Fire extinguishers are an important part of the home safety system. It is required by law to instal fire extinguishers in your property to put out the fire in case of emergency.
Although we never know when we will need to use a fire extinguisher. However, we must ensure that it will be in proper working condition whenever needed.
Therefore, you need to inspect the fire extinguishers regularly to keep them readily available for use during exigencies. This article mentions the tips to inspect fire extinguishers at home, keeping NFPA 10 guidelines in mind.
Types of Fire Extinguishers
Different fire extinguishers are planned to put out any combustible fires at home. The fire extinguishers installed at home are type B as they can put out the fires at home. But you can also install different extinguishers to combat other fires. Check the list below to know the types:
- Class A: They are good to put off fire caused by wood, paper and garbage.
- Class B: combat fires from flammable liquids and dry chemicals
- Class C: helpful in putting out fires caused by flammable gases
- Class D: assists in drowsing fires from flammable metals
- Class K: helpful in controlling fires caused by animal fat, cooking oils, etc.
Steps to Inspect Fire Extinguishers at home
Although, fire extinguishers come with instruction manuals that contain relevant information about how to use the extinguishers. The usage may vary depending on different types of extinguishers.
However, a basic fire extinguisher inspection guide remains the same for every type. Follow the steps beneath to ensure the proper functioning of the fire extinguisher at home.
Easy Access Is Essential
It is important to mount the extinguisher near potential fire sources, so you have easy access as and when needed. Some common areas can be:
- Garage (ensure that fire extinguisher has cold temperature resistance)
- Kitchen walls
- Near the HVAC system
- Near fireplaces and Chimneys.
Note that chimney fires can flare without any warning. Therefore, you should have the extinguisher placed right behind it to curb the fire and prevent major damage.
The Pressure Gauge
Every fire extinguisher has a pressure gauge which helps it function well when needed. Thus, you need to inspect the pressure gauge and ensure that it is fully charged. While examining the extinguisher, ensure that the pressure gauge points in the green zone. Hire professionals like Fire Extinguisher Service San Diego for your business.
The green zone indicates that the extinguisher is optimally charged. An overcharged extinguisher may possess an explosion risk. Similarly, the undercharged gauge may not work efficiently.
The Hose and Pin
A fire extinguisher has several components; thus, you need to inspect them to ensure they are all in place. So, while inspecting the fire extinguisher, ensure that the safety pin and the hose are in their place.
If you find any cracks in the hose, you should get it changed. Also, if the pin is not tied to the rope, you might need to refill your canister. The pin is important because you need to pull it out to release the fire retardant from the canister for curbing fire.
Although fire extinguishers are made of heavy metals, they are likely to be damaged by falling. Check the canister for any dents that may lead to leaks. In addition, any rust near the neck of the canister may also be an issue.
Regular inspection of your fire extinguishers at home is a good practice as it allows you to keep a record and ensure that it stays fully functional in case of an emergency. In addition to all the points noted in this article, you must also check for the expiry date on the canister. It is best to change an expired extinguisher for safety purposes.