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Sunday, May 16, 2010


About Codes & Standards

What is a standard?
A standard can be defined as a set of technical definitions and guidelines, “how to” instructions for designers, manufacturers and users. Standards promote safety, reliability, productivity and efficiency in almost every industry that relies on engineering components or equipment. Standards can run from a few paragraphs to hundreds of pages, and are written by experts with knowledge and expertise in a particular field who sit on many committees.

Are standards mandatory?
Standards are considered voluntary because they serve as guidelines, but do not of themselves have the force of law. ASME cannot force any manufacturer, inspector, or installer to follow ASME standards. Their use is voluntary.
Standards become mandatory when they have been incorporated into a business contract or incorporated into regulations.

What is a code?
A code is a standard that has been adopted by one or more governmental bodies and has the force of law.

Why are standards effective?
Standards are a vehicle of communication for producers and users. They serve as a common language, defining quality and establishing safety criteria. Costs are lower if procedures are standardized; training is also simplified.
Interchangeability is another reason. It is not uncommon for a consumer to buy a nut in California for a bolt purchased in New Jersey.

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