aql 25 meaning: Acceptable Quality Limit AQL Calculation Explanation


This is the number of units you should randomly pull from your order for inspection based on this AQL, inspection level and total lot size. The number of defects which will help determine whether to accept or pass an inspection lot of material. AQL’s random sampling approach is more time and cost-effective when compared to a 100% inspection of all of the units. The way quality inspectors find defective pieces is tightly linked with the way they do the sampling (e.g. the number of samples they pull randomly from the total quantity). Let’s say you buy apparel, and you sell it in relatively upscale boutiques.


But a trained inspector might be able to do it in one day, whatever the inspection level you choose. In the table below, you can see how many samples would be drawn under each of the 7 inspection levels. The AQL inspection levels that you choose are relevant in different scenarios and you, the importer, need to advise your quality inspector which to follow.

What does AQL 1.5 mean?

You should only conduct a Level I inspection if you have a long history and degree of trust with your supplier. You’ll find the Special Inspection Levels next to the General Levels, and product inspectors use the General and Special Levels concurrently during an inspection. If you’d like to learn more about how the Special Levels work, read on.

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Customers would, of course, prefer zero-aql 25 meaning products or services; the ideal acceptable quality level. However, sellers and customers usually try to arrive at and set acceptable quality limits based on factors typically related to business, financial, and safety concerns. The most common AQL chosen by importers is 2.5% for major defects, 4.0 for minor defects, and 0.1 for critical defects. It is considered the “standard” tolerance for most consumer products sold in supermarkets in North America and in Europe.

Defects classification and Acceptance Quality Limit (AQL)

Note that, if you represent the customer, you are the party responsible for estimating whether this sampling plan makes sense. If you don’t specify this before the inspection, it means you delegated this judgement to another party, and protesting afterwards does not really make sense. “0/1 reject/accept level” means that the lot is passed if there is 0 defect, and rejected if there at least 1 defect.

  • Related textile and garment inspection procedure please check HERE.
  • For example, let’s say you’ve placed an order for 2,000 high-end pillow cushions.
  • Critical defects are the most serious defect category under the AQL table.
  • We use the internationally recognized Acceptable Quality Limit standard for all product inspections.

Acceptance sampling is a statistical quality-control measure that lets a company determine the quality of a product lot by testing randomly selected samples. The acceptable quality level is the worst quality level that is tolerable for a product. After knowing the way to decide how many samples to take by choosing the right inspection level, we also need to specify what quality is unacceptable. The sample size is the number of samples randomly selected from the current batch of goods. In AQL table 1, the sample sizes are represented by alphabet letters .

Industry Differences in AQL Standards

These tables are based on the work of Harold F. Dodge and other statisticians who worked to improve them over the years. During World War II, Dodge worked at the Pentagon and developed quality control standards for inspecting US military equipment. The General Levels will determine how many units you inspect overall.


In line with ISO , it refers to the lower limits of acceptable standards for consumer products over the course of a number of inspections. At Global Inspection Managing, we use AQLs to determine whether or not a product order has met a client’s specifications. The acceptable quality levels in the second table determines the maximum allowed number of defect units.

Unfortunately, inspection results found 13 major defects but 24 minor defects. Since that exceeded the allowable 21 units at the selected 4% AQL percentage, the lot was rejected. Special inspection levels (S-1, S-2, S-3, S-4) are normally used for certain types of on-site inspections or checks on a relatively small number of units in the lot. This is where an inspection requires destructive or time-consuming tests. The required sample sizes are smaller than with the general inspection levels.

The determination of what level to use is up to you. Generally for measurements we suggest using a special level, S2 for example. Products made for use in school such as calculators, notebooks, backpacks are consumer products that would be inspected the same as other general consumer products.

This provides you and your inspector with a reference for inspection of your order in the future to determine the quality level. The AQL sample size of 125 units for inspection should be chosen randomly to guarantee the accuracy of the results. Apart from the AQL sampling table, you can also use the AQL chart.

This allows the importer to make an informed decision on whether to accept or reject the entire product batch. For AQL 6.5, only 14 defects are acceptable while 15 defects or more are rejectable. For AQL 4.0, only 10 defects are acceptable while 11 defects or more are rejectable.

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Acceptable Quality Level is the maximum percent defective that can be considered acceptable. Theoretically, random sampling does not guarantee that the goods are free of defects. However, the nature and severity of these product defects can be different.

What is Acceptable Quality Level (AQL)?

First of all, thanks for the article it was a really good explanation but as my english is not so good there are things that I couldnt understand quite well. But, in some cases, checking just 5 pieces is sufficient to establish conformity without going more in depth, with a “reasonable” degree of certainty. As you have probably guessed, the numbers are lower for the producer, since the buyer’s risk is higher than than the producer’s risk.

Under normal inspection, AQL levels range from 0.065 to 6.5. The larger the AQL level, the more lenient the inspection. For general consumer products inspection, AQL level is usually set at 2.5, which implies a zero tolerance for critical defect, 2.5 for major defects, and 4 for minor defects.

  • Two special features were employed in order to gain agreement with the large body of military suppliers.
  • However, since product inspectors need to check more samples, the cost of inspection and the time required increase accordingly.
  • Customers however want a zero-defect product irrespective of the good’s use which is sometimes hard to meet by the manufacturer.
  • Now that we know your ‘Sample size code letter’ from Table 1 is ‘K,’ we will select it on the left side of Table 2.
  • Based on the table, for an AQL of 2.5%, the plan would allow 5% failures for inspection level II.

The term “AQL 2.5” forms part of hundreds of purchase orders sent to Chinese manufacturers however what does AQL 2.5 mean? Buyers and suppliers understand and agree that it is some kind of tool to measure the quality during a pre-shipment inspection. While this is true, buyers, suppliers and third party inspection companies may interpret it differently therefore more precise information are required to avoid misunderstandings. However, settling on this level by default, in order to spend less time/money on inspections, is very risky.

Please click here to download the sample inspection report for the textile and garment. And contact us for the typically classify defects in quality control inspection in garment industry. Most of the acceptance decisions of export shipments are made based on AQL-based random sampling plans.