The quality marks all architects should know

Print 03 Jul 2020

When it comes to fire safety, it is important to have strict requirements for products, production and installation. Quality marks give you the reassurance that the products actually meet existing requirements.

Type approval, or a certificate of compliance, is awarded to products that comply with a minimum set of technical regulations and safety requirements. Type approval is generally required before a product may be sold in a particular country. This means that the requirements for a given product will vary from country to country.

P mark
The P mark is the strictest certification scheme in the Nordic region. It is the best insurance that the products comply with the P mark rules, SPCR 005, building regulations, mandatory provisions and general guidance on the use of European construction standards (Eurocodes).

The P mark is a voluntary certification scheme administered by RISE Research Institute of Sweden, and involves requirements for production, products and installation.

If a product bears the P mark, it means that:

  • the product meets fundamental technical requirements
  • the product complies with the declared classes for fire, burglary and sound insulation
  • the manufacturer performs self-inspection of production
  • the manufacturer is responsible for P-marked installation and self-inspection on the construction site
  • self-inspection of production and installation is supervised by RISE
  • RISE takes annual random samples of products

P mark
The P mark is the strictest certification scheme in the Nordic region. It is the best insurance that the products comply with the P mark rules, SPCR 005, building regulations, mandatory provisions and general guidance on the use of European construction standards (Eurocodes).

The P mark is a voluntary certification scheme administered by RISE Research Institute of Sweden, and involves requirements for production, products and installation. 

If a product bears the P mark, it means that:

  • the product meets fundamental technical requirements
  • the product complies with the declared classes for fire, burglary and sound insulation
  • the manufacturer performs self-inspection of production
  • the manufacturer is responsible for P-marked installation and self-inspection on the construction site
  • self-inspection of production and installation is supervised by RISE
  • RISE takes annual random samples of products

CE marking
CE marking (CE is short for Communauté Européenne, European Community) is visible proof that a product is deemed to meet the requirements laid down in one or more of the New Approach Directives. Type approval is part of the conditions for CE marking and sale of products in respect of EEA/EU regulations.

At the same time, it is a declaration that the manufacturer guarantees that all requirements made of the product in the relevant Directive or Regulation are deemed to have been met. The manufacturer is responsible for ensuring that the product meets these requirements.

In addition, CE marking sends a signal to public agencies that the product meets the safety requirements applicable in the EEA/EU, and that this can be documented.

CE marking makes no utility quality requirements
CE marking alone is not a quality mark for a product. It just shows that certain minimum health, safety and environment requirements have been met.

CE marking means that:

  • performance of the construction product is declared uniformly in Europe
  • construction products subject to a product standard (hEN) must have a declaration of performance and CE marking

For example, a CE-marked construction product is not necessarily suitable for use in buildings. The developer must itself decide on the appropriateness of a product using the performance described in the CE marking.

Differences between P marking and CE marking
To summarise, a P-marked product is already deemed suitable for use in the building, where the safety assessment is performed by an independent third party. The P mark also shows that it is a quality product for which the manufacturer takes full responsibility, from sale to installation.

CE marking means that the performance of the product has been declared uniformly in Europe, and products subject to a product standard (hEN) may have a declaration of performance and be marked. CE marking is not a quality mark for the product on its own.

P marking supplements CE marking by linking the results to Norwegian law in order to permit declaration of the performance of more properties and quality assurance by means of supervision.

Sapa’s products are certified for P marking. In addition to P marking, Sapa’s authorised manufacturers may add the CE mark to products that are subject to a product standard. 

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