Fire extinguishers are an important part of your building’s or facility’s fire safety. A hand portable fire extinguisher can allow the user to extinguish a fire in the early stages to save life and property. Businesses and organizations with public spaces are required to have fire extinguishers serviced by a trained technician once a year per code. Our trucks are stocked with the tools and items needed to provide same day service.
Gordon Fire Equipment sells all types of fire extinguishers to meet code and your facility’s needs. At the time of our first service our technician will walk through the facility with you to review the potential hazards and will recommend the correct type of fire extinguishers and locations.
The most common type is the ABC dry chemical fire extinguisher. This is the most versatile extinguisher since it can extinguish Class A, B, and C fires.
Fire extinguishers for the protection of delicate electronic equipment are different and need to be rated for Class C and have properties that will not cause corrosion or thermal shock. Equipment such as data processing or server terminals and robotic production equipment that is critical to your business should be considered for special protection.
Commercial cooking fires require a Class K fire extinguisher. This is a liquid chemical fire extinguisher that is specifically designed for cooking media fires. The fire suppression system should always be activated before the hand portable extinguisher is used.
Fire extinguishers can only be used if they can be found in a fire emergency. A means of indicating the location of extinguishers is required by OSHA and fire codes.
Hi-Vis: Three dimensional signs located above the extinguisher can be easily spotted from a distance at any angle. These are our most popular sign.
K Placard: In a commercial kitchen with a fire suppression system and a hand portable K extinguisher, a sign must be present that states the kitchen system should be actuated prior to using the extinguisher.
Fire Extinguisher Inside: Many types of commercial vehicles are required to have fire extinguishers to meet DOT standards. A label may help indicate the location of the extinguisher if it is needed in an emergency.
Fire Extinguisher Cabinets can protect fire extinguishers from the elements or from tampering. Commonly we see semi-recessed metal cabinets in offices, hallways, medical offices, and schools. Plastic cabinets are typically used outdoors because they will not corrode. We can provide cabinets in a variety of styles and types to suit your needs.
Plastic cabinets feature injection-molded ABS plastic construction, making them dent, rust, and corrosion proof. They come with a brass lock, plastic cover, and screen-printed pictograms on the sides. There is no glass to break or breaker bar to lose
Metal cabinets come in a variety of styles, sizes, and finishes. Typically these are semi-recessed into wallboard but can also be fully recessed or surface mounted. Cabinets allow fire extinguishers to be protected.
We provide service at your location or on fire extinguishers brought in to our shop. We will set up an appointment time and date to meet your needs. Once your account is set up, we will contact you each year to schedule that work so that you don’t have to keep track of it.
Our trained technician will walk through the property to evaluate the fire hazards and recommend the correct type, size, and quantity of fire extinguishers and the proper locations for them. If you already have fire extinguishers, the tech will evaluate and service them.
If you need to use a fire extinguisher or notice that the needle on the gauge is below the green zone, call us to arrange for a service call or bring the extinguisher to our shop. For some information about cleaning up after using an extinguisher,
Contractors, if you are working on or bidding a project that needs fire extinguishers and/or fire extinguisher cabinets, please send specifications and quantities to email@example.com and we’d be happy to assist.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here is a collection of frequently asked questions (FAQs) about preventative care of extinguishers. The questions are common among business and building owners. The answers are straightforward and easy to comprehend. You might consider sharing them with your customers so they will understand what work needs to be done to keep their extinguishers in proper working order.
How often do fire extinguishers need to be checked?
On a monthly basis, a quick-check is done to make sure the extinguisher is in its proper place, it is accessible, it is full, and the pressure gauge is in the green. In addition to the monthly quick check, a thorough examination is performed annually to ensure that the extinguisher is in proper working order.
Who can do the checks and examinations of fire extinguishers?
The annual examination is done in accordance to the manufacturer’s manuals and must be done by someone that is trained in servicing extinguishers. Although the monthly checks can be done by almost anyone with basic knowledge of what to look for, they are often checked by the same service technicians that do the annual examinations.
Is there other work that must be done on fire extinguishers to keep them working?
Service technicians also perform other work, including internal examinations every few years and pressure testing of the containers, called hydrostatic testing. When extinguishers are depressurized and opened, the shells are checked for corrosion and certain parts, like worn or cracked O-rings, are replaced. Once completed, the extinguisher is ready to be used on a fire.
How often do fire extinguishers need to be opened and serviced?
The internal examinations and hydrostatic testing intervals are established in national standards and referenced in local fire codes. While no extinguisher can go longer than 6 years without being opened, some extinguishers need to be opened more often, and some are even opened annually. Hydrostatic test intervals are 5 or 12 years, depending on the type of extinguisher. Once the work is completed, the extinguishers are recharged and ready for use.
Besides routine work, when do fire extinguishers need to be recharged?
Fire extinguishers need to be recharged after any use, even a partial discharge. Also, if the gauge shows the needle out of the green area, it needs recharging.
What type of company works on fire extinguishers?
Any work performed on fire extinguishers should be done by an insured fire extinguisher servicing company that employs trained extinguisher technicians. The technicians receive special training and have the proper tools, lubricants, recharging equipment and materials, manufacturer’s service manuals, and replacement parts.
Who performs the work on fire extinguishers?
Extinguisher technicians know where to look for problems and know when to replace worn or corroded parts. They also know which parts work in each extinguisher, and they know how to make necessary repairs. When work is completed, a fire extinguisher is up-to-code and is ready for use on a fire.
Is it okay to be without an extinguisher while work is being done?
No. A loaner extinguisher is installed that is equivalent or better than the one taken out for service.
These questions and answers do not provide technical detail and are intended to provide general information for business and building owners to make the right choices for preventative care of their fire extinguishers. If the advice is followed and service on extinguishers is provided by competent and qualified extinguisher technicians, the result is safer buildings and extinguishers that are ready to use.
By Mark Conroy
Mark Conroy is an engineer for Brooks Equipment Co. in their Boston, MA office and a member of the NFPA Technical Committee on Portable Fire Extinguishers.
© 2017 Brooks Equipment