Here to help
The BSI Knowledge Centre is a team of dedicated information professionals who provide authoritative information about standards. As a BSI member, we're here to help you with your national, international and overseas standards questions.
We maintain a collection of international and foreign standards which are available for loan. We can also provide access to withdrawn standards.
BSI Members and BSI Committee Members are welcome to view standards and publications at our Chiswick building, but please contact us prior to your visit.
Standards and BSI publications can be purchased through the online BSI Shop www.bsigroup.com/shop or our Customer Services team +44 (0)20 8996 9001/ email@example.com.
Available from the BSI knowledge centre:
The BSI Knowledge Centre is open 09:00 - 17:00 Monday to Friday.
Visiting the BSI Knowledge Centre
Use of the BSI Knowledge Centre is free to BSI subscribing members, BSI committee members, students and accredited journalists.
All other groups or individuals may use the Centre on a reference-only basis and this will incur a usage fee of £20 per hour.
Please contact us to arrange a visit.
Can I visit BSI to look at standards?
Yes. BSI members, BSI committee members, journalists and students with proof of student status, can use the BSI Members’ Reading Room at Chiswick free of charge. There is a £20.00 per hour charge for all other non-members. We do require at least 48 hours notice for visits, so that we can arrange any materials needed for study and to contact security for car-park access.
Can you advise me which standards to use for my business?
We can do subject searches and provide scopes or contents pages of standards if you are not sure whether to purchase. Detailed descriptions of standards are also provided on the BSI Shop. However, we are unable to recommend which standards you should use for your business.
Are you able to give interpretation of standards?
The responsibility for the correct application of a standard rests with its users, guided, where appropriate, by professional advice. Unfortunately, at BSI we are unable to give advice or interpret the content of standards. Some trade associations may be helpful in this case and we may be able to provide contact information for some of these.
Can you advise me on UK or EU Legislation or Regulation?
As British Standards are published for voluntary use and BSI is not a regulatory or government body, we are unable to advise on UK or EU Legislation or Regulation. You can find information about UK legislation on the Office of Public Sector Information website and European legislation on Eur-Lex.
I’ve spotted an error or anomaly within a standard. What do I do?
BSI welcomes any proposals for changes to standards. Please identify the passages in question, in writing, and offer specific proposals for changes to them. The Knowledge Centre will then pass the matter on to the relevant technical committee. Unfortunately, we cannot provide timescales for responses as this depends on the committee’s workload and meeting schedule.
The BSI Shop says the standard is withdrawn. Can I still use it?
A withdrawn standard is not considered current and does not have the status of ‘British Standard’, but whether it continues to be used or not is a contractual matter between the parties concerned. British Standards, current or withdrawn, are published for voluntary use.
Is there a replacement for a withdrawn standard?
If a standard has been replaced, there will be a hyperlink to its successor in the “replaced by” field on the BSI Shop record. See: Instructions on how to determine supercessions. Some withdrawn standards are not replaced.
I have purchased a product which is faulty, and there is a BS number on it. Who do I contact?
Products not meeting a standard they are claiming compliance with should be referred to Trading Standards. BSI does not monitor or enforce the use of standards, and is not able to assist with customer enquiries on individual products.
How do I become a BSI committee member?
If you are trying to find committees on a particular industry, you can browse for them on the e-committees website. When you have identified an appropriate committee, you can contact the eCommittee Support team who will pass your request to the appropriate committee secretary.
How do I get a product or company certified, tested or accredited?
The United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) is a body appointed by the UK Government to oversee certification activity by UK based companies. They should be able to assist by providing a list of contacts who can undertake testing, certification or accreditation.
Can I still use the Knowledge Centre if I’m not a member of BSI?
We give priority to BSI members. We do accept calls from non-members but are unable to carry out subject searches, loans or give discounts on standards for non-members. More information on BSI Membership can be found on our website.
We welcome your feedback on your experience of our library. Please contact the Knowledge Centre Manager with your comments.
European and International Standards Bodies
ISO (International Organization for Standardization)
ISO is a network of the national standards institutes of 157 countries. Please see their website for a list of members and their contact details.
IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission)
The IEC prepares and publishes International Standards for all electrical, electronic and related technologies
CEN (European Committee for Standardization)
CEN's 30 National Members work together to develop voluntary European Standards (ENs).
CENELEC (European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardization)
CENELEC is composed of the National Electrotechnical Committees of 30 European countries. It is responsible for preparing voluntary electrotechnical standards
Information about standards
WSSN (World Standards Services Network) - The objective of WSSN is to simplify access to international, regional and national standards information publicly available through the Web.
NSSN: A National Resource for Global Standards - E-resource developed by ANSI with a free searchable catalogue of information about various US standards.
Useful tools for working with standards
ICS: International Classification of Standards - developed by ISO, ICS is a classification scheme used by many standards organisations to classify standards and normative documents according to their field of activity. ICS codes can be very useful when searching in catalogues, databases and online shops for standards in a particular area.
UK Libraries with British Standards – many public libraries have access to British Standards either online or in hardcopy. Please contact us. Legislation
OPSI (Office of Public Sector Information)
OPSI provides access to UK, Northern Ireland Scottish and Welsh legislation.
EUR-Lex provides free access to European Union law. Here you can consult the Official Journal of the European Union as well as the treaties, legislation, case-law and legislative proposals.
Every effort is made to ensure that the information provided on this site is accurate and up to date, but no legal responsibility is accepted for any errors, omissions or misleading statements. The BSI Knowledge Centre is not responsible for, and cannot guarantee the accuracy of, information on sites that it does not manage; nor should the inclusion of a hyperlink be taken to mean endorsement by BSI Knowledge Centre of the site to which it points.
Please see our Legal Notice for more information.