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Final Random Inspection for Household Goods (FRI)

Final Random Inspections for household goods (FRI) are by far the most popular tool for securing supply chain quality control. FRI normally takes place once 80% of the goods are available. The final result of an inspection usually triggers the shipment and the payment. The accuracy and reliability of your inspection report are crucial in order to take appropriate decisions regarding your products.

Based on the Acceptable Quality Level (AQL tables), a random sampling of the goods subject to inspection is determined in order to statistically infer the quality of the lot. (Click here to learn more about the AQL). In most of cases FRIs evaluate three main aspects of product quality:

Testing Product Conformity to the Required Specifications

1) The product conformity to the required specifications

All of the important aspects of the products will be verified by our inspectors: gross dimensions, weight and packaging, overall aspect and colours, markings, functions and components figure among the most relevant ones.

The inspector shall base his or her evaluation on the product specifications and ideally our customer should make available a “reference sample” at the factory location or directly at our inspection office. For the office location and address please check on our interactive map.

Detecting A Number of Visual Defects
A typical AQL table in use
A continuation of the AQL chart which is in use

2) A number of visual defects:

The decision to opt for either a three grade general inspection or a four grade special inspection, will determine the level of severity and the size of the sampling lot to be inspected. As a common practice, the special inspection level will only be used for destructive testing, complex product testing-such as assembly or hipot tests for example- or highly time consuming testing to evaluate a restricted number of products.

For example, if a purchaser is sourcing 12.000 electrical toys from a factory and wants to apply level 2 testing (average severity) for the general inspection level then the quantity of product to be inspected is defined by the letter M and set at 315 units.

Our inspector will then evaluate and screen the defects on this defined lot. There are three categories of product defects:

Critical – A critical defect is one that judgment and experience indicate is likely to:

a. result in hazardous or unsafe conditions for individuals using, maintaining, or depending upon the products; or

b. Prevent performance of the tactical function of a major end item. A critical defective is a unit of product that contains one or more critical defects.

Major – A major defect is one, other than critical, that is likely to result in failure, or to reduce materially the usability of the unit of product for its intended purpose. A major defective is a unit of product that contains one or more major defects.

Minor – A minor defect is one that is not likely to reduce materially the usability of the unit of product for its intended purpose, or is a departure from established standards having little bearing on the effective use or operation of the unit of product. A minor defective is a unit of product that contains one or more minor defects3.

For the previous example, when setting 2.5% for major and 4.5% for minor defects, this means that up to 14 major defects may be found as well as a maximum of 21 minor defects.Above these numbers,the product sample is rejected.

Customers can define their level of acceptable defects by category by using product sheet check-up list. You may also mandate API to use its own product sheets and opt to rely on our expertise to define minor and major defects by product type. In fact, advising customers regarding which quality requirements are best applied is one of the cornerstones of our product specialization.

  1. A reference sample is a customer approved version of the product which will stand as the reference product for our inspector.
  2. Source: the ANSI/ASQ Z1.4-2003 Standard

3) On-site simplified product testing:

A certain number of simple tests can be performed in the factory itself to check for several product quality aspects, for instance:

  • Loading tests
  • Hipot tests for electrical products
  • Simplified user testing
  • Drop tests for toys

However due to the time constraints and the limited testing equipment available for on-site factory use, a full assessment prior to shipment is not possible. We suggest guaranteeing your product quality by performing more comprehensive testing in one of our local labs using the pre-shipment testing approach. Pre-shipment tests are simplified tests which can be performed in one, three or five days and which have been developed for the purpose of ensuring total quality control in your sourcing process.

In partnership with our sister company API lab testing, API teams are able to coordinate and drive the entire process of qualification/product certification and inspection/shipment release for a given product or complete product lines. 

Benefits of FRI

Ensure Goods Quality Matches with Customer's Expectations

Ensure Goods Quality Matches with Customer's Expectations

Control Quantities Before Shipment

Control Quantities Before Shipment

Identify Production Drifts

Identify Production Drifts

Booking Your Inspection

API guarantees delivery of the inspection report within 24 hours1 after the completion of your inspection. The normal time frame required to book an inspection booking is 5 working days prior to inspection in order to ensure a smooth process and a proper exchange of information.

  1. Except in exceptional and/or unforeseeable circumstances.
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