Fire extinguishers are incredibly important safety tools that should be placed in every single building that is occupied. However, simply placing an extinguisher in the building is not enough to ensure the safety of those inside. In order to be kept in proper working order, fire extinguishers must be regularly maintained or they may not work should a fire occur.
What do you need to do to keep your fire extinguisher at the ready?
- Make sure that your extinguishers are accessible and visible. – If nobody knows where your extinguisher is kept or cannot see it, then it will not be of any use when a fire breaks out. Make sure that every extinguisher is placed somewhere that is clearly visible, marked, and totally unobstructed. It should be easy to reach.
- Maintenance should be regularly scheduled. – Even if the fire extinguisher is available and visible, it may not actually be in perfect working conditions. Many people make the mistake of thinking they have done their part after simply purchasing the extinguishers and placing them throughout the building. This is not the case. Regular maintenance is the only thing that will ensure that the device is ready to be used at any time and is required by fire code or all commercial buildings. The frequency of maintenance can depend on the manufacturing company and type, but it should be inspected at a minimum of once a year. Most extinguishers actually have tags attached that give the information from the most recent inspection to ensure that it is always up to date. In addition to annual inspections, extinguishers also require special hydrostatic testing every six and twelve years.
- Check the pressure and pull pin. – Most fire extinguishers include a pressure gauge that building owners can check themselves to ensure that the pressure is in the necessary range. Low pressure could take the extinguisher out of working order and will require a repair or refill by a professional. The pull pin is found in the extinguisher handle and is pulled out to operate the extinguisher. If the pin is missing, then it has either been used or tampered with and a professional should inspect it.
Do you know if your fire extinguisher is definitely in proper working order? The only way to know is by scheduling maintenance for your fire extinguishers. Contact the fire protection professionals at A Total Solution, Inc. today to schedule your maintenance!