What are IP ratings, and how does it affect my decision when buying a walkie talkie?

What are IP ratings, and how does it affect my decision when buying a walkie talkie? 1

Every consumer searches for durability when purchasing a product. When it comes to walkie talkies, there are differing levels of durability. This means there are some more suited to certain conditions than others. This is referred to as an IP rating. 

So what is an IP rating, and what do I need to look out for? 

An IP rating has two numbers; the first specifies the level of protection provided against solid elements, such as dust and dirt. The second indicates the water resistance of the device. Both of the ratings help users determine if the product is appropriate for the environment, it’s going to be used. 

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Solid items 

Solid item values range from 1 to 6, with 6 being the highest level of protection possible. Levels 5 and 6 refer to dust resistance; level 5 protects against dust; some dust may still enter, but equipment operation is unaffected. There is no risk of dust penetration at Level 6, as it is totally dust-tight.


There are more levels for water resistance, with the ratings going to number 8. The lowest levels demonstrate resistance a device has from water drops and sprays. Levels 7 and 8 then show how a device is resistant to temporary water submersion. Level 7 can resist a 30-minute temporary submersion in up to 1 metre of water. A rating of 8 provides protection from prolonged submersion in water.

Product Examples 

When browsing for walkie talkies to purchase, it’s important to consider the environment you’ll be using them in; 

  • The Motorola XT185 is IP54 rated, so it will be suitable for use across retail stores, warehouses and school playgrounds. 
  • The Motorola XT420 is IP55 rated, making it an appropriate walkie talkie for retail, hospitality, schools and even small construction sites.

See the detailed guide below for a complete breakdown of each level and an example of how to understand an IP rating;

IP Rating Guide

What are IP ratings, and how does it affect my decision when buying a walkie talkie? 2
Image Credit via Radio Solutions

0 – If there is a 0 in the IP rating, this means that the device does not have any protection against that substance. 

X- There will occasionally be an X in one of the number ratings; this means that the numerical value has only been provided for one of the two ingress ratings. This doesn’t mean the device has no resistance against the substance, just that no figures are available.

Looking to purchase walkie talkies but unsure what model will be efficient for the environment it’ll be used in? Get in touch with the Radio Solutions team, who will be happy to provide assistance and advice on the best walkie talkie for you. 

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With walkie talkies for all sectors and environments, Radio Solutions will have a device to meet your requirements. The team can also be contacted through the Live Chat feature on the website. 

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