SEFA now requires Executive Members (companies that are manufacturers) to have at least one product that complies with a SEFA Recommended Practice and is certified by a SEFA Approved Independent Test Lab to be SEFA Compliant.
SEFA Recommended Practice SEFA 8, relating to fixed type casework is the most common of the Recommended Practices, followed by SEFA Recommended Practice SEFA 10 which covers the other types of laboratory furniture. Most of the SEFA Recommended Practices require chemical resistance tests. In this testing, 49 common laboratory chemicals are used to determine the effects of these chemicals on the product finish.
For example, if your company wants to have your product tested to determine whether it meets SEFA 8 standards there is a testing process to follow.
The first step is to build the test units. This test requires three very specific units, a base cabinet, a wall cabinet, and a table.
The tests are NOT valid unless these exact units are tested
If you want to test your product for SEFA 8 Compliance you must test these exact units exactly as specified in the Recommended Practice SEFA 8M – 2014
Even in North America, it is not uncommon for a manufacturer to fail one or more of the tests the first time. SEFA 8 is a very difficult standard to meet. Many companies such as Kewaunee do their own in-house testing first. When they think they have a unit that will pass, they then send it to an approved lab for testing.
Each of the tests measure different aspects of the product’s performance. It is estimated that well over 50% of the products being produced outside of North America are not SEFA compliant. The market assumes that if they see a SEFA logo on a manufacture’s product that the product is laboratory grade and SEFA compliant. To ensure that this public expectation is met and the SEFA brand is protected, the membership requirements have been revised so that those displaying the SEFA logo are making a laboratory grade product.
Creative Solutions and Chip Albright have been designing and testing SEFA product for over 20 years. Having been involved in the development of most of the recommended practices, I understand the full intent of each test. I understand what is required to pass the tests and I understand how each test stresses the product. I can assist in the following ways:
- I can review your product and give you an opinion as to whether it is likely to pass SEFA testing
- I can provide a written document that goes into detail about each of the tests and offers insight into what is being tested and what is generally required to pass the test
- I can visit your factory and work with your people to make changes to your product to increase the chances of meeting SEFA standards
- I can provide engineering services to design a product that will pass SEFA testing
- I can assist you in setting up in-house testing
- If you test and fail, I can help you determine why the product failed and how to upgrade the product to pass testing
- I can help you understand the Recommended Practices and what is required by each
- I can work with you in selecting a lab and making sure you understand exactly what is being tested
Creative Solutions has worked with many companies on their engineering and manufacturing challenges to help them produce a laboratory grade product that is SEFA compliant. Let me know how I can assist you and I will give you a proposal for our services.
SEFA 8M Sample Test Report