Lighting and Electrical Standards

I've given links to some of the standards, but they are copyright so not meant to be shared, and the links tend to come and go. Unfortunately they are also very expensive, so outside of the budget of most potters. If you are lucky enough to have a public library in your neighbourhood, they can often produce the standards for you to read. And if you do want to buy your own copy, it is worth shopping around, as prices can vary significantly.



The international standard on lamps is IEC 60598. This is implemented in the EU as EN 60598, and in the UK as BS EN 60598.
The standard consists of multiple parts, as given below. Basically 60598-1 includes anything that could apply to any type of lamp, and then in part 2 the various subsections say which parts of 60598-1 apply to that type of lamp, plus sometimes adding in some more specific requirements. So the intention is that you start with the relevant section of part 2, and use that to guide you to the relevant sections in part 1.

60598-1Luminaires - General requirements and testsOverall requirements
60598-2-1Luminaires - Particular requirements - Fixed general purpose luminairesFor wall and ceiling mounted lamps
60598-2-2Luminaires - Particular requirements - Recessed luminairesFor lamps recessed into walls, floors and ceilings
60598-2-3Luminaires - Particular requirements - Luminaires for road and street lighting
60598-2-4Luminaires - Particular requirements - Portable general purpose luminairesFor table and floor lamps
60598-2-5Luminaires - Particular requirements - Floodlights
60598-2-6Not used at present
60598-2-7Not used at present
60598-2-8HandlampsTorches etc.
60598-2-9Photo and film luminaires (non-professional)
60598-2-10Portable luminaires for children
60598-2-11Aquarium luminaires
60598-2-12Mains socket-outlet mounted nightlights
60598-2-13Ground recessed luminaires
60598-2-14Luminaires for cold cathode tubular discharge lamps (neon tubes) and similar
60598-2-15Not used at present
60598-2-16Not used at present
60598-2-17Luminaires for stage lighting, television and film studios (outdoor and indoor)
60598-2-18Luminaires for swimming-pools and similar applications
60598-2-19Air-handling luminaires (safety requirements)e.g. lamps with built-in fans
60598-2-20Lighting chains
60598-2-21Sealed lighting chains
60598-2-22Luminaires for emergency lighting
60598-2-23Extra low voltage lighting systems for filament lampsClass III lighting - but just for incandescent and halogen type bulbs
60598-2-24Luminaires with limited surface temperatures
60598-2-25Luminaires for use in clinical areas of hospitals and health care buildings

IEC presentation on testing to IEC 60598-1: https://www.slideserve.com/tahir/principle-testing-of-iec-60598-1-iec-60598-2-1


The US adopts very few international standards, generally preferring to make their own national standards. Most electrical standards are produced by UL.
The standard for table and floor lamps is UL153 - Portable Electric Luminaires.
You can view it here (and download, though you have to upload a document first to unlock downloads) https://studylib.net/doc/8563908/ul-153-0-7629-0518-2-portable-electric-luminaires-underwr...# or here https://u.dianyuan.com/bbs/u/28/1113633956.pdf (though this version has a few missing pages).
There's also an article on wooden lamps in American Woodworker, December 1990 (p. 40ff), which you can read in Google Books here: https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=jPsDAAAAMBAJ&pg=PA40&lpg=PA40&hl=en&sa=X&q&f=false#v=onepage&q&f=false

Electrical Standards


BS767:2018 Requirements for Electrical Installations covers the basis for electrical wiring in buildings, whether domestic houses or work places. It may become relevant if you get involved in designing larger lighting systems for a building, rather than just individual lamps.