Ensuring Child Safety: A Guide to CPSC Toy Safety Testing

Navigating the CPSC compliance process requires a thorough understanding of the regulations

by | Jan 24, 2023

In the world of toys and children’s products, safety is not just a concern; it’s a paramount priority. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) sets rigorous standards to ensure that toys and related products sold in the United States meet the highest safety requirements. CPSC toy safety testing is an essential process that manufacturers, importers, and distributors must navigate to protect children from potential hazards. This article explores the intricacies of CPSC toy safety testing, why it’s important, and how stakeholders can ensure compliance with these critical standards.

Understanding CPSC Toy Safety Standards

The CPSC is tasked with protecting the public from unreasonable risks of injury or death associated with consumer products. When it comes to toys, the standards are comprehensive, covering everything from mechanical and physical properties to flammability, and chemical composition. The goal is to prevent accidents that can occur from choking, ingestion, sharp points, and toxic substances, among other hazards.

Key Areas of CPSC Toy Safety Testing

  • Mechanical and Physical Properties: This testing assesses the toy’s design and construction to ensure there are no physical hazards, like small parts that could be a choking hazard for young children.
  • Flammability: Toys and certain children’s products must meet specified flammability standards to reduce the risk of burn injuries.
  • Chemical Testing: Ensures toys do not contain harmful levels of toxic substances, including lead, phthalates, and other hazardous chemicals.
  • Labeling Requirements: Adequate warning labels and age grading on toys provide crucial information to prevent injuries from misuse.

The Importance of CPSC Compliance

Compliance with CPSC standards is not optional; it’s a legal requirement for any toy or child’s product sold in the U.S. market. Beyond legal obligations, there are several reasons why compliance is critical:

  • Child Safety: The primary purpose of CPSC testing is to protect children from potential harm, ensuring they can play and learn in a safe environment.
  • Market Access: Compliance is necessary for legal access to the U.S. market, one of the largest consumer markets globally.
  • Brand Integrity: Manufacturers and brands that adhere to CPSC standards can build trust with consumers, enhancing their reputation and competitiveness.

Navigating the CPSC Toy Safety Testing Process

The process of CPSC compliance involves several steps, from product design and pre-testing to third-party certification and continuous compliance. Here’s how stakeholders can navigate these requirements:

  1. Understand Applicable Standards: Identify which CPSC standards apply to your product. This may require consulting with experts or legal advisors to interpret the regulations accurately.
  2. Pre-Testing: Conduct internal testing during the product design phase to identify and mitigate potential hazards early on.
  3. Third-Party Testing and Certification: Obtain certification from a CPSC-accepted laboratory that your product complies with all relevant safety standards. This certification must accompany the product through the supply chain.
  4. Labeling and Documentation: Ensure that all required labeling is accurate and that you maintain records of testing and certification as required by the CPSC.

Leveraging Expertise for Compliance

Given the complexity of CPSC standards and the potential risks of non-compliance, many companies turn to specialized testing laboratories and compliance consultants. These experts can provide valuable insights into the regulatory requirements, assist with pre-testing and product development, and facilitate the certification process.

How Contract Laboratory Can Help

Contract Laboratory helps toy makers and toy manufacturers with the outsourcing of their CPSC Toy Safety Testing. The following are examples of projects from toy makers and toy manufacturers >

  • Large Toy manufacturer needs a Textile laboratory for denier counts and construction confirmation testing for three tricot fabric cuts.
  • Consumer Products Laboratory needed for ISO 8124 or EN71 testing of soft play book for children 3+ to ISO 8124, Safety of Toys or EN71.
  • Consumer Products Safety Laboratory needed for product testing and certification for a children’s toy/furniture product children’s step/stool made of wood.
  • Company selects textile products (toy-like) that require testing for the Canadian market There are 2 textile products that appeal to be used by children under 3 years old Also an infant textile bib with velcro. Testing includes Textile Flammability Regulations (SOR/2011-22) No flame retardant PBB Prohibition of Certain Toxic Substances Regulations, 2012 (SOR/2012-285) Toys Regulations (SOR/2011-17)
  • Analytical Chemistry Laboratory needed for benzene testing of toys to potentially develop program going forward
  • A toxicology laboratory is needed for GLP toxicity testing such as acute oral toxicity tests for new plastic polypropylene baby toys.
  • Los Angeles area materials laboratory needed for ASTM Testing of toy building kits


View more incoming  CPSC Toy Safety Test Requests


Whether you manufacture or distribute dolls, games, puzzles, electronic play robots, or scooters, Contract Laboratory can help you with the outsourcing of your CPSC Toy Safety Testing.  If your company is a toy maker or toy manufacturer, ensure the safety of your toys by finding a laboratory to perform your CPSC toy safety testing. Contact Us for more information, or submit a Toy Safety Test Request online.

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