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Quick Facts


NFPA's 2000 edition of Life Safety Code 101 allows the use of photoluminescent exit signs only if they are in compliance with Underwriters Laboratories Inc's UL924 Standard for Emergency Lighting and Power Equipment.


Underwriters Laboratories, Inc. in July 2001 updated it's standard UL924 by including test requirements for photoluminescent exit signs. Visibility testing begins when signs with the correct spelling "EXIT" and the incorrect spelling "FYIT" are exposed to five foot candles of light for sixty minutes. They are then kept in full darkness for the next ninety minutes, while eight observers ranging in age from 18 to 70 test the legibility of the two signs at a viewing distance of 50 feet. If observers can read the signs correctly and quickly after 90 minutes they have passed the observation test. The signs must also pass a mold stress relief test, a humitidy exposure test and an impact test and then are eligible for a UL924 listing upon completion of one field visit to test the production process.


UL924 listed exit signs or signs listed to UL924 are required to display two important messages on the sign face.


1.  Notice - Legible Viewing Distance 50, 75 or 100 Feet.
2.  Caution - Minimumum 5 Foot-Candle External Unfiltered Flourescent Illumination
     Must Be Present On The Sign Face At All Times Of Building Occupancy.



Osha's Occupational Safety and Health Standard, part 19190.37 for exit routes, requires exit signs to be distinctive in color and illuminated by five foot candles (54 lux) of a reiable light source. High performance photolumonescent exit signs fulfill these requirements.


Self-Limonous vs Self-Illuminating can be difficult for users to differentiate between a self luminous exit sign and a photoluminescent exit sign. "Self Luminous" is another term for radio luminescent. These signs are filled with tritium gas, have a life expentancy of 10,15 or 20 years and are treated as radioactive waste until their life's end. They cannot be thrown in the trash, but must be returned to the manufactuere for proper recycling. Recycling is very costly per sign usually in the $150 - $200 range.


Photoluminescent Exit Signs are sometimes called self-illuminating and are eco-friendly, affordable and sustainable. They have a 25 year life expectancy rating and can be disposed of normally. Be pro-active and install photolumuinescent exit signs in your facility today. They may make all the difference in the world in saving a life.

The International Code Council (ICC) adopts a requirement for the 2009 International Building Code (IBC) for photoluminescent pathway marking in the stairwells of new high-rise buildings of most occupancy groups: assembly, business, education, institutional, mercantile and transient residential (hotels).