FAQ ATEX IN LINGUA INGLESE

Frequently Asked Questions

General information about ATEX on the EC website


General information

What equipment has to comply with ATEX for use in hazardous areas?

The ATEX directive applies to electrical and non-electrical equipment.

  • For a solenoid valve, it is the complete product comprising the coil and the body which must be ATEX-certified.
  • For an electro-pneumatic valve with integrated pilot, it is considered similar to a solenoid valve, so the whole product must be ATEX-certified.
  • For an electro-pneumatic valve with a separate CNOMO solenoid pilot, 2 certifications are necessary: one for the solenoid operator and one for the pneumatic valve.
  • ATEX certification is also necessary for non-electrical equipment such as filters, regulators, lubricators, valves, cylinders, etc, if used in a certified zone.

If my plant/equipment was installed before 1st July 2003 and is fitted with equipment certified according to the previous method, should I replace them?

For working equipment sold and installed before 1st July 2003, a documented assessment of the risks of explosion must demonstrate that these risks have been taken into account. In particular:

  • For dust-filled atmospheres: the existing working premises must be adapted to comply before 1st July 2006.
  • For gaseous atmospheres: installed equipment which does not comply with directive 94/9/EC must have been assessed by the site manager. Depending on the risk analysis, the manager decides whether or not it is necessary to upgrade it to comply with directive 94/9/EC. Equipment which has received a positive assessment can be maintained in service after 30th June 2006.

What does the deadline of 1st July 2006 correspond to?

On that date, all installations must comply with the ATEX directives.

For working equipment sold and installed before 1st July 2003, a documented assessment of the risks of explosion must demonstrate that these risks have been taken into account. In particular:

  • For dust-filled atmospheres: the existing working premises must be adapted to comply before 1st July 2006.
  • For gaseous atmospheres: installed equipment which does not comply with directive 94/9/CE must have been assessed by the site manager. Depending on the risk analysis, the manager decides whether or not it is necessary to upgrade it to comply with directive 94/9/EC. Equipment which has received a positive assessment can be maintained in service after 30th June 2006.

Can I mount accessories on the ATEX-certified products?

Yes. See our catalogue "Apparatus for potentially explosive atmospheres" which includes all the compatible accessories which have been the subject of risk analysis. For all other accessories, risk analysis must be performed on a case-by-case basis.

Can I assemble ATEX-certified products?

Yes. For example, a pneumatic valve and a CNOMO interface solenoid valve, a cylinder and an electro-pneumatic valve... as long as the following rules are respected:

  • Each product involved in the assembly must be ATEX-certified.
  • Take into account the least favourable category and temperature class and make sure that they are compatible with the area of use.
  • Check the continuity of the earth connection to allow dissipation of static electricity. This continuity must be ensured on all equipment requiring assembly, whatever the area of use.

Traceability of ATEX products:

Traceability of ATEX products is mandatory from their manufacture through to their use. ASCO Numatics archives information such as customer identification, product code, serial number, date of manufacture and order number.

Maintenance

I want to replace non-ATEX equipment certified according to the previous method on an existing installation. What should I do?

We advise you to replace the old products with ATEX-certified equipment.

Can I repair ATEX equipment?

You can buy spare parts kits for ATEX products and carry out maintenance subject to some conditions:

  • You must comply with instructions contained in the installation and start-up guide delivered in the spare parts kit.
  • You must ensure traceability of the repaired ATEX product.
  • The technician performing the repair must have received sufficient training concerning the ATEX directive and the risks of explosion.
  • The conformity of the markings must be checked (manufacturer's markings, modification/repair markings).
  • You must change the existing ATEX label:
    • either by replacing it with a new label, called a modification/repair label
    • or by adding a specific identification mark (e.g. addition of the letter "R")

What should I do with equipment in stock not installed before 1st July 2003 and not compliant with the ATEX 94/9/EC directive?

You cannot use these products for installations set up after 1st July 2003.

For installations in service before 1st July 2003, a documented assessment of the risks of explosion must demonstrate that these risks have been taken into account. In particular:

  • For dust-filled atmospheres: the existing working premises must be adapted to comply before 1st July 2006.
  • For gaseous atmospheres: installed equipment which does not comply with directive 94/9/EC must have been assessed by the site manager. Depending on the risk analysis, the manager decides whether or not it is necessary to upgrade it to comply with directive 94/9/EC. Equipment which has received a positive assessment can be maintained in service. In that case, you can use your equipment in stock to replace any defective equipment if it complies with the former CENELEC regulations.

Is it possible to repair an old non-ATEX product for use in an explosive atmosphere?

Yes, if the equipment installed complies with the previous regulations and the installation does not require adaptation to comply with directives ATEX 94/9/EC and 1999/92/EC.