BIFMA X5.4 Association Ballot

BIFMA has been reviewing its ANSI/BIFMA X5.4-2012 – Lounge and Public Seating – Tests Standard.  BIFMA’s released the new version of the standard, ANSI/BIFMA X5.4-2020 – Public and Lounge Seating, on May 14th.  The most salient change of this new edition is that this new edition is based on a 275 lbs individual instead of 253 lbs which results in higher loads used for many of the tests and brings it in line with BIFMA X 5.1.

The table below is a test-by-test comparison between the 2012 version and the newly released 2020 version.  This will hopefully help you follow the newly implemented changes and how it might impact your products. The changes were categorized in one of four ways:

  • No impact: The change has no direct impact on completed tests
  • No retesting required: The change renders the applicable test less severe and tests conducted to the previous version of the standard do not need to be redone
  • May require retesting: Depending on the configuration of the item tested or the laboratory methodology, a retest may be required
  • Retest required: Any completed tests require retesting 

ANSI/BIFMA X5.4 standard vs association ballot test-by-test comparison

Section
#
Section Title Comparison Conclusion
Title Title is now “Public and Lounge Seating” instead of “Lounge and Public Seating – Tests” No impact
1 Scope -Scope now includes restaurant/dining/café settings, visitor seating in patient rooms, and folding chairs.
-95th percentile male weight increased to 275lb from 253 lbs
2.8 Definitions – folding chair Added definition No impact
2.15 Definitions – general-purpose large occupant office chairs Added definition No impact
2.18 Definitions – leg base Added definition No impact
2.19 Definitions – legrest Added definition No impact
2.32 Definitions – recliner Added definition No impact
2.36 Definitions – stool Added definition No impact
2.33 Definitions – seat or seating position When calculating number of seating positions width of seating surface now divided by 28″ (instead of 22.5″) and rounded to the nearest integer (instead of rounded down) May require retesting:
Units that were previously considered single-seaters may now be multi-seaters
3.1.3 General – Testing Considerations Added statement that if proof loads are held longer than 10 seconds and damage occurs, it is not considered a failure No retesting required:
Clarification is more lenient
3.5 General – Measurements Added ISO 24496 CMD as an option No retesting required:
BIFMA CMD still valid
3.6 General – Tolerances Added requirement for calibration of devices used to measure test parameters May require retesting:
If your lab’s calibration is not as stringent as new requirements
3.9 General – Test Environment Added that sample should be stored in ambient conditions for at least 24 hours before testing. Conditions should be maintained between 15 to 27°C and 10-70% RH and if outside these limits they should be recorded No retesting required:
New limitations are suggestions
5.1 Backrest Strength Test – Horizontal – Static – Applicability Added statement that test does not apply to recliners with user force activated back recline mechanisms unless backrest can be locked into position or stops at less than 35 degrees from the vertical.
Retest required:
New load on the seat changes the test configuration
5.3.4 Backrest Strength Test – Horizontal – Static – Test Setup Limited multi-seat test for units with >2 seats to two adjacent positions.
5.3.5 Backrest Strength Test – Horizontal – Static – Test Setup A 240lb load is now placed on the seat
5.4.2 Backrest Strength Test – Horizontal – Static – Proof Load Proof load now held for 10 seconds instead of 1 minute
6.3 Backrest Strength Test – Vertical – Static – Test Setup Limited multi-seat test for units with >2 seats to two adjacent positions. No resting required:
Units where 3 or more seating positions were previously tested concurrently are worst case
6.4.2 Backrest Strength Test – Vertical – Static – Proof Load Proof load now held for 10 seconds instead of 1 minute No resting required:
1 min proof load more critical than 10 seconds
7 Backrest Durability Test – Horizontal – Cyclic Clarification for units with center shared backrest
Retest required:
Increased load on seat makes the test more severe
7.3.4 Backrest Durability Test – Horizontal – Cyclic – Test Setup Limited multi-seat test for units with >2 seats to two adjacent positions.
7.3.6 Backrest Durability Test – Horizontal – Cyclic – Test Setup Load on seat increased to 240 lbs from 225 lbs.
8.3 Backrest Durability Test – Vertical – Cyclic Limited multi-seat test for units with >2 seats to two adjacent positions. No resting required:
Units where 3 or more seating positions were previously tested concurrently are worst case
9.4.2 Arm Strength Test – Horizontal – Static – Proof Load Proof load now held for 10 seconds instead of 1 minute No resting required:
1 min proof load more critical than 10 seconds
10.4.2 Arm Strength Test – Vertical – Static – Proof Load Proof load now held for 10 seconds instead of 1 minute
May require retesting:
Units with height-adjustable arms need to be re-evaluated
10.5.2 Arm Strength Test – Vertical – Static – Acceptance Level Sudden drop of 1 inch on height-adjustable arms is no longer acceptable during proof loading.
14.3 Seating Durability Tests – Cyclic – Test Setup -Drop height increased to 1.4 from 1.2.
-Weight applied on all other seats increased to 240 lbs from 225 lbs.
Retest required:
Increased drop height and load on seat make the test more severe
14.4 Seating Durability Tests – Cyclic – Test Procedure Limited number of identical seating positions to be evaluated (minimum two).
15.3 Drop Test – Dynamic – Test Setup -Added requirement that any center columns not to touch the test platform during functional load.
-Added note that casters shall be placed in worst-case position.
May require retesting:
Units with center columns tested in contact with the ground and/or units with casters not tested in the worst case position require retesting
15.4 Drop Test – Dynamic – Test Procedures Limited number of identical seating positions to be evaluated (minimum two) for both functional and proof load.
16.1 Leg Strength Test – Front and Side – Applicability Test is no longer applicable to folding chairs without locking mechanisms.
No retesting required:
Test scope reduced, allows greater flexibility for testing, proof load now limited and applied for less time
16.3.1 & 16.4.1 Leg Strength Test – Front and Side – Test Setup Restraining device may now be used to prevent unit from overturning.
16.3.2.2 & 16.4.2.2 Leg Strength Test – Front and Side – Test Procedure – Proof Load -Proof load now limited to 150 lbf.
-Proof load now held for 10 seconds instead of 1 minute
17.1 Unit Drop Test – Dynamic – Applicability -Test is no longer applicable to units with casters.
-Units to be combined with other units to be tested in combined configuration.
May require retesting:
Combined units that were not tested together will require retesting
18.1.3 & 18.2.3 Caster/Unit Base Durability Test – Cyclic – Test Setup Load on unit increased to 270 lbs from 250 lbs. Retesting required:
Increased load on unit makes test more severe
19.3 Swivel Test – Cyclic – Test Setup -Load on seat increased to 270lbs from 250lbs.
-Added clarification regarding “return-to-center” mechanisms.
Retesting required:
Increased load on unit makes test more severe
20.1 Tilt/rocker/glider Mechanism Test – Cyclic – Applicability Clarified that test applies to units with rocker or glider mechanisms but not to curved bottom rocking chairs or reclining mechanisms (see new test #25)
Retesting required:
Increased load on unit makes test more severe
20.3 Tilt/rocker/glider Mechanism Test – Cyclic – Test Setup Load on seat increased to 240 lbs from 225 lbs.
21.1 Stability Tests – Applicability Individual segments of ganged units tested individually unless otherwise specified by manufacturer. May require retesting:
Ganged units that were not tested this way may require retesting
21.3.1 Rear-Stability for Non-tilting Units – Test Setup -Added additional guidance for units with casters and rotating units.
-Glides now adjusted to midpoint rather than worst case position.
-Added additional guidance for disk positioning.
-Force now applied 0.25 inch from the top disk instead of 0.24 inch.
No retesting required:
Changes make test less severe
21.4 Rear-Stability for Tilting Units Added note to clarify that test is applicable to recliners. May require retesting:
If recliners were not previously tested
21.4.1 Rear-Stability for Tilting Units – Test Setup -Glides now adjusted to midpoint rather than worst case position.
-Use of new template to locate position of disks on the unit.
Retesting required:
Changes result in a slightly different test method.
21.4.2 Rear-Stability for Tilting Units – Test Procedure Test procedure modified to be more in-line with BIFMA X5.1.
21.5 Front Stability for Units <80 lbs New test procedure for units<80lbs more in-line with BIFMA X5.1. May require retesting:
Units <80 lbs will need to be retested.
21.6 Front Stability for Units ≥80 lbs Added note to clarify that test is applicable to without legrests or with retracted legrests.
May require retesting:
If recliners not tested as described
21.6.1 Front Stability for Units ≥80 lbs – Test Setup -Glides now adjusted to midpoint rather than worst case position.
-Added statement that recliner legrests shall be retracted.
21.6.2 Front Stability for Units ≥80 lbs – Test Procedure A fixed force of 32 lbf now applied to all units rather than force required to transfer unit weight to front legs.
22.3 Tablet Arm Load Ease – Test Setup -Load decreased to 55 lbs from 77 lbs.
-Load application point is now 1 inch from edge instead of tablet center.
May require retesting:
Configuration of the tablet arm may make the new test setup more severe, even with decreased load.
24 Structural Durability Test – Side-to-Side – Cyclic New test similar to the one in BIFMA X5.1. May require retesting:
If this test is applicable to the unit it must be done
25 Cycle Test for Recliners – Backrest and/or Legrest Mechanism Durability New test. May require retesting:
Recliners need to be tested
26 Legrest Strength Test – Static Load New test. May require retesting:
Recliners with integral legrests need to be tested
27 Footrest Static Load Test for Stools – Vertical New test. May require retesting:
Stools with legrests need to be tested
28 Footrest Durability Test for Stools – Vertical – Cyclic New test. May require retesting:
Stools with legrests need to be tested
Appendix A Impact Test Bag Construction Sand removed as possible fill media. May require retesting:
If your lab uses sand in their impact bags
Appendix B Stability Disk Construction Details Added text for clarification. No retesting required:
Intent of the Appendix is unchanged
Appendix C Front Stability Load Locator Fixture New appendix (informative).
No retesting required:
Informative Appendices
Appendix D Weight Loads/Ratings New appendix (informative).
Appendix E Recliner Pinch Point Cautions New appendix (informative).
Appendix F Example of a Recliner Cycle Test Fixture New appendix (informative).
Appendix G Recliner Front Stability with Legrest Extended New appendix (informative).
Appendix H Figure of Leg-Base Chair New appendix (informative).
Appendix I Template for Rear Stability New appendix (informative).
Appendix J Summary of Changes New appendix (informative).
Appendix K Guidance for Seating Units or Tables with Privacy Screens New appendix (informative).
Appendix L Guidance for Seating Flammability New appendix (informative).
Appendix M Structural Durability Test – Front-to-Back – Cyclic New appendix (informative).
Appendix N Guide for Seating Positions for Non-linear Multiple Seating Units New appendix (informative).


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Disclaimer

All of the information and opinions contained in this blog are made with the information, and the understanding that we have reviewed at the time of publishing.  However, despite our efforts, we do not offer any guarantee of their accuracy, thoroughness of our investigation, or validity. The author of this blog is not liable for any inaccuracies or any losses or damages that may result from the use of the information or data contained herein. This blog has not been reviewed or verified for its accuracy by any peer group associates prior to publication.