How to Take Apart a Fire Extinguisher

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A fire extinguisher is an important safety device to have in every house. After a fire extinguisher has run its course or is too old to recharge, you can recycle it. Prior to recycling a fire extinguisher, empty the extinguisher and then disassemble it.

Disassembling the extinguisher allows the recycling facility to know that the extinguisher is in fact empty and prevents it from being mistakenly put into use.

Take the fire extinguisher outside. Pull the pin out of the side of the extinguisher handle. Point the hose toward the ground and then squeeze the handle to empty the fire extinguisher. Hold the handle until the extinguisher is empty.

Unscrew the entire top valve assembly from the top of the tank. Place the tank aside.

Place the valve in a table vice to hold it in place.

Unscrew the retainer from the inlet port on the bottom of the valve using an adjustable spanner wrench. Remove the retainer and washers, diaphragm, and O-ring below the retainer.

Remove the anti-recoil plug on the side of the valve using an adjustable spanner wrench. Remove the screen behind the anti-recoil plug.

Turn the pressure gauge counterclockwise by hand and remove it.

Turn the fill valve counterclockwise using an adjustable wrench to remove it.

Remove the squib cartridge, which connects to the hose on the top of the fire extinguisher valve, using an adjustable wrench.