Technical Bulletin: Splash Zone Safe

 Lighting the Way to the Splash Zone: Understanding ANSI/NSF 2 Standard

As industry professionals—lighting designers, architects, or others involved in the commercial and industrial lighting industry—we are continually faced with a myriad of standards and regulations. Among these, the National Sanitation Foundation’s (NSF) “splash zone” standardization is one way to evaluate implications on lighting design and application in food-related environments. DMF Lighting, in its commitment to quality and safety, has met ANSI/NSF 2 standard suitable for splash zone use with modules, trims, and cylinder extrusions in the matte white or matte black finish across all product series.

The Importance of Splash Zone Standards

Why should the lighting industry concern itself with a standard seemingly geared towards food equipment? The answer is simple—our products are pervasive, illuminating environments from offices to industrial plants and, importantly, food processing areas. In these settings, luminaire lenses and trims are potentially exposed to the same environment as food processing equipment, making ANSI/NSF 2 standards relevant to our industry. ANSI/NSF 2 splash zone standards underscore a luminaire’s capability to withstand and function optimally under specific conditions. Earning this certification also highlights a product’s adherence to stringent quality and safety criteria, providing reassurance to clients that the lighting equipment can sustain sanitary conditions vital in areas like commercial kitchens, food processing plants, and other similar environments. 

Measuring up to the Standard 

The process of obtaining ANSI/NSF 2 listing for splash zone use is comprehensive and rigorous. It involves several stages including product testing, material analyses, plant audits, and product-system conformity assessments. The testing phase ensures that the product surfaces can endure high-humidity environments and frequent washing without compromising its performance or the safety of the environment. The materials used are scrutinized for their resistance to corrosion and their ability to prevent microbial growth.


For luminaires, the standards specifically assess only those elements exposed below the ceiling – the lens design, durability, ingress protection ratings, and fixture construction. The fixtures should be designed such that they do not accumulate dust, dirt, or food particles. The lenses should be shatter-resistant to prevent contamination risks in case of breakage. These measures ensure the luminaire is easy to clean, minimizes bacterial growth, and can withstand routine cleaning without functional degradation. 


In summary, while the notion of “splash zones” may seem quite specific to food equipment, its implications significantly influence the lighting industry. Our understanding and adherence to these standards not only foster the development of safer, higher quality products but also elevate the standards of the environments our products illuminate.


At DMF, we are the guiding light, illuminating the path for our clients in a manner that is efficient, sustainable, and safe. The ANSI/NSF 2 Standard, with its specific provisions for splash zones, helps ensure we stay true to this objective, shaping our creations to meet not just the lighting needs, but also the hygiene and safety demands of the spaces we enhance. 

To learn more about typical use cases and examples, click here.