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UL offers comprehensive testing, certification and professional training in engineering best practices and regulatory standards to sign manufacturers of: cabinet signs, neon and LED channel letters, banner signs, awning signs, neon window signs and outline lighting, changing message signs and more.


UL services covers electric signs employing incandescent lamps, LEDs (light-emitting diodes), electro-luminescent panels, neon tubing, fluorescent lamps, high-intensity-discharge lamps or combinations. Cord-and-plug connected signs do not have provision for permanent mounting to a building or structure.

Changing Messages and Advertising

As sign technology advances, so does UL, providing services for illuminated and nonilluminated changing message signs intended to be installed and connected to an electrical supply source in accordance with the National Electrical Code, ANSI/NFPA 70.

Illuminated changing message signs include incandescent, fluorescent, HID (high intensity discharge), electric discharge tubing (including neon) LED (light emitting diode), and other sources of illumination.
Non-illuminated changing message signs include scrolling, flipper, LCD (liquid crystal display), and similar types that are generally motor operated or electronically controlled.
Sign Retrofit Kits

UL provides safety services for retrofit sign conversions consisting of subassemblies or kits intended for field installation in Listed signs. Scrolling units (motor-operated message assemblies), devices to change the type of illumination ( such as from incandescent to fluorescent), or combinations thereof consist of subassemblies intended for field installation in specific Listed permanently connected electric signs.

Light-emitting diode (LED) kits consist of the power source, the LEDs and the LED mounting means necessary to change the type of illumination originally contained in the sign to LED illumination. The kit installation instructions specify the type of sign in which the kit is intended to be installed.
Click here to read about some frequently asked questions pertaining to retrofitting signs.

Skeletal Neon and Outline Lighting Systems

UL provides safety services for Skeletal neon signs and outline lighting systems marked “The neon supply(ies) complies(y) with the secondary ground-fault protection requirements of UL 2161” are provided with neon transformers and power supplies that comply with the secondary ground-fault protection requirements.

SAM Manual

The Sign Component Manual (also known as the SAM) contains all of the major components associated with the construction of electric signs including conduit, gasket materials, insulating bushings, neon transformers & power supplies, sub-component digital signs, LED modules, LED power supplies, sign face construction materials, and LED drivers & controllers. Components and accessories in the SAM are evaluated to comply with UL879, Standard for Electric Sign Components.

The SAM is designed to be a buyer’s guide for sign shops and designers. Any manufacturer who wants to build signs that are exempt from testing and streamline their UL certification process will pick from components already included in the SAM. The SAM lists the conditions of acceptability for each component to help the sign designer specify pre-qualified components. The SAM is also used by UL Representatives performing UL Follow-Up Service inspection.

The Sign Component Manual (SAM) is now incorporated in the UL iQ family of databases and can be accessed under the title “UL iQ for Sign Components”. The searching power and features of iQ will make it easier to find specific sign components and accessories. The iQ for Sign Components is a live database that reflects the latest certification information thus eliminating the need to wait for periodic updates of a manual. Click here to begin using the iQ for Sign Components.

For more information about the SAM or UL’s Sign certification programs, please contact John Gallo, Sr. Staff Engineer, at

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