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UKCA Marking: Electromagnetic Compatibility Regulations Guide

19th September 2023

The Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) Regulations ensure that electrical and electronic equipment a) doesn’t cause electromagnetic disturbance, or b) isn’t disturbed by electromagnetic interference.

Conformity with the regulations is part of UKCA Marking and essential for many types of electrical and electronic equipment that is likely to generate, or be subject to, electromagnetic disturbance.

UKCA marking came into effect on 31st December, 2020, and is the new mandatory mark for certain equipment and products supplied or sold in Great Britain (England, Wales and Scotland).

IES provides assessment and testing for your electrical and electronic equipment, ensuring conformance to the EMC Regulations and allowing you to achieve UKCA Marking compliance.

As a manufacturer, what are your key responsibilities?

This guide explains the purpose of the EMC Regulations, who enforces them and what they cover. We also advise on areas including key responsibilities for manufacturers, how to prepare your equipment for testing, declaration and documentation, and how IES can help to achieve compliance.

What are the EMC Regulations?

The EMC Regulations set out limits for electromagnetic emissions from electrical and electronic equipment.

Two main objectives of the legislation are to:

a) prevent disturbance of telecommunication, radio and other mediums from electrical and electronic equipment.


b) ensure immunity of electrical and electronic equipment to electromagnetic interference.

Who enforces the EMC Regulations?

The EMC Regulations are enforced by National Trading Standards and Ofcom in the UK.

In cases of non-compliant equipment and products, the Health and Safety Executive, Department of Trade and Industry and TUV SUD BABT (formerly known as the British Approvals Board for Telecommunications) can play a part in investigations.

What do the EMC Regulations cover?

The EMC Regulations concern the compatibility of equipment with electromagnetic fields.

They cover electrical and electronic equipment - including apparatus and fixed installations - which are placed onto the UK market or taken into service.

The EMC regulations apply to all electrical and electronic equipment which are prone to generate electromagnetic disturbance, with the exception of:

  • equipment covered by other instruments that govern their conformity with essential requirements
  • aeronautical apparatus, parts and appliances
  • equipment that cannot generate electromagnetic interference which harms radio or telecommunication equipment

Key responsibilities for manufacturers

It is the legal manufacturer of equipment or a product that must demonstrate compliance with the regulations. There are two routes to declaring compliance with the EMC Regulations. Both routes are concluded by the manufacturer making a Declaration of Conformity (DoC).

Manufacturers will decide between the following:

Standards route

For electrical products which are not considered to be of concern in relation to the regulations. This is a logical approach which requires a comparison of the performance of the specific equipment with the harmonised standards. By relying entirely on the relevant harmonised standards for equipment, the Standards Route doesn’t always require testing. The DoC effectively states that if the equipment were to be tested against these standards, it would pass.

Technical Construction File route

This route is for electrical products with no harmonised standards, or if testing takes place away from the manufacturer’s premises. A Technical Construction File including results of assessments will be audited to confirm that the electrical or electronic equipment complies with the EMC Regulations. Other information in the Technical Construction File may include; description, design and drawings of the equipment; proof of compliance with harmonised standards or an explanation of how, and evidence that, the requirements of the regulations have been met; and a DoC.

Assessments and testing

There are several emissions and immunity assessments that test for conformity with the EMC Regulations:

Assessments for EMC Regulations conformity

The five classes of assessments are as follows:

1. Radiated emissions – checking that the equipment doesn’t emit unwanted radio signals

2. Conducted emissions – checking that the equipment doesn’t emit unwanted signals along connections

3. Radiated susceptibility – checking that the equipment can operate normally under an electromagnetic field

4. Conducted susceptibility – checking the equipment can operate normally when unwanted signals are applied to power leads and other connections

5. Electrostatic discharge – checking that the product is resistant to a reasonable amount of electrostatic discharge

Preparing your equipment for assessments and testing

We ask customers to make the following preparations ahead of assessments and testing:

  • equipment should be set up in a test facility provided by IES or in the operation position at the customer’s premises
  • tools should be fully facilitised and operational in normal production mode
  • process-related direct current or radio frequency power supplied will need to be energised as requested by the test engineer

Declaration and documentation required for compliance

For electrical and electronic equipment that falls under the EMC Regulations, the following documentation is required by manufacturers:

UKCA marking

For compliance with the EMC Regulations, the UKCA mark should be affixed directly on electrical equipment and products, their packaging, and guarantee certificates. The UKCA mark - which should be displayed clearly - shows that the equipment meets the requirements of the regulations and can be sold on, or supplied to, the UK market.

Technical documentation

Manufacturers taking the Technical File Construction route to compliance will need to provide a Technical File. This collection of documents includes:

  • description of the equipment
  • design and drawings of the equipment, including how it was manufactured and how it is operated
  • proof of compliance with harmonised standards, including evidence such as test data and explanations of how requirements have been met

Declaration of Conformity (DoC)

Both routes to compliance (standards route and Technical File Construction route) require a DoC to be made. The DoC takes the form of a written declaration, which can be made by the manufacturer or an appointed authorised representative. It declares that the equipment is compliant with the EMC Regulations.

The DoC includes; the identification of the manufacturer or appointed authorised representative, details of the equipment, which harmonised standards have been applied, and the year the equipment was UKCA marked.

What are the penalties for non-compliance?

Manufacturers and other responsible parties not complying with the EMC Regulations are committing an offence and risk a fine, imprisonment (a prison term of up to 3 months), or both.

Non-complying equipment and products may be recalled from the UK market immediately.

How can IES help to achieve compliance?

IES offers a range of Compliance Testing services to high-technology manufacturers and OEMs.

We smooth the route to compliance with the EMC Regulations and UKCA Marking, with on- or off-site assessments for your new, modified and second-hand equipment.

Our testing solutions and reporting are used by manufacturers to support a self declaration for electrical and electronic equipment. A self declaration can negate the additional expense of appointing a UK Approved Body (an organisation that provides UKCA certification services).

Achieve UKCA marking compliance with IES

IES gives you total confidence in your route to compliance with the EMC Regulations.

Compliance Testing from IES includes:

  • Product safety testing carried out by experienced engineers
  • Assessments at your site or IES’s testing facility
  • Full reporting including test data and advice on remedial actions
  • The completion of technical documentation
  • UKCA Marking support, including Technical File compilation 

Discuss your Compliance Testing requirements with IES today - send us a message. 

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