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Fitness For Use (FFU)

Household appliances, garden equipment and tools should be user-friendly - easy to operate and in their effective performance. Whether steam ironing station, hedge trimmer or power pack drill - we check in close-to-reality tests under standardised conditions how well the products perform. 

We complete comprehensive tests both on single appliances and on large batches, e.g. within the scope of comparative product or benchmark tests.

Functional tests

Functional tests on household appliances, tools and garden equipment are carried out according to international standards or customised test programmes. The tests are close to reality, but are performed under reproducible conditions, if possible, on special test equipment.

For newly developed products we draft and test new test methods and actively participate in standardisation. 

Household appliances: Our experts cook, bake, roast and steam on the basis of test recipes. Trained test persons smell, taste and evaluate the test food. The subjective ratings are supported by a multitude of measurement data. For testing cleaning appliances we use standardised dust mixtures, natural dust or animal hair depending on the requirements. For testing laundry care devices standardised artificial soiling such as mineral oil/soot, cocoa, red wine, etc. is used.

Tools: We drill into natural stone, wood and concrete, saw different kinds of wood from natural wood to chipboard and screw into wood and metal.

Garden equipment: We shred branches of different kinds of wood and varying thickness, trim hedges and mow standardised test lawn.

Handling tests

The best functional properties of an appliance cannot be enjoyed by the user if the product is hard to operate. 

We evaluate the handling of appliances from assembly and practical use to cleaning and storage. We test whether the operating steps are intuitive and the appliance can also be used easily by people with handicaps - i.e. the concept of "design for all", which has become ever more important over the past years, has been well implemented.

For our handling tests we select test panels of persons of different age, sex and ability.

Durability tests

In order to check the durability and thus, the service life of a product we perform close-to-reality endurance tests in which the product's life cycle is simulated in fast motion. The used loads were determined in function tests carried out in advance.

Environmental compatibility

Whether and to which extent a product affects the environment, largely depends on its design and manufacture, its use and disposal.

Substances such as plasticizers and PAH may harm the user's health the same as high noise or dust emission values. A high power input, e.g. of vacuum cleaners and kitchen appliances, does not necessarily mean good performance, but in most cases only a high energy consumption. Heavy metals in products burden the environment after the end of the product's life cycle.

We assess all these aspects of a product's environmental compatibility including analyses for harmful substances (plasticizers, PAH, heavy metals, etc.), noise analyses, dust emission measurements (on household vacuum cleaners and dust removing machinery) as well as energy consumption measurements (e.g. for the EU energy label).


Frank Rebhan

+49 3722 7323-726


Andreas Kékedi

+49 3722 7323-824


Click here for more information on our services for the EU energy label and ecodesign.