Fire Extinguisher Inspection: 4 More Surprising Benefits

A fire extinguisher inspection is done to ensure that your fire extinguishers are in proper working order and can be used effectively in case of a fire breakout.

A reliable fire safety company like us at Texas Fire & Safety Equipment should carry out a scheduled fire extinguisher check as part of the overall fire suppression plan. The best thing you can do to ensure your fire extinguisher is dependable and efficient in an emergency is to have a fire extinguisher inspection.

What Is a Fire Extinguisher?

A tool used to extinguish fires is a fire extinguisher. With an internal mechanism containing pressurized carbon dioxide, water, foam, or dry chemicals, it is often portable and made of metal or plastic.

Are There Many Fire Extinguisher Types?

Here are the top five types of fire extinguishers:

Regular fire extinguisher inspection can benefit you in many ways.

Water Fire Extinguishers

Water fire extinguishers are tools to extinguish various fires, particularly those involving combustible liquids. Because water molecules seep into the fuel and render it less explosive, water-based treatments are good at putting out these fires.

Foam Fire Extinguishers

Second, foam fire extinguishers function similarly to water extinguishers but smother the fire with foam that dries solidly when released. The foam is created by mixing water and a foaming chemical, which results in a dense, white coating that prevents oxygen from getting to the fuel source and the surrounding environment. This keeps the flame from re-igniting after it has been put out.

Powder Fire Extinguisher

The powder extinguishers come in third. Powder fire extinguishers utilize dry chemicals to extinguish Class D flames caused by combustible metals like magnesium and potassium. Class D flames are also called "white-hot" fires because of the extremely high temperatures they produce, which can melt or distort the metal.

Wet Chemical Fire Extinguishers

The next type is wet chemical fire extinguishers. Water and chemicals with a potassium base are used to extinguish fires in wet chemical fire extinguishers. When these substances come into touch with flames or heated surfaces, they combine to form a thick, white foam that smothers the fire and stops it from spreading.

This fire suppressant is particularly effective in putting out Class B flames, which include those involving electrical items, paper, wood, and plastics. This is because putting out these fires takes a lot of water.

Carbon Dioxide (CO2) Extinguishers

A fire safety services provider can help keep a commercial building safe from fire.

The carbon dioxide (CO2) extinguishers are listed last. You can use CO2 extinguishers to make a fire into a smothering fire when one starts. CO2 extinguishers come in four basic varieties: solid stream, cone, fog, and multi-purpose. They can be applied to all kinds of fires except for electrical fires. The main advantage of utilizing them is that they are safe in most environments because they do not emit hazardous fumes or residue after usage.

What are the Different Fire Classes?

The origin of the fire, or what is burning, must be taken into account to determine what kind of fire extinguisher best serves the objective of putting out flames.

Class A

Solid fuels like wood, paper, or plastic are used in class A flames. They have a great chance of spreading and injuring people. Property may sustain significant damage as a result of class A fires. A Class A fire is most likely the type of fire you have seen in movies.

Class B

Fuels that burn easily, such as gasoline, paint, or diesel, start these kinds of fires. These kinds of fires are also caused by grease and oils, such as those started by burning food greased with cooking oil.

Class C

Class C fires are mostly electrical fires, including those brought on by overheated cables and circuits.

Class D

The most frequent fire in industrial settings is a class D fire. Plastics, rubber, and paints are the materials that ignite class D fires most frequently. High-flammability metals, including potassium, lithium, sodium, magnesium, and titanium, are always present in class D fires.

Fire Extinguisher Inspection Requirements

People are most likely to respond with "safety" or "fire" when asked what they think of when they see a fire extinguisher. The response can be different if you inquire about their thoughts when they see a fire extinguisher that has yet to undergo an inspection in a long time.

A fire extinguisher inspection is important in ensuring that your fire extinguishers work as well as intended.

Extinguishers are safety devices that can save lives and should be handled carefully. By eliminating heat from the fire through their chemical reaction, they are utilized to put out or suppress fire by interfering with the process that results in combustion. Although pressure gauges and filters can be added to fire extinguishers to prevent over-pressurization, they still need regular fire extinguisher inspection and maintenance to keep their good operating order.

Your fire safety technician should also ensure that the extinguisher is clearly in good shape, that it is not overly dirty, and that neither the unit nor its components exhibit any rust. The hose must fit snugly into the couplings and must not have any damage along its whole length. And it must be without any holes.

Benefits of Fire Extinguisher Inspection

Aside from ensuring that your fire extinguisher works each and every time you need it to, here are some other benefits offered by regular fire extinguisher inspection services:

Evaluating Any New Equipment

While a fire extinguisher inspection following NPFA 10 is a fire safety technician's major responsibility at your organization, other factors will be assessed during a fire extinguisher inspection. They may consider how newly relocated offices or equipment, new equipment, modifications to certain processes, or the creation of new products impact how your facility has to be secured. After the last inspection, your fire risk levels may have increased or decreased. You need to use the services of a qualified contractor to be aware of these concerns.

Ensuring That The Equipment Is Strategically Placed

A trustworthy contractor will guarantee that all your fire extinguishers are operationally sound and strategically placed. Be sure that any maintenance company's technicians are well-trained, credentialed, and use NPFA 10 documentation as a reference before hiring them.

Assessing The Layout Of Clearly Designated Escape Routes

Because they are familiar with the relevant federal and state regulations, fire extinguisher specialists will also spot any problems with your property's mandatory warning signs and escape routes. Any alterations required to satisfy government rules for clearly defined escape routes in the event of a fire will be disclosed to you by your contractor.

Giving You The Necessary Documentation

According to NPFA 10, building owners must have proof that fire extinguishers are inspected annually by state-authorized fire extinguishers and are properly maintained by state-licensed fire equipment dealers. As a result, your technician must complete all the fields on each fire extinguisher tag in your facility.

Any fire extinguishers maintained at your location must have documentation, including the serial number, type, location, and service rendered. This documentation must be on the premises with the equipment for examination by your local authority having jurisdiction.

Who Has the Authority to Perform a Fire Extinguisher Inspection?

Every fire extinguisher needs to undergo routine maintenance and servicing. Your fire extinguisher must undergo annual testing and certification by a reputable fire safety and equipment business. A thorough evaluation and internal examination are necessary every six years.

A fire extinguisher inspection should only be done by professionals.

Unless you are a legally registered fire extinguisher engineer, no one but a professional fire safety equipment technician is permitted to do a fire extinguisher inspection or maintenance. Extinguishers are meant to be powerful, long-lasting, and portable. They can only function properly if they are in good functioning order. As a general rule, fire extinguishers must be inspected at least once a year for your protection and the safety of others around you.

Do You Maintain Your Fire Extinguishers Properly?

Are you wondering if your building complies with building codes and that all fire safety equipment is updated? Reach out to us here at Texas Fire & Safety Equipment so our experts can do a proper fire extinguisher inspection and maintenance on your fire safety equipment.