Fire Extinguisher Inspection Checklist for Free | Lumiform (2023)

What Is a Fire Extinguisher Inspection?


A fire extinguishers maintenance is carried out every month to ensure that the fire extinguishers are in good condition. Fire extinguisher testing and monitoring fall under inspections carried out by external specialists or a company's own safety officers or janitors as part of the overall fire safety strategy.


The task of a saftey officer is to carry out regular checks of the fire extinguishers and to keep all records up to date so that the building and tenants are safe. It is vital that a safety officer knows how to carry out fire extinguisher maintenance efficiently. Only in this way will he be aware of the most common problems that occur during maintenance and know how to react accordingly.


In addition, employers are required by law to check fire extinguishers for proper operation at regular intervals. This monthly fire inspection should be taken very seriously, as incidents can quickly pose a serious risk to employees.



This guide gives a brief overview of the following points:


1. Fire extinguisher inspection and regulations


2. Types of fire extinguishers


3. What's checked in a monthly inspection


4. How to do an annual inspection


5. Who can do a fire extinguisher inspection


6. Recharge Vs. Replace


7. A free mobile application to streamline fire extinguisher maintenance

(Video) How to Inspect Fire Extinguisher| Checklist | How often should be inspected | Monthly| #SafetyWorld


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Fire Extinguisher Inspection and Regulation Requirements


This little piece of equipment that often sits in corners gathering dust has the potential to save thousands of dollars worth of damages and prevent the irreplaceable loss of life caused by unexpected fires in the workplace or home.


People forget about maintaining their fire safety equipment, expecting that they’ll never need them, but they better be working properly if they do.


For a building or company site to pass a fire inspection, it must adhere to the following six fire extinguisher regulations:

  1. Your building has the approved portable fire extinguisher type equipped to put out the anticipated workplace fire.
  2. The fire extinguisher must not contain carbon tetrachloride or chlorobromomethane extinguishing agents as they are hazardous to human health.
  3. The extinguisher must be visible and easily accessible to all employees
  4. The fire extinguisher is fully charged and in working condition
  5. Portable extinguishers for class A and D fires should be distributed at no more than 75 foot intervals
  6. Portable extinguishers for class B fires should be distributed at no more than 50 foot intervals

OSHA has regulations on the number of portable fire extinguishers that should be distributed throughout the building. This includes the interval in which they are placed and the type of extinguisher (type A, B, C, D, and K which are designed to put out different classes of fires).


There is no exact height requirement or distance the fire extinguisher has to be mounted from the ground. Rather, OSHA states that employees should be able to readily access the fire extinguisher in cases of emergencies without endangering themselves.



Types of Fire Extinguishers


An "A-B-C" fire extinguisher can be used on all fires. Other types of extinguishers work only on a certain class of fire.


1. A-B-C extinguishers: As mentioned, this is the most multi-use type. To be more precise, it can be utilized for fires cause by ordinary combustible materials, such as wood, cloth, paper; flammable liquids, such as oil, gasoline, kerosene; and energized electrical circuits (e.g., electronic motors, electrical wiring, etc.)


2. "B-C" dry chemical: Used for fires by flammable liquids and energized electrical circuits

(Video) How to Inspect a Fire Extinguisher


3. D extinguishers: For fires made by reactive metals


4. K: K stands for Kitchen. This is the extinguisher for fires brought by oils and fats


5. Carbon dioxide: Same use as for “B-C” dry chemical



How to Do a Monthly Inspection of a Fire Extinguisher?


First and foremost, fire extinguisher inspections must be performed at least once a monthin order to remain compliant with OSHA fire codes and state regulations.


As a rule of thumb, fire extinguishers need to be checked in three ways over a period of several years, including monthly visual inspections, yearly maintenance inspections, and internal maintenance inspections every five, six, or twelve years.


Although it’s not an OSHA requirement that the monthly inspection is logged, executing an inspection is not optional. Performing regular checks is vital to the well-being and safety of everyone in the building.


These checks take only a few seconds per extinguisher, but the impact could be potentially life-saving in case of an actual fire. Be mindful that inspecting a NFPA 10 portable fire extinguishers once a month is just a guideline. If the fire extinguisher resides in a high traffic area where the extinguisher is more prone to damage, then it should be inspected more frequently.


What you should check for during a monthly inspection:


  1. The condition and location of the extinguisher
    It should be ensured that the tool is easy to find, reach, and in its designated spot. Everyone should be informed and provided a fire safety map displaying where all fire safety equipment can be found.
  2. The condition of the locking pin and the tamper seal
    An inspection should check for the presence of physical damages such as leakages and broken seals. Make sure the pin is in place and hasn’t been tampered with.
  3. The condition of the pressure gauge
    Confirm that the pressure gauge or indicator is in the operable range. This means the indicator needle is pointing in the green section. Be careful, though, since looking at this gauge from anywhere other than eye level can lead to a misreading. Also, make sure that the extinguisher is still full.
  4. Visibility of the extinguisher and its operating instructions
    The extinguisher should be in a visible, easy-to-reach place away from high trafficked areas that expose the canister to unexpected damages. The words must be legible and face outward.
  5. Professional service date
    Fire extinguishers should be regularly inspected. At least once a year. If the extinguisher’s pressure gauge is no longer in the green or it exhibits any other signs of wear and tear, the canister should be refilled or replaced.
  6. Tag
    Check the condition and the date listed on the back of the tag. A certified inspector should replace and verify the tag once a year. The monthly checks should also be documented on this tag and signed by the inspector.
  7. The fire extinguisher is securely mounted in place
    An extinguisher placed on the floor is more susceptible to damage and the likelihood of not working on the off chance that it’s needed. It’s also more of a concern that the extinguisher will be moved to an undesignated location which could have catastrophic implications in the case of an emergency.


How to Do an Annual Fire Extinguisher Inspection


There are a few key differences between an annual and monthly fire extinguisher inspection, namely that an annual maintenance inspection must be carried out by a professional fire protection companythat is certified in servicing portable fire extinguishers.


Considering the importance of the role fire extinguishers play, it’s not surprising that an annual inspection must be conducted by a certified professional.

(Video) Fire Extinguisher Inspection Checklist & Tag Solution (Patent Protected): Explainer Video


An annual inspection of all portable fire extinguishers within the company's site is a requirement for the legal operation of a business. This will include a thorough examination of the extinguisher's internal and external conditions to make sure they are functioning properly. Inspectors will look for any of the following criteria:

  1. Any damage to the unit
  2. The pull pin is in working condition
  3. Reseal the pull pin
  4. Ensure the threads aren’t stripped
  5. Check the date
  6. Check no powder was released
  7. Invert the extinguisher
  8. Look for tears in the hose
  9. Remove last year’s date tag
  10. Certify this year’s date tag

Many of the items on this checklist resemble the items on the monthly inspection. However, these inspectors are certified to perform maintenance and double-check any damaged components that might have been missed by an untrained eye.



Who Can Inspect Fire Extinguishers?


By law, an employer is responsible for the safety of his workers and has to make sure that the monthly fire extinguisher test is performed and recorded, but they don’t have to perform the inspections themselves.


Still, who is allowed to perform these inspections? Does the inspector have to hold a certification? Or can any employee conduct their own inspections? The following passages will answer these questions.


1. Who Can Perform a Monthly Fire Extinguisher Inspection:


Luckily, it doesn’t take a special certification to be able to safely make sure a fire extinguisher is functioning properly. Since these checks are fairly straightforward, anyone should be able to perform them.


An employee or designated safety officer can do this task, or the employer can hire an outside company to complete the monthly inspection.


It doesn’t matter who does the Inspection, but they still need to be performed monthly. This can present more of a logistical issue for those who inhabit larger buildings than those who don’t. Lumiform allows employers to automatically assign an employee to the monthly task of making sure the pressure gauge arrow still points to the green.


2. Who Can Perfrom an Annual Fire Extinguisher Inspection:


Both fortunately and unfortunately, these inspections must be conducted by a certified professional.


It’s not the most appealing prospect to have to schedule an appointment with a professional fire inspection company, but at least you’ll be rest assured that all the fire safety equipment is up to industry and regulation standards and will work in the case of an unexpected fire.



When Should A Fire Extinguisher be Replaced Vs. Recharged?


Unfortunately, fire extinguishers cannot typically be repaired. That means if any part of the extinguisher breaks or is damaged—including the handle, hose, gauge, pin, or canister—the entire unit needs to be replaced.

(Video) Fire Extinguisher Inspection Monthly & Annually|Fire Inspection Checklist|Best Fire Safety Institute


If any of these components are missing or damaged, they will fail the inspection and need to be replaced. The average price of a portable fire extinguisher is between $150 and $200, depending on the type of extinguisher and what class of fire it can fight. It’s recommended a unit be replaced every twelve years regardless of its condition.


However, one exception does exist and that is a canister can be refilled after it’s been discharged if all the other components are still in good working order.


A fire extinguisher should be recharged at the ten-year mark to meet all safety standards—even if it has never been used. The same goes if the extinguisher was never fully emptied, for instance, in the case of a small fire. It still needs to be recharged. Failure to do so could result in non-compliance with the fire code and the chance the device won’t work properly in the case of an actual fire.


Fire Extinguisher Inspection Checklist for Free | Lumiform (2)


A Mobile Solution for Fire Extinguisher Checklists


Safety officers can inspect up to 100 fire extinguishers in a building per month, not to mention the full maintenance report for each individual extinguisher. With all this paperwork, the likelihood of human error increases, which means that the risk of fire from a single malfunctioning extinguisher also increases.


Lumiform helps safety officers improve fire safety in the workplace by making fire extinguisher maintenance more efficient. The mobile application for regular fire extinguisher maintenance enables them to:


  • Using the super intuitive mobile app, you and your team can efficiently perform paperless maintenance via your mobile devices
  • The flexible checklist builder from Lumiform helps you to convert any individual fire extinguisher checklist into a digital checklist without much effort.
  • Easy attachment of photo documents to the report after fire extinguisher maintenance
  • Forward problems identified during the inspection by assigning corrective actions
  • Create complete visual reports and release them immediately
  • Save and document data immediately
  • Templates for fire extinguisher maintenance and previous reports are always at hand
  • In addition, we offer more than 12,000 ready-made templates to help companies get started digitally.

It can be helpful to switch from paper to a digital means of record keeping. The paper tags that are usually found attached to the extinguisher’s handle are susceptible to water damage and tearing that could result in the loss of documentation. Keeping an electronic file ensures the information won’t be lost to outside factors.


It’s a good idea to keep a digital track record of who performed the inspection, which extinguisher was checked (noting the serial number), and if the inspection was performed at the designated time.


Learn more about how to best use Lumiform's fire inspection software. We've prepared templates for your fire extinguisher checklists that you can customize and use immediately with the app.


Try Lumiform for free

(Video) Checking, Inspecting, and Maintaining Fire Extinguishers

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FAQs

What is fire extinguisher checklist? ›

Check these details during a monthly fire extinguisher inspection. Confirm the extinguisher is visible, unobstructed, and in its designated location. Verify the locking pin is intact and the tamper seal is unbroken. Examine the extinguisher for obvious physical damage, corrosion, leakage, or clogged nozzle.

What are the 4 steps in using a fire extinguisher pass? ›

Discharge the extinguisher within its effective range using the P.A.S.S. technique (pull, aim, squeeze, sweep). Back away from an extinguished fire in case it flames up again.

What are the 5 steps in using a fire extinguisher? ›

How to operate a fire extinguisher
  1. Pull (Pin) Pull pin at the top of the extinguisher, breaking the seal. ...
  2. Aim. Approach the fire standing at a safe distance. ...
  3. Squeeze. Squeeze the handles together to discharge the extinguishing agent inside. ...
  4. Sweep.

What is a fire safety checklist? ›

1) Are flammable materials correctly stored? 2) Is all electrical equipment correctly wired and earthed? 3) Is all wiring & equipment in good condition? 4) Are electric heaters clear of flammable material?

How do you inspect a fire extinguisher OSHA? ›

Look for obvious signs of physical damage, such as corrosion, leakage, or dents. Check the pressure gauge to make sure the indicator is in the operating range. Make sure the pull-pin is not missing and the pull pin seal is intact. Verify the date of the last professional inspection.

What are the main inspection points on a fire extinguisher? ›

Fire Extinguisher Inspections

Look for any signs of physical damage, such as leaks, dents, or corrosion. Check the pressure gauge to ensure that the indicator is in the operating range. Check to make sure the pull-pin seal is still intact. Verify the date of the last professional inspection.

What are the 3 elements needed to start a fire? ›

Oxygen, heat, and fuel are frequently referred to as the "fire triangle." Add in the fourth element, the chemical reaction, and you actually have a fire "tetrahedron." The important thing to remember is: take any of these four things away, and you will not have a fire or the fire will be extinguished.

What is Step 1 of the pass technique? ›

It's easy to remember how to use a fire extinguisher if you can remember the acronym PASS, which stands for Pull, Aim, Squeeze, and Sweep. Pull the pin. This will allow you to discharge the extinguisher.

What is ABC type fire extinguisher? ›

An extinguisher with an ABC rating is suitable for use with fires involving ordinary combustibles, flammable liquids and energized electrical equipment. An extinguisher that is rated for use with multiple hazards should include a symbol for each hazard type.

What is the golden rule of fire? ›

When considering whether to tackle a small fire yourself if you discover one, always bear in mind the golden rule of fire safety; If in doubt, get out, stay out and call the Fire Brigade immediately.

What are the 4 types of fire extinguishers? ›

There are four classes of fire extinguishers – A, B, C and D – and each class can put out a different type of fire.

What is the first thing you need to do before you use a fire extinguisher? ›

Before grabbing the fire extinguisher, make sure that everyone is ok and headed to the set meeting point. Also look around to ensure the structural safety of the building and to locate exit points to ensure you can get out safely.

What are the 10 fire safety rules? ›

Synopsis
  • Get some smoke detectors. ...
  • Put a smoke detector on every level of your home. ...
  • Close bedroom doors. ...
  • Set up an exit plan. ...
  • Purchase a fire ladder. ...
  • Exit first, then call emergency number. ...
  • Never re-enter a burning home. ...
  • Never leave a burning candle in a room by itself.
29 Oct 2021

What is fire risk assessment checklist? ›

What Is a Fire Risk Assessment Checklist? A fire risk assessment is conducted by a business's responsible person(s) to identify hazards and risks. If you manage a commercial premises, you are required by law to carry out fire risk assessments and to keep a written record of the findings.

How many steps are in a fire risk assessment checklist? ›

5-step checklist to help people responsible for business premises to complete a fire safety risk assessment.

What is the OSHA standard for fire extinguishers? ›

A fire extinguisher, rated not less than 2A, shall be provided for each 3,000 square feet of the protected building area, or major fraction thereof. Travel distance from any point of the protected area to the nearest fire extinguisher shall not exceed 100 feet.

What is the OSHA rule for fire extinguisher placement? ›

To prevent fire extinguishers from being moved or damaged, they should be mounted on brackets or in wall cabinets with their carrying handles placed 3-1/2 to 5 feet above the floor, depending on the type of extinguisher. Those with gross weights of no more than 40 pounds (lbs.)

How often do you need to inspect fire extinguishers OSHA? ›

Inspection, maintenance and testing

Visually inspect portable extinguishers or hoses monthly. [29 CFR 1910.157(e)(2)] Perform an annual maintenance check on portable fire extinguishers. Stored pressure extinguishers do not require an internal examination.

How should I inspect an extinguisher? ›

Visibility of fire extinguishers – check they are unobstructed and have clean, legible operating instructions facing outwards. Make sure the pressure dial on the fire extinguisher is pointing to the green, and lift the extinguisher to check it feels full.

What are the 6 steps to property check a fire extinguisher? ›

6 Steps to Inspecting Your Fire Extinguisher
  1. Step 1: Ensure You Have Easy Access. ...
  2. Step 2: Check the Fire Extinguisher Inspection Tag. ...
  3. Step 3: Gauge the Pressure. ...
  4. Step 4: Confirm the Hose and Pin Are in Place. ...
  5. Step 5: Look for Physical Damage. ...
  6. Step 6: Update the Inspection Tag.

How often should fire extinguishers be inspected? ›

OSHA requires all employers and owners of buildings to conduct a visual inspection of all fire extinguishers at their disposal at least once per month.

What is the minimum temperature of fire? ›

The temperature of fire can range from around 400 degrees Fahrenheit up to 9000 degrees Fahrenheit (200 to 4980 degrees Celsius).

What are the 4 main principles of fire safety? ›

Each of the four principles — Life Safety, Notification, Extinguish, and Relocate/Evacuate — is a crucial step for any hospital fire safety action plan.

What is the full form of fire? ›

The full form of FIRE is Find Inform Restrict Extinguish in safety. it is also called Find Inform Restrict Extinguish. This is a word related to fire safety.

Do you remove zip tie from fire extinguisher? ›

It is fairly easy to break when deliberately pulling the pin out, what you would be doing in an emergency. As a used extinguisher must be recharged or replaced, even if only partially used, it is best to leave the safety cord holding the pin in.

What color is used for fire exit signage? ›

While the colour green is related to safety, it means "safe" and "go," making it clear to the public that they should remain calm and follow the signs. This means that in case of a fire emergency, people will run to the green sign and avoid running to the red one.

Which gas is used in fire extinguisher? ›

Carbon dioxide (CO2) is stored in extinguishers in the liquid phase. It vaporizes when released thereby smothering a fire by excluding the air (oxygen) needed for combustion.

How much pressure should be in a fire extinguisher? ›

CO2 gas is held in the fire extinguisher under pressure, normally around 55 bars at room temperature. By comparison, pressure cookers operate at 1 bar of pressure, modern car tyres are usually inflated to a maximum of 2.5 bars, whilst airliner tyres are inflated at up to 14 bars.

What is the number one rule in a fire? ›

When it comes to fire safety, the number one rule is that everyone goes home. Ensuring this starts the moment you drive up on scene with a good scene size up. Assessing the structure, looking for hazards, and calculating the best means of fire attack are some of the first steps to ensuring scene and firefighter safety.

Why is fire extinguisher painted red? ›

Firstly, red is the colour associated with both danger and fire and so there is an obvious association with fire extinguishers. Secondly, red is the colour most easy to see, especially in a darker environment, such as a smoke-filled room. The only exception to the 'red' rule, is chrome extinguishers.

What size fire is too big? ›

Make sure the fire is small.

The flames should never be taller than you and should not cover an area that is bigger than 60 square feet. 60 square feet is about the size of a king size bed (42.15 square feet), so don't try to tackle a fire that is much bigger than that.

What is the difference between ABC and CO2 fire extinguisher? ›

The most common types are Classes A, B and C, and the classic red fire extinguisher (ABC dry chemical) that you've probably seen in most commercial and retail businesses can handle all three types. CO2 extinguishers work primarily for Class B fires, but can also fight Class C fires.

What are the 3 methods of extinguishing a fire? ›

All fires can be extinguished by cooling, smothering, starving or by interrupting the combustion process to extinguish the fire.
...
When water is applied, it undergoes changes as it absorbs heat from the fire:
  • Its temperature will rise.
  • It may evaporate (boil)
  • It may react chemically with the burning material.

What action should be taken immediately after a fire has been extinguished? ›

7) The four simple steps for operating a fire extinguisher can be remembered with the word PASS. Pull, Activate, Squeeze, Sweep. 8) After the fire has been extinguished, it is important to watch the site for re-ignition.

What should you not do with a fire extinguisher? ›

8 WAYS YOU SHOULD NOT USE A FIRE EXTINGUISHER
  • Ignoring the instructions written of the fire extinguisher. ...
  • Using the wrong type of extinguisher for the wrong class of fire. ...
  • Rushing into a fire unprepared: ...
  • Trying to put out a big fire using several extinguishers one at a time.
6 Sept 2017

What is the distance between fire extinguishers? ›

Almost all the fire extinguishers have a range of more than 2 meters so from a safe distance operate the fire extinguisher until the fire has been completely extinguished.

How do you maintain a fire extinguisher? ›

How to Properly Maintain Your Fire Extinguisher
  1. Visually inspect your fire extinguishers at least once every month. ...
  2. Hire a professional to inspect and maintain your fire extinguishers once every year. ...
  3. Conduct a six-year inspection on your fire extinguishers.
6 Jul 2017

What are the types of fire extinguishers? ›

The six main fire extinguisher types are water, foam, CO2, powder, water mist and wet chemical. Each of the different types of fire extinguisher is suitable for different fire classes. It is important that you purchase the right fire extinguisher for your needs.

How do you inspect a fire extinguisher monthly? ›

6 Steps to Inspecting Your Fire Extinguisher
  1. Step 1: Ensure You Have Easy Access. ...
  2. Step 2: Check the Fire Extinguisher Inspection Tag. ...
  3. Step 3: Gauge the Pressure. ...
  4. Step 4: Confirm the Hose and Pin Are in Place. ...
  5. Step 5: Look for Physical Damage. ...
  6. Step 6: Update the Inspection Tag.

How often should fire extinguishers be inspected? ›

OSHA requires all employers and owners of buildings to conduct a visual inspection of all fire extinguishers at their disposal at least once per month.

How often should a fire extinguisher be serviced? ›

How often should I be servicing my fire extinguishers?
Type of extinguisherBasic serviceExtended service
Water-based12-monthly [every year]Every 5 years
Powder12-monthly [every year]Every 5 years
Powder-primary sealed12-monthly [every year]Every 10 years
Clean agent12-monthly [every year]-
2 more rows

When should fire extinguishers be calibrated? ›

After several years of use, even with annual inspections, you will need to pressure and discharge test all your fire extinguishers. You need to do these tests every 5 years for water, powder and foam extinguishers, and every 10 years for CO2.

What is ABC in fire extinguisher? ›

"ABC" indicating that they are designed to extinguish class A, B, and C fires. "BC" indicating that they are designed to extinguish class B and C fires.

What is the colour code for fire extinguishers? ›

Blue – Dry Powder. Black – Carbon Dioxide (CO2) Cream – Foam. Red – Water (Spray and Mist)

What are the 3 elements of fire? ›

Oxygen, heat, and fuel are frequently referred to as the "fire triangle." Add in the fourth element, the chemical reaction, and you actually have a fire "tetrahedron." The important thing to remember is: take any of these four things away, and you will not have a fire or the fire will be extinguished.

What is the first thing you need to do before you use a fire extinguisher? ›

Before grabbing the fire extinguisher, make sure that everyone is ok and headed to the set meeting point. Also look around to ensure the structural safety of the building and to locate exit points to ensure you can get out safely.

Which gas is in fire extinguisher? ›

Carbon dioxide (CO2) is stored in extinguishers in the liquid phase. It vaporizes when released thereby smothering a fire by excluding the air (oxygen) needed for combustion.

What is the OSHA standard for fire extinguishers? ›

A fire extinguisher, rated not less than 2A, shall be provided for each 3,000 square feet of the protected building area, or major fraction thereof. Travel distance from any point of the protected area to the nearest fire extinguisher shall not exceed 100 feet.

Does OSHA require monthly fire extinguisher inspections? ›

An employer must: Inspect, maintain, and test all portable fire extinguishers in the workplace. [29 CFR 1910.157(e)(1)] Visually inspect portable extinguishers or hoses monthly.

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