A person performing a monthly extinguisher inspection requires minimal training. Inspections must be performed each month, and a record of the event must be kept. Manual inspection records are to be recorded on a tag or label attached directly on the extinguisher or on an inspection check list maintained in a file. Our service tag is put in place on each extinguisher after completion of our annual maintenance. On the back side of our tag there are twelve spots for recording the date and initial of the person performing your monthly inspection. We recommend that you don't fill in the particular month that we perform annual maintenance, to avoid running out of room before our next service tag is applied. However if you do run out of space, you could simply record your inspection info in the note section of our tag.
Your monthly inspection should consist of at least the following items:
Make sure the extinguisher is located in it's proper place. If it isn't where it is supposed to be, you could expect more damage to occur in the event of a fire. NOBODY EXPECTS A FIRE!
People can easily be injured trying to find, or get to a fire extinguisher in an emergency. If it is somehow blocked or missing, chances of injury - or worse - become much greater. Remember that damage to buildings and property are not the most important consideration. First priority is, and should always be LIFE SAFETY.
In order for a fire extinguisher to work properly, it must have two important things. (1) Extinguishing agent and (2) propellant (pressure). Both pressure and agent must be present in proper quantity. Fire extinguishers will not work properly without either one of them. Gauges and indicators show you how much pressure is available to expel the agent onto a fire. Keep a close eye on these and contact us immediately if you suspect something is wrong. We also recommend you have a few spares on hand to replace extinguishers that require service or recharging, until they have been returned to active service.
The fact that an extinguisher contains the agent necessary to operate effectively is indicated either by verifying the gross weight which is marked upon the label, or at least by lifting it slightly to make sure it feels full.
Extinguishers are sensitive pieces of equipment because their function depends on many factors. They contain a minimum of 100 psi at all times. Bent, broken or missing parts can have a huge impact on their performance in an emergency. Pay special attention to the following conditions:
a. Bent, broken or blurred gauge
b. Bent, broken or missing handles
c. Bent, broken or missing pull pin
d. Pin held in place by anything other than the special U/L listed Tamper seal. It is made to break at a given pressure in order to remove the pull pin to operate the extinguisher.
e. Broken, damaged, plugged or missing hose or nozzle.
f. Heavy or "pitting rust" on the cylinder. This could indicate a weak spot in the cylinder, which could lead to injury or malfunction.
g. Dents or gouges into the cylinder wall. If such damage is into the steel or aluminum it also creates a weak spot in the cylinder.
*Be aware that sometimes the equipment no longer fits the hazard, the hazard no longer fits the equipment or the equipment simply becomes outdated!