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Why Standardize?

Our society, economy and industry need standards because they:

  • enable products to work interchangeably or together;
  • provide assurance that a product can deliver a certain level of performance; and
  • provide the tools (for example, symbols and terminology) that make it easier for designers, manufacturers and users to communicate.

Every day we use thousands of standardized items—the light bulb in your lamp, the electrical plug on your hair dryer, the film in your camera, to name a few. Standards simplify our lives.

For more information on how standards support business, visit, developed by the American National Standards Institute.

Why do we write standards for fluid power?

Since it was formed in 1953, the National Fluid Power Association (NFPA) has worked to foster cooperation among users and manufacturers by developing recommended standards and practices.

Standards benefit the fluid power industry as a whole. Standards benefit users because they:

  • simplify the use of fluid power;
  • help educate users on how to correctly size and apply products;
  • determine product performance and how it is measured, allowing comparison;
  • communicate needs in a commonly understood language;
  • are written with input from users.

Standards benefit manufacturers because they:

  • provide uniform methods for testing products and advertising their ratings;
  • help to assure system integrity and safety in the application of fluid power;
  • help to improve efficiency of fluid power products and systems;
  • simplify the variety of products and sizes in the marketplace;
  • encourage new product development;
  • help avoid confusion in communicating with customers.

Different needs, different types of standards

Standards for fluid power products and systems fall into three basic categories:

Communication standards define the basic terms, symbols and other communication tools used in the fluid power industry. Vocabularies, graphic symbols and dimension codes are typical subjects for communication standards.

Design standards establish dimensions, tolerances or other physical characteristics of products. They ensure that fluid power products meet dimensional criteria that enable interfacing and interchangeability.

Performance standards provide a voluntary method of rating products. Pressure rating, particle counting methods used in contamination analysis, and methods of testing for strength and volume are typical performance standards.

Purchase ISO and NFPA Standards

ISO and NFPA standards are available from a number of sources. Use these links to search for and purchase fluid power standards:

If you need assistance in locating a standard, contact Carrie Tatman Schwartz or (414) 778-3347.


NFPA's standards programs

Why you should you get involved:

You benefit personally and professionally from participating in standards development by interacting with your peers in the industry and by learning more about fluid power technology and the industry itself.

Your company benefits from participating by being in a position to influence the content of standards as they are developed and/or by using its vote, as each company, large or small has the same influence at ballot time.

Membership on U.S. TAG committees entitles members to vote and comment on standards under development, thereby influencing the standards' content. If you volunteer to serve as a U.S. TAG project sponsor or ISO project leader, you are a key person in developing a standard's content, overseeing the project from beginning to end.

For more information please contact:

Denise Rockhill (U.S. TAG), (414) 778-3354
Carrie Tatman Schwartz (NFPA), (414) 778-3347