Petzl 2D (QR) Codes – Save time inspecting!

Did you know that all Petzl PPE products have individual serial numbers for efficient logging and tracking of your gear?

You may have also noticed a 2D code printed on each piece of Petzl gear, it looks like a QR code. It’s not exactly a QR code, it’s actually a 2D Rectangular Datamatrix code and it contains the individual serial number of that piece of gear. This can be scanned into a spreadsheet, database or tracking software such as Papertrail.

The codes can be scanned by a compatible 2D Scanner* or even a phone. Our experimentation has found that the smaller karabiners or those that don’t have a lot of contrast between the colour of the karabiner and the colour of the printing (i.e. greys and silvers) can be a bit tricky for some phones and scanners – we are waiting on some tech data back from Petzl to advise which is the best model scanner for these small items. But we were able to scan them using one or all of these tricks:

  • make sure the karabiner is on a flat surface and the code is level
  • make sure you have good lighting
  • if that doesn’t work take a closeup clear photo of the code and then use NeoReader® App (more info below) and select code from the photo gallery.

If you use a phone-based inspection App, such as Papertrail, this will save you a heap of time, particularly when inspecting so many karabiners!

There are several really good FREE phone based scanning apps for 2D codes, we tried and had success with these two:

Apple:   NeoReader and i-nigma   Android:    NeoReader and i-nigma   Windows:  NeoReader  and i-nigma

You can scan the serial number and then copy/paste to a spreadsheet on your phone, scan straight into an inspection app or send it to someone via text or email.

If you are working from a desktop/notebook, then using a 2D Barcode Scanner (USB or Bluetooth) is the way to go. * We have put in a call to Petzl France to find out which model scanners they recommend for scanning the small items, but otherwise all the larger codes scan on any of the 2D Barcode Scanners out there on the web. We will update this post when we get the model or specs for the best scanner.

You can scan the serial number straight into a cell on a spreadsheet or a database, saving you time and money without the need for expensive RFID Chips or stickers that other manufacturers charge you for, as the 2D codes are printed on every piece of PPE by Petzl. Apps like Papertrail also include the Petzl Inspection routines as per the manual forms you can find on this site.


Posted in General News, Pro News, Sport News.


  1. This is an excellent idea that should save us a lot of time entering new products into our asset register and eliminating serial number entry errors. However we are unable to scan the codes on products such as the RollClip and Am’D due to the code being impressed on an uneven surface. We have tried the suggested software with a number of mobile devices and camera systems. We have also tried some expensive symbol scanners with resolutions of less than 0.2 mm.

    There has been some success using a magnifier lens with these scanners however as yet it has proved impossible to scan a RollClip.
    Is there a suggested industrial scanner and technical specification that works reliably with all Petzl codes ?

    • Hi Alister, we were just testing the other day and have also had the issue with a few karabiners too. We have put a call in to Petzl France to see if there is a specific scanner recommended. Let me follow-up and advise Regards Tim

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