What Does ANSI Z87.1-2010 Certified Safety Glasses Mean?

Woman Wearing ANSI Z87 Safety Glasses

The new ANSI Z87.1-2010 certification helps identify types of eye protection with clear markings

As you stroll through the “aisles” of our safety glasses online store, you’ll see the words “ANSI Z87.1-2010 certified” quite a bit on our safety glasses and safety goggles. For many people, their jobs require them to choose only ANSI Z87.1-2010 certified safety glasses – or “Z87 safety glasses” as they’re commonly called. But what do these letters and numbers really mean to us? We know the certification is important, but how does it help protect our eyes?

Extensive Testing –Safety glasses have a critical job to do. When we find ourselves in a situation that compromises our eye safety, we depend on our glasses to protect our peepers – there’s no room for error or malfunction. ANSI Z87.1-2010 certified safety glasses aren’t just produced and shipped out to us – they first undergo intensive testing that ensures they’ll stand up when your eyes need it most. Tests include the ability for Z87 safety glasses to protect us from non-ionizing radiation, impact to the eyes, and exposure to chemicals, whether it be at work, school or home.

The Standard – Safety is serious business, and it’s important that certifications are regulated and enforced. Yet, we all know that understanding safety certifications can sometimes get confusing, and one of the key ways to encourage employees to heed regulations is to make them simple to understand. ANSI Z87.1-2010 did away with a more complex certification system, and brought with it a singular standard in understanding the eye protection you need. Employers now need to choose Z87 safety glasses that best represent the hazards found in the workplace, such as:

  • Blunt impact
  • Radiation
  • Splashes and droplets
  • Dust
  • Small dust particles

Clear Markings – You need to quickly and easily identify what type of Z87 safety glasses your employees are wearing. ANSI Z87.1-2010 introduced new markings that are more efficient and easier than ever to understand:

  • Splash and droplet: D3-splash and droplet / D4-dust
  • Fine dust: D5-fine dust
  • Welding: W (plus the shade number)
  • UV: U (plus the scale number)
  • Infrared light: R (plus the scale number)
  • Visible light filter: L (plus the scale number)

All of us here at SafetyGlassesUSA.com support more uniform safety regulations – safety should be simple to understand, and we applaud the American National Standards Institute and the International Safety Equipment Association for taking this step. Understanding what ANSI Z87.1-2010 certification really means for our eye protection makes us respect our Z87 safety glasses that much more!

Please Note:
The new safety standard ANSI Z87.1-2010 allows time for manufacturers to phase in the new markings, so it’s still possible to purchase certified safety glasses that do not have the new markings displayed. If you have any questions about a particular safety glass or goggle style you should contact the retailer or manufacturer for clarification.

Ali Saporito About Ali Saporito

Hi there! I'm Ali Saporito, and I'm happy to be posting on the Safety Glasses USA blog. I've always been an avid believer in putting safety first - after all, it truly isn't fun if someone gets hurt. I'll be posting on a variety of safety topics, and I welcome you to share your own viewpoints by posting comments on each post.

"Prepare and prevent, don't repair and repent." ~Author Unknown