Understanding ANSI Z87 & Z87+ ratings

ANSI Z87.1 rated safety glasses, often simply referred to as ANSI Z87 rated glasses, are a type of eyewear designed to provide protection for the eyes in various hazardous environments. ANSI Z87.1 is a set of standards established by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) to ensure that safety eyewear offers a certain level of protection and performance. These standards are intended to safeguard the eyes against a range of workplace hazards, including impacts, chemical splashes, and optical radiation.

Here are some key aspects of ANSI Z87.1 rated safety glasses:

  1. Impact Resistance: ANSI Z87.1-rated safety glasses are tested and certified for their ability to withstand high-velocity impacts from objects or particles. The glasses should not shatter upon impact, reducing the risk of eye injuries from flying debris or objects.

  2. Coverage and Design: These glasses often have a design that provides good coverage for the eyes and the surrounding areas. They may wrap around the sides of the face to protect from lateral impacts.

  3. Lens Materials: ANSI Z87.1 standards specify the types of materials that can be used for the lenses, including polycarbonate, Trivex, and other impact-resistant materials. The choice of lens material depends on the specific application and the level of protection required.

  4. Marking and Certification: ANSI Z87.1-rated glasses are marked with a Z87.1 label to indicate that they meet the ANSI standards. This label may also include additional markings to specify the type of protection they offer, such as impact resistance, splash protection, or resistance to optical radiation.

ANSI Z87+ rated safety glasses offer the same basic protections as ANSI Z87.1-rated glasses but also must offer side protection.

ANSI Z87+ rated safety glasses may provide better protection against high-velocity impacts, extreme temperatures, or chemical splashes. They might also offer improved optical clarity, reducing the potential for distortion or glare.

When choosing protective eyewear, it's important to consider the specific hazards of the workplace and select glasses that meet the appropriate standards for the intended use. The ANSI Z87+ marking is a helpful indicator that the eyewear offers a higher level of protection, but it's still crucial to check the manufacturer's documentation for details on the exact performance characteristics and suitability for your needs.