Building Products – UL Compliance

A very large manufacturer of building products for residential, commercial, and industrial markets wanted to reduce its UL licensing fees and improve the product identification labeling process. All of their products require an identification label. Because of some commercial and industrial building codes, some labels require a UL logo.

Each time the UL logo is placed on a product, the company pays a licensing fee to Underwriters Laboratories based on the square feet of product produced. To simplify the manual process and keep label inventories to a minimum, the company purchased preprinted labels with the UL logo and classified the products on a not-to- exceed square footage basis. So, for example, a label printed with a not-to-exceed 100 sq. feet would be placed on all products from 10 square feet to 100 square feet. The company would then pay UL the licensing fee as if all of the products labeled were 100 square feet. The customer wanted to reduce their licensing fees by paying only for actual square footage of product marked.

FOX IV provided a complete turnkey system for each of seven plants. Each system consists of a FOX IV local area network that can handle up to 20 operator stations. Each operator station is located next to the production line and consists of a rugged industrial terminal and a label printer applicator. The industrial terminal is used for selecting the product identification label. A sample label is printed and inspected by the operator. If approved, the system automatically prints and applies the identification label.

FOX IV’s UL Software Control Package automatically keeps track of the number of regular and UL labels printed. It calculates the exact square footage of products marked thereby guaranteeing only the actual UL usage fees are paid. This resulted in significant savings in licensing fees.

In addition, the system eliminated the preprinted label inventory – they went from over 25 labels in inventory to one. The FOX IV system allowed for easy label design editing, eliminated constant label roll changes, and reduced errors by allowing operator inspection and verification of the correct label format at the production line. FOX IV’s UL Software Control Package is secure and is approved by UL for record keeping and licensing fee purposes.

In addition to a FOX IV trained maintenance staff at each location, FOX IV keeps a “hot backup” label printer applicator at its facility, ready to be shipped out at a moment’s notice.

The original system is several years old. The customer has since purchased replacement FOX IV systems for all of their plants. The newer system is based on an Ethernet based interface, touch screen and FOX IV printer applicator.