IECEE Ruling: Calibrations Performed Internally Must be Accredited

Many manufacturers, businesses, and certifying and testing organizations choose to meet IECEE requirements to enhance consumer confidence in their products and services and to facilitate international trade in a global marketplace.

In June of 2023, the IECEE determined that internal calibrations must be accredited or performed by an accredited service provider. Statements and claims of metrological traceability (e.g., NIST traceable) alone are no longer sufficient and any organization performing internal calibrations must be accredited for those calibrations to meet IECEE requirements. The primary reason for this decision was due to many organizations not:

  • using validated methods,
  • evaluating measurement uncertainty, or
  • considering the impact of measurement uncertainty on conformance (pass/fail) decisions.

Existing IECEE recognized labs must become accredited by the end of 2026, and new applicants are required to be accredited beginning in 2024.

Who is IECEE and How was Accredited Internal Calibrations Decided?

IECEE, the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) System of Conformity Assessment Schemes for Electrical Equipment and Components, is a global certification system that ensures electrical and electronic equipment and testing services meet certain standards and requirements for safety and reliability.

The IECEE Schemes address the safety, quality, efficiency and overall performance of components, devices and equipment for homes, offices, workshops, health facilities among others. In all, IECEE covers 23 categories of electrical and electronic equipment and testing services.

The Certification Management Committee (CMC) is responsible for the operation of the IECEE. It is a Committee of the IEC which functions under the authority of the Conformity Assessment Board (CAB).

The CMC, through the work of its different Member bodies, decides on and/or endorses issues pertaining to membership, finances, appointments, rules, and procedures for the operation of the schemes, IECEE management and promotion. It provides a report on its activities, at least annually, to the CAB and submits proposals for CAB approval regarding the above-mentioned points.

Additional discussions will be held at the Committee of Testing Laboratories (CTL) level to revise OD-5011 (Rev 1.3; 6/30/2021) “Requirements for Traceability of Calibrations and Calibration Intervals” and probably add exceptions for equipment that could be submit to verification instead of calibration (with wording/definition to be provided for verification vs calibration).

According to the Certification Management Committee in a meeting held in June 2023, it has been decided that internal calibrations (calibrations performed by the testing laboratory itself) will have to be accredited or the calibrations performed by accredited organizations (outsourced) for all labs:

  • Certification Body Testing Laboratories (CBTL)
  • Specialized Testing Laboratories (SPTL)
  • Subcontractors, and
  • Customer Testing Facilities (CTF; all levels)

The effective implementation dates are as follows:

  • New applicants: 2024-01-01
  • Existing IECEE recognized labs: 2026-12-31

Preparing for Accreditation

Many IECEE recognized organizations are seeking accreditation for internal calibrations to meet IECEE requirements. Organizations can begin to prepare for conformity assessment with workplace training on topics like measurement and quality systems, measurement uncertainty, international standards, method development, conformity assessment, technical tools, soft skills, and more. Training gives staff the knowledge and skills they need to not only meet ISO requirements, but to continuously improve quality and position your organization as an industry leader.

With A2LA WorkPlace Training’s wide selection of self-paced, virtual e-Learning courses, students can begin at the appropriate skill level and take courses from anywhere and at any time in the world. Self-paced courses are based on current, accepted industry knowledge and applications and include real-world examples to educate, demonstrate, and reinforce best practices. Try A2LA WorkPlace Training’s eLearning courses by exploring our free demos.

If your laboratory needs assistance with implementing MSA/SPC, building measurement uncertainty budgets, performing method validation, or improving quality assurance or control processes, A2LA WorkPlace Training has a broad range of public or private (contract) instructor-led training courses to bolster your knowledge and skills to successfully achieve and maintain accreditation.

Organizations can also seek consulting services from recognized industry expert consultants who offer firsthand experience and a best practice perspective. AWPT’s consultants are equipped to review your current internal calibration processes to determine if insourcing or outsourcing your calibrations is cost and time efficient. A consultant will evaluate your organization’s specific processes to identify any potential nonconformities, as well as pinpoint areas for improvement.

A2LA WorkPlace Training is committed to your long-term success by encouraging a culture of quality, competency, and employee engagement within your organization.

To learn more about this ruling, join AWPT Vice President Tim Osborne and Director of eLearning Paul Hanssen for their upcoming webinar, “Exploring the IECEE Internal Calibrations Ruling.” They will explore the ruling and what it means for manufacturers, businesses, and certifying and testing organizations going forward. Click here to register: 

To learn more about self-paced eLearning, instructor-led training, and consultation services, contact us.