QP 3 Certification
(Shop Painting Certification Program)
for QP 3 are similar to those for QP 1,
except they are specifically focused on shop coating operations.
QP 3 is a
nationally recognized program that evaluates the practices of shop
painting facilities in key areas of business. These standards are
considered to be the MINIMUM level of service and quality for
today's coatings industry.
The complex nature
of coating systems, the specific conditions and surface preparation
required by these systems, have made the QP 3 guidelines vital to
the longevity of protective coatings applied in the shop.
QP 3 is segmented
according to the type of shop:
Enclosed Shop - A
permanent facility, enclosure or building (four walls to grade and
a roof) where surface preparation and coating activities are
normally conducted in an environment not subject to outdoor
weather conditions and/or blowing dust.
Covered Shop - A
permanent facility, enclosure or building having a roof beneath
where surface preparation and coating activities are normally
conducted out of direct exposure to outdoor weather.
Open Shop - A
permanent area or facility with no roof or walls where surface
preparation and coating activities are normally conducted. The
area or facility is exposed to outdoor weather conditions and
To be certified
by SSPC, industrial contractors must demonstrate competence in
several key areas:
are evaluated through a series of submittals to SSPC, which describe
business operations. Then an impartial, on-site audit is performed
at the contractor's headquarters and shop locations to verify the
information provided in the application submittals.
More on-site audit
information can be found in both the QP 3 Application and the
Internal Audit Checklist. SSPC suggests that the contractor perform
a self-evaluation using the checklist to be sure all areas are
addressed prior to an audit.
The QP 3 application and self-evaluation checklist can be found
on the SSPC Lists, Forms & Applications page. A web link is provided
at the top of all Certification pages.
QP 3 Background:
SSPC issued the first version of the QP 3 standard in 1995, with
the certification program being released in June of 1996.
SSPC revised its QP
3 procedure and administrative certification program in 1999 to
coordinate its program with that of the American Institute of Steel
Construction (AISC). See below for more details.
SSPC QP 1, QP 2 and
QP 3 are a part of SSPC Qualification Procedure Standards developed
through the SSPC consensus process.
Worthy of Note:
The American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC) administers
a Quality Certification Program with an optional Sophisticated Paint
Endorsement certification for steel fabrication shops who apply
protective coatings prior to shipping steel to the field. SSPC
accepts the AISC/SPE as an equal "by intent" to QP 3, with the
exception of safety, health, and environmental compliance, which are
not evaluated in the AISC program.