Lightning Protection Systems


Lightning strikes the U.S. 25 million times a year on average¹, causing an estimated $1 billion per year² in structural damages in the United States alone. This does not include the substantial costs associated with loss of business, downtime and liability.

Adding a lightning protection system to a building increases protection from physical damage and reduces the possibility of fire. Many insurers now require the installation of lightning protection systems for commercial buildings, schools, hospitals, historic landmarks and public venues.

UL has been testing and certifying lightning protection equipment since 1908. We are the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) accredited, nationally recognized testing laboratory offering Master Label® Certificate inspections for lightning protection systems. UL Master Label® Certificates have been issued for structures such as the White House, Willis Tower (previously known as the Sears Tower) and the U.S. Department of the Treasury.


UL examines lightning protection system components and completed installations for compliance with UL’s internationally recognized Standards for lightning protection systems, or other recognized national standards. UL Master Label® Certificates are issued for structures that fully comply with the selected standard.


UL’s lightning protection inspection certificate indicates that a lightning protection system has been rigorously tested to provide maximum protection for building exteriors.

Specifying systems carrying a UL certificate helps to prevent damage and loss. The certificate provides lightning protection system buyers with the knowledge that they need to make informed choices when selecting equipment and an installer. The inspection certificate also demonstrates an uncompromising commitment to safety for insurers, local inspectors and commercial tenants.

The process of obtaining an inspection certificate has been designed to meet the needs of our customers. After the system has been installed, a UL Listed installer completes and submits the certification application. UL field representatives will then visit the location to check the lightning protection system. Initial inspections can take between one hour and a full day, depending on system complexity.

UL lightning protection inspection certificates are issued within 48 hours of completion of the inspection or after variances are corrected.

For UL Listed lightning protection installers, UL provides confidence that the system has been installed in accordance with applicable recognized standards. UL Listed lightning protection installers may request inspections of lightning protection system installations through a dedicated, secure web portal. Additionally, there is a UL online directory for UL Listed lightning protection system installers.



Master Label® Certificate Letter of Findings


Commercial structures, industrial structures, residential structures, government structures, institutional structures (hospitals, schools, airports, correctional facilities), military structures, wind turbines, solar voltaic installations and petrochemical industry


UL 96A, Installation Requirements for Lightning Protection Systems

NFPA-780, Standard for the Installation of Lightning Protection Systems

US Government Standards

FAA-STD-019e, Lightning and Surge Protection, Grounding, Bonding and Shielding Requirements for Facilities and Electronic Equipment

UFC-3-575-01, Lightning and Static Electricity Protection System

IEEE SA-998-2012, Guide for Direct Lightning Stroke Shielding of Substations

IEC 62305-1, Protection of structures against lightning: general principles

AS/NZS 1768, Lightning Protection

NFC 17 102, Protection of structures and open areas against lightning using early streamer emission lightning air terminals

CAN/CSA-B72-M87, Installation Code for Lightning Protection Systems

Any other nationally recognized standard