A rough guide to fire extinguisher servicing


The fire extinguisher market has changed substantially […]

The fire extinguisher market has changed substantially in recent years, with products becoming cheaper and the launch of ‘service free’ extinguishers.

Is it time to rethink your arrangements? What are the requirements and how much flexibility do you have?
Changing needs

The best practice recommendations on extinguisher servicing are described in BS5306-3:2009. (The BSi shop website confirms that it’s currently under review, which can only be a good thing given developments in the sector since 2009).

There’s also information within government guidance. While these documents are not legislation as such, should it all go wrong, they would be relied upon in court as evidence of expected practice to comply with the law.

They cost a bit more than standard extinguishers (a 6 litre AFFF including the installation is £130 plus VAT) but because of the savings they should make good financial sense.

However, before deciding whether to take this route you must be sure that you have the resources to carry out the annual check – it’s not difficult and can be carried out using the magnet provided to check the pressure gauges, a visual inspection and quick wipe. Instructions are given by the manufacturer.

One catch is that there are presently no carbon dioxide extinguishers in the range. This could mean that you have a small number of traditional extinguishers alongside your P50s, thus still requiring a service visit by a qualified technician, and losing at least some of the financial savings.