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Fire Extinguisher Inspection Checklist

Updated March 23, 2017

You may not be aware of it, but the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) generally recommends that a fire extinguisher receive an inspection every 30 days. This inspection ensures that the extinguisher is always fully charged and operable. A checklist can help to ensure that everything is functioning and that the fire extinguisher is available when it is needed.

In Assigned Area

Make sure that the fire extinguisher is in its assigned place. Fire extinguishers are typically located near areas where fires are the most likely to occur. If it is a portable fire extinguisher, it is typically mounted on the wall where it can be easily removed.

Not Blocked or Hidden

Check that the fire extinguisher is not hidden behind boxes or stored equipment. When storage space is at a premium, unused equipment is sometimes moved in front of fire extinguishers, making it hard to reach. Keep supplies and equipment away from the area where the fire extinguisher is, so that it remains easy to locate and access.

Recommended Pressure Level

A fire extinguisher is equipped with a gauge that indicates whether it is undercharged, fully charged or overcharged. The needle of the gauge typically sits in the middle of a green arc and this is considered a normal charge. The green arc represents a full charge and means that the fire extinguisher is ready for use. If the extinguisher does not have a full charge, call your local fire brigade about getting them to recharge it for you, or to recommend someone who does that.

Nozzles and Parts

Inspect the nozzle and other parts of the hose to make sure they are not blocked. Check the hose for cracks and holes that could affect the flow of the chemical. If there is damage, the parts of the fire extinguisher will require service.

Pin and Seal

The fire extinguisher is equipped with a pin and tamper seal. If the pin has been removed or the seal is torn, the fire extinguisher may have already been used and is possibly empty or low on chemical. Replace or have the extinguisher serviced as soon as possible to have it ready in the event it is needed.

Recognising Damage

Examine the fire extinguisher for dents, leaks or other signs of damage. Wipe off any dirt, oil or debris that may corrode the extinguisher or prevent someone from reading the label. Replace the fire extinguisher if there is evidence of damage.

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About the Author

Based in Atlanta, Casey Kennedy has been writing online content since 2009. She specializes in writing about small business, careers, real estate, and ecommerce. She also enjoys writing about a variety of other subjects, including home improvement, gardening, and pet care. She attended the Academy of Art online, studying interior architecture and design while pursuing commercial flight training at Aviation Atlanta in Georgia.