which tests the lens for resistance to high-velocity impact. Finally, the third test is the UV Test, which checks to ensure the lens provides adequate protection from ultraviolet light.

In the Visual Impact Test, a steel ball weighing between .25 and .50 ounces is dropped from 50 inches onto the lens. The lens must remain intact, with no more than a small scratch on the surface. If the lens passes this test, it is deemed to provide adequate protection.

The High Mass Impact Test is similar to the Visual Impact Test, except that a 1-ounce steel ball is dropped from a height of 100 inches. The lens must remain intact and provide no more than a small scratch on the surface. If the lens passes this test, it is deemed to provide adequate protection.

The UV Test is designed to ensure that the lens can filter out harmful ultraviolet rays. To pass this test, the lens must be examined under a UV lamp and must block at least 99.9% of the UV rays. If the lens passes this test, it is deemed to provide adequate protection.

Different versions of ANSI Z87 updates

The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) Z87.1 is a standard that outlines the safety requirements for eye and face protection. It has existed since 1968 and has been updated several times.

ANSI Z87.1-2003

The initial ANSI Z87.1 was published in 2003 and was the first standard to be released by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). It was the first standard to include requirements for the design, manufacture and performance of eye and face protection. This initial version of the standard focused on the protection of workers from accidental or unexpected hazards, such as flying objects or vapor. It also guides selecting the right eye and face protection for the specific application.

ANSI Z87.1-2010

The 2010 version of the standard was a complete overhaul of the original 2003 version. It expanded on the previous version by adding more detail and clarity to the requirements for the design, manufacture and performance of eye and face protection. It also added requirements for face shields, visors, and welding helmets. This version also included a more comprehensive testing protocol for the evaluation of eye and face protection products.

ANSI/ISEA Z87.1-2015

In 2015, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and the International Safety Equipment Association (ISEA) collaborated to create a joint standard for eye and face protection, the ANSI/ISEA Z87.1-2015. This version of the standard included expanded requirements for the protection of workers from hazards in the workplace. It also added a new impact test protocol to evaluate the performance of eye and face protection products.

ANSI/ISEA Z87.1-2020

ANSI/ISEA Z87.1-2020 is the most recent version of the standard, released in 2020, was released in 2020 and included updated requirements for the design, manufacture and performance of eye and face protection. This version of the standard includes additional information on testing protocols, labeling requirements, and quality assurance. It also includes a new requirement for ballistic protective eyewear and expanded requirements for laser protective eyewear.

ANSI Z87 VS EN 166

Regarding safety glasses, there are two commonly used standards: ANSI Z87 and EN 166. Both of these standards are designed to set a minimum level of protection for the user and ensure that protective eyewear is manufactured according to strict guidelines. But what exactly is the difference between ANSI Z87 and EN 166?

ANSI Z87 (the American National Standards Institute) is an industry-wide standard developed by the American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE). The standard defines requirements for eye and face protection from impact hazards in the workplace, such as flying fragments or particles, dust, molten metal splashes, and light radiation. It also sets forth design criteria for eye protection products such as frames, lenses, coatings, fit factors, etc. The goal of ANSI Z87 is to provide workers with maximum available protection against potential accident hazards. 

On the other hand, EN 166 (European Standardization) is an international standard developed by CEN – European Committee for Standardization. This standard sets out requirements for mechanical properties and optical test methods related to personal eye protection equipment without addressing performance or design features in detail. It also typically applies to non-safety spectacles or goggles intended solely for fashion purposes. 

Unlike ANSI Z87 which requires manufacturers to meet minimum levels of protection before approving their product designs, EN 166 does not specify any specific performance requirements – instead it merely requires that they meet certain basic optical tests. 

Conclusion

The ANSI Z87.1 standard is an important tool in providing eye protection and ensuring the safety of individuals in the workplace. It is important to determine which type of safety glasses are appropriate based on the environment and the potential hazards present. The standard provides guidance on the manufacturing, testing, and labeling of safety glasses to ensure that they meet the necessary safety requirements. Following the ANSI Z87.1 standard is essential to protecting the eyes and preventing injury.

Arlen Wang

Arlen Wang

Arlen wang is the author of Anbu safety, he is the manager and co-founder of the Anbu Safety network. He has been in anbu safety company since 2008, with a working knowledge of personal protective equipment, and several unique skills related to the PPE industry.

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