Pool Lifts and PV Connectors

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Question

I see in the 2017 NEC Section 680.81 requires electrically powered pool lifts to be Listed.  Does UL Certify (List) these types of pool lifts?

Answer

Yes. UL Certifies (Lists) electrically powered pool lifts under the product category Electrically Powered Lifts for Swimming Pools and Spas (WBEJ). This category covers electrically powered swimming pool and spa chair lifts, and single wheelchair platform-type lifts for persons requiring assistance to safely enter and exit pools or spas. These products are intended to be installed in accordance with Article 680, Part VII, of ANSI/NFPA 70, National Electrical Code (NEC). The lifts may be powered from a swimming pool transformer or dc power unit or be battery operated.  The detachable battery packs may be charged remotely or by solar photovoltaic (PV) panel that is part of the lift.

Certified (Listed) lifts have been investigated for fire, electrical shock and mechanical hazards arising from operation. Stability and mechanical strength are included in the UL investigation. All lifts are investigated for outdoor exposure to water, including resistance to splashing. The basic Standards used to investigate these products are ANSI/UL 60335-1, Safety of Household and Similar Appliances, Part 1: General Requirements, and ANSI/UL 60335-2-1000, Household and Similar Electrical Appliances: Particular Requirements for Electrically Powered Pool Lifts.

The installation instructions provide all information necessary for electrical installation, including provisions for bonding and when GFCI protection is necessary. The instructions also describe the intended supporting surface (deck), necessary clearances from fixed members of the pool and its surround, means for securing the lift, and the lift’s appropriate use and operation. When applicable, instructions for battery charging are included.

The UL guide information and Certifications (Listings) can be located on UL Product Spec at www.ul.com/productspec; enter WBEJ at the category code search.

Question

Are PV wire connectors Certified (Listed) for field installation? In the past, I have only seen the backwards UR on these connectors.

Answer

Until recently, photovoltaic (PV) wire connectors were only eligible for UL Component Recognition and marked with the backwards UR symbol. As a UL Recognized Component, they were limited to factory installation in Certified (Listed) equipment such as PV panels in which UL investigated the connectors as part of an overall equipment Certification (Listing).

UL now offers Certification (Listing) service for PV connectors that can be field installed under the product categories Connectors for Use in Photovoltaic Systems (QIJQ) (for single-pole connectors) and Multi-pole Connectors for Use in Photovoltaic Systems (QIFA).

These product categories cover single-pole and multi-pole latching and locking photovoltaic (PV) connectors rated 1500 V ac or dc or less. These connectors are intended for use in wiring methods detailed in Article 690, Part IV, of ANSI/NFPA 70, National Electrical Code. The preferred ratings are 600,1000 and 1500 V ac or dc.

The connectors may consist of in-line connectors, panel-mounted connectors, distribution blocks, and splitter connectors for interconnection of PV modules and panels, combiner boxes, inverters, converters and similar devices in a PV system. They have been investigated for assembly and termination to cable in the field, based on the instructions provided with the connectors.

These connectors are suitable for the termination of single or multiple, insulated, stranded copper Type TC-ER, USE-2 or PV wire rated 90°C, 105°C, 125°C or 150°C dry, 90°C wet, 600, 1000 or 2000 V.

Unless specifically stated, PV connectors have only been investigated to mate with the same line of connectors/devices within their product family and have not been investigated to mate with similar devices from other manufacturers.

In addition to the UL Certification or Listing Mark identifying use in PV systems, PV connectors are marked with the manufacturer’s name or trademark (or both), voltage and current rating (may be provided on the smallest unit container) and the statement “Do Not Disconnect Under Load.”

Installation instructions or an information sheet supplied with the PV connector describes the required installation information such as the wire-insulation diameter, number of conductor strands, wire size or range, limitations on the type of wire, required tooling or tightening torque, number of crimping operations, conductor-strip length, and any preliminary preparation of conductor ends.

The UL guide information and Certifications (Listings) can be located on UL Product Spec at www.ul.com/productspec; enter QIJQ or QIFA at the category code search.