• List of Products Covered by FCC Part 15: An Overview

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    FCC Part 15 Product List

    FCC Part 15 regulates most electronic products sold in the United States. In this guide, we list electronic products classified as either intentional or unintentional radiators by FCC Part 15. We also list products exempt from the regualtion.

    Wi-Fi Enabled Devices

    All Wi-Fi enabled devices such as smartphones, computers, and tablets, carry an intentional radiator to generates and emits radio frequency energy by radiation or induction. Therefore, Wi-Fi enabled devices must comply with FCC Part 15 before imported and sold in the US market.

    Further, FCC Part 15 sets limit on the amount of electromagnetic interference from the Wi-Fi enabled devices. As such, FCC Part 15 served as a common testing standard for electronic equipment including Wi-Fi enabled devices.

    Examples

    • Cellular phones
    • Wireless lighting
    • Wireless microphones
    • Video game consoles
    • Tablets

    Bluetooth Enabled Devices

    Bluetooth enabled devices usually contain an intentional radiator to emit radiofrequency energy range of 9kHz to 3000 GHz, which are also covered under the FCC Part 15.

    With that said, Bluetooth enabled devices such as Bluetooth speaker, Bluetooth earphones, and similar devices must comply with the FCC Part 15 for technical specifications, administrative requirements, and other applicable requirements that depend on the product.

    Examples

    • Bluetooth speakers
    • Bluetooth earphones
    • Bluetooth keyboard/mouse
    • Bluetooth watches
    • Computer laptops
    • Tablets

    RFID Products

    Radio-frequency identification (RFID) is widely used to identify and track a tag or label for many products. In general, RFID products consist of radio transponders, radio receivers, and radio transmitters. Hence, they are regulated under the FCC Part 15.

    Notice that ultra-high frequency (UHF) RFID tags and passive high-frequency RFID tags do not emit energy, and they are exempted from the FCC Part 15. Therefore, you shall determine if your RFID products emit energy and then comply with applicable requirements.

    Examples

    • RFID card holder
    • RFID scanners
    • RFID chips for credit card
    • RFID microchips in livestock/pets

    Wireless Chargers

    Wireless chargers work on the principle of electromagnetic induction, to transfer energy from the charger to a receiver. Therefore, wireless chargers must comply with FCC regulations for RF exposure or other energy emitted when in use.

    In addition, FCC publishes KDB 680106 for many different types of wireless chargers including QI wireless chargers. KDB 680106 provides specific requirements of radiated power, frequency of operation, configurations, and other relevant requirements.

    Examples

    • Radio wireless chargers
    • Inductive chargers
    • Resonance chargers

    USB Devices

    Most USB enable devices are designed to use electrical signals to operate at a certain radio frequency within the product. As such, USB enabled devices such as printer and power banks, are regulated by the FCC as well.

    USB devices create radiofrequency energy within themself, and they can interfere with other devices when placed nearby. Therefore, the chips contained within the USB devices must be compliant to FCC Part 15.

    Examples

    • USB flash drives
    • Printers with USB port
    • Wireless routers with USB port
    • Power banks with USB port
    • USB fans

    Digital Watches and Clocks

    FCC Part 15 also regulates digital watches sold in the US market. Most digital watches contain an unintentional radiator and operate at over 9kHz, which can potentially cause significant interference on the telecommunication network and frequency spectrum.

    The same applies to digital clocks, which contain an unintentional radiator and fall into the scope of the FCC Part 15. As such, your digital watches and clocks shall be tested to verify compliance before entering the US market.

    Examples

    • Smartwatches
    • Digital watches
    • Digital clocks

    LED Lighting

    To reduce harmful interference to radiocommunications services, the FCC also regulates LED lighting which is powered by electrically semiconductor materials. The LED lighting that generates RF energy intentionally is considered as unintentional radiators.

    Further, nowadays we can find Wi-Fi or Bluetooth enabled LED lighting easily in the market. As such, FCC Part 15 still applies to those products, and they are considered as an intentional radiator similar to most digital electronic products.

    Examples

    • LED light bulbs
    • LED high bay
    • LED decking light
    • LED strip light
    • LED lighting with Wi-Fi feature
    • LED lighting with Bluetooth feature

    Household Appliances

    FCC Part 15 is only applicable for household appliances operating over 9 kHz and generates radiofrequency. For example, hairdryers, electric blankets, and paper shredders fall into the scope of the FCC Part 15.

    In addition, household appliances that do not contain any intentional radiators or unintentional radiators would be exempted from the FCC Part 15. For example, refrigerators, stoves, washing machines, and humidifiers.

    Examples

    • Heat guns
    • Paper shredders
    • Bed warmers
    • Hair straighteners
    • Hairdryers
    • Electric blankets

    Products Exempted from FCC Part 15

    FCC Part 15 covers electronic products that are classified as an intentional or unintentional radiator. It applies to most consumer electronics and electrical equipment with a CPU operating at 9kHz or higher frequency. That said, some electronic products are exempt. Here are some exemptions for your reference:

    • Refrigerators
    • Stoves
    • Washing machines
    • Water heaters
    • Rug cleaners
    • Dishwashers
    • Air conditioners
    • Fan heaters

    Additional Resources

    1. Federal Communications Commission

    2. List of FCC Lab Testing Companies

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    Disclaimer: The content on this website is provided for general information only. The content includes summaries written by our team members based on publicly available information about product safety standards, labeling, documentation, testing, processes, and other product compliance related topics. However, we don’t guarantee that we cover every single relevant regulation/standard/requirement, or that the information is free from errors, or covering every single scenario and exemption. We do make mistakes from time to time. We never provide legal advice of any sort.

    Changes/Updates: Product standards and substance restrictions are subject to frequent updates and changes. In addition, new regulations, standards, and/or requirements may also become effective at any time. We don’t update our articles whenever new standards/regulations/rules are added or changed. We recommend that you consult a lab testing company or other professional to get the latest information about mandatory standards/regulations in your market, country, or state. Lab testing companies generally stay up to date on new and updated standards and regulations.

    National/State-Level Standards/Regulations: Many articles don't cover all European national and US state standards, regulations, and requirements. We recommend that you consult a testing company or other professional to confirm all relevant (and current) national/state level standards and regulations.
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