Maintaining Your Fire Extinguishers

Fire extinguishers must be chosen according to the fuel type because different extinguishing agents suit different fuels. Class A fire extinguishers are suitable for all flames, including general fires. Class B fire extinguishers are used for flammable liquids; while Class C extinguishers are only applicable in emergencies involving electrical fires. The Houston fire department provides training for the use of fire extinguishers, as well as fire safety equipment that can be purchased in local stores.

Maintain your fire extinguishers

It is best to regularly maintain your fire extinguishers, particularly if they’re used in a warehouse or other working environment where they could be left unattended. Regularly scheduled inspections and maintenance can help ensure that your extinguishers are ready to use whenever you need them. Make sure to check that the container holding the extinguisher is tightly closed, the nozzle is clear and airtight, and that there are no foreign objects or trash inside the canister. Houston fire extinguishers will provide you with instructions for proper inspections and maintenance. Besides, the manufacturer of commercial fire extinguishers offers inspections and maintenance services at many fire department facilities.

Your inspection and maintenance procedures will depend on the type of fire extinguishers you have and how often they are used. For example, an oil-based extinguisher must be inspected once per year and its filter cleaned once per year, while a hydro spray-based extinguisher is only required to be inspected every three years. If you use gel, foam, or water-based fire extinguishers, their inspection and maintenance are usually one hour per month. For halogen and bulb-based extinguishers, their inspection and maintenance are usually two hours per month.

For your convenience, you should also have your fire extinguishers mounted in appropriate areas, such as ceiling panels and cabinets. These areas are more convenient for inspections because they are out of the way and unlikely to be knocked over or damaged during regular use. Make sure the mounting location is secure and flat; otherwise, if it shifts, the flames could escape. This is especially important if your fire extinguishers are mounted in ceilings or cabinets that exceed certain limits of support.

Inspected And Serviced

Every year, you should also have your fire extinguishers inspected and serviced. This will ensure that they are in good operating condition. Many manufacturers offer fire extinguishers that require no annual servicing, but many of them encourage you to have the equipment serviced annually by a qualified technician. If you are not sure what the manufacturer recommends, ask your local fire department or call the fire code official. They will help you determine which type of fire extinguishers require annual servicing and which ones don’t.

Finally, make sure you have adequate protection for your fire extinguishers, including fire suppression systems, which are similar to smoke detectors. Often, smoke detectors are not detected until they have reached 100 feet from the fire source, whereupon their sensitivity is significantly reduced. Fire suppression systems are designed to suppress the fire and suppress any smoke that might escape from the affected areas, as well as prevent the spread of the gases in the fire. Smoke detectors and fire extinguishers are designed to work together in providing the most effective protection.

Fredrick R. Siegel

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