RoHS 3 Is Just Around the Corner: Here’s What You Need to Know


electronics manufacturing

We are just months away from the RoHS 3 deadline - is your supply chain ready? The original RoHS, or Restriction on Hazardous Substances, is an EU law from 2001 that effectively banned the use of substances deemed harmful to humans in consumer products, specifically six substances that are dangerous when humans are exposed to them: Lead, Mercury, Cadmium, Hexavalent Chromium, Polybrominated Biphenyls and Polybrominated Diphenyl Ethers. In 2013, RoHS 2 further improved regulatory control, and provided additional clarity around the legal definitions of the same six substances. RoHS 3 is unique, then, in that it further expands the list of prohibited materials from six to 10, including four new substances known as Pthalates, a group of chemicals that are used to soften plastic in order to increase flexibility. Pthalates can be found in a wide variety of products, from cosmetics to medical equipment.

Why Are Pthalates A Concern?

In rare cases of extreme exposure, Phthalates may cause damage to the body’s internal organs, including the liver, kidneys, and lungs. At least one of these Phthalates, Di (2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP) has been shown to act as a cancer-causing agent in animal test subjects*. The U.S. banned the use of Phalates in toys and children’s products in 2017**. RoHS 3 extends this ban to include any electronic equipment that comes into contact with humans.

What This Means For You and Your Products

RoHS 3 has already been adopted by EU legislature. The full ban goes into effect as of July 22, 2019. Medical devices and control systems will have an additional two years to make necessary updates to their supply chain. Suppliers have until that time to ensure all of the components they purchase are RoHS compliant. Here at ControlTek, we will be working closely with our suppliers and customers to ensure we are ready for full compliance in time for the July deadline. In some instances, that may mean sourcing alternative components that do not include banned substances. As always, we will do everything in our power to ensure compliance doesn’t negatively affect project lead times or manufacturing costs.

Have questions about RoHS 3? Contact ControlTek today to speak to one of our program managers.


*Source: Chronic Hazard Advisory Panel on Phthalates and Phthalate Alternatives' Report to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission July 2014

**Source: "CPSC Prohibits Phthalates in Children's toys and Child Care Products"

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