Rain and Cold


EN 343 - Protection against rain


This standard specifies test methods and demands on fabrics and seams in garments intended to protect against foul weather, i.e. weather conditions with combinations of precipitation (rain, snow), fog, humidity and wind at temperatures down to 5°C.

Resistance to water penetration and water vapour resistance are the two main properties which are tested in the EN 343.

The following parameters are used:

X: Resistance to water penetration (3 levels)

Resistance to water penetration is the most important quality for an adequate protection. The resistance to water penetration is expressed in kPa but a more understandable expression is in millimetre water columm.

Y: Water vapour resistance - Breathing properties (3 levels)

The classic and easy to understand unity for breathability was defined in g/m2per 24 hours. However EN 343 uses a water vapour resistance value Ret (m2. Pa/W), which is measured by the 'so-called' skinmodel test ISO 11092.


EN 14058: Protection against cold - Temperatures from and above -5°C


This standard determines the requirements for personal protective clothing to be worn at temperatures from and above -5°C.

The following parameters are used:

A: Thermal resistance class (3 levels)

This Rct value in m2K/W is measured on a fabric sample of the material assembly; so it is not measured on a thermal manikin.

For your info: Rct 1 m2. K/W equals 10 TOG or 6.53 CLO (alternative expressions of thermal insulation).

B: Air permeability class (3 levels) (Optional, X means not tested)

The air permeability of the materials used have an influence on the extent by which the warmed up insulating air layers in the garments can be replaced by cooler, fresh air. This air permeability (AP) is expressed in mm/s.

C: Water penetration resistance class (2 levels) (Optional, X means not tested)

When a high waterproof level is necessary, a maximum resistance to water vapour permeability RET-value of 55 m2. Pa/W is requested.

D: Icler,; basic resulting thermal insulation (Optional, X means not tested)

Explanation: see 'e' below.

E: Resulting thermal insulation (Optional, X means not tested)

Cfr. En 342:2003, these values (in m2K/W) are measured by putting the garment on a 'moving' (Icler) or 'static' (Icle) thermal man-like manikin with similar reference underwear type 'R' (with the exception of the balaclava and gloves; total Icler insulation underwear +/- 0.175 m2K/W).When assessed, the min. Icler value is 0.17 m2K/W and/or the min. Icle is 0.19 m2. K/W.