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When you head to any store that sells electronics, you’ll see that many or all of them carry the familiar Federal Communications Commission (FCC) logo. However, it may not be immediately obvious why they carry it, particularly when a device might be as innocuous as a motor or phone. There are good reasons why seemingly all electronics carry the logo; it denotes FCC certification and compliance with the regulations that the FCC enforces.

That doesn’t fully answer the question, though, as it leaves out what FCC regulations do and why they’re so important.

What Does FCC Certified Mean?

FCC certification exists to make sure that an electronic or mechanical device only produces safe levels of radiofrequency radiation. If a product is FCC certified, that means that it’s passed a testing process meant to gauge levels of RF output. This is an extremely important metric for any device to pass, as radiofrequency can pose dangerous electromagnetic interference (EMI).

What are RF Radiation and EMI?

Radiofrequency radiation is the unintentional radio wave output that all electronic devices produce to varying extents. Uncontrolled levels of RF can begin to grow into a risk of EMI, which will disrupt other devices and interfere with their proper functioning. This might manifest as anything from static in communications devices to dangerous irregularities in flight control, life support, and other complex electronic systems.

How Do You Gain FCC Certification?

The process for gaining FCC certification is rigorous but straightforward. When it comes to testing products and devices, the FCC outsources to a variety of accredited, third-party labs around the United States. If you want to secure certification for your own invention, then the first step is finding such a laboratory that suits your needs for testing.

Once you find a suitable lab, you’ll need to arrange for compliance testing. The experts will manage this process largely on their own, using various advanced instruments to identify the RF output of your device and measure it against regulations. If you pass the tests, it means that the radiofrequency radiation remains within safe levels. On the other hand, devices that fail will need to be reworked to reduce their output and comply with regulations.

What Isn’t Covered By FCC Certification?

The FCC certification is a narrow process that only concerns one thing; potential EMI risks. If you see that a product has passed the FCC regulations, that means that the device produces safe levels of radiofrequency radiation. While you should make sure that any electronics you purchase are FCC certified, the logo is not a seal of quality or approval from a consumer advocacy perspective and should not be treated as such.

Expert Compliance Testing Services

If you’re an inventor or a developer at a company, then you need to make sure that whatever you produce falls within FCC regulations. Failing to do so could pose a dangerous risk of EMI, subject you to legal liability, and more. Compliance Testing is one of the top providers of certification and testing services, and we can ensure that you fall within safe RF radiation guidelines. Get in touch today to learn more about how we can help you stay on the right side of FCC regulations.