The fire extinguishers in public and private commercial buildings need maintenance, or they may not be ready when you need them. Over time, they can begin to lose pressure, and recharging may be necessary. A fire extinguisher recharging service needs to do the job to ensure it is done right and that the extinguisher is safe to use.
Every fire extinguisher you have, including dry chemical, CO2, and water extinguishers, have an inspection standard associated with them. Most extinguishers need inspecting once a year, but there are cases where they need to be looked at more often, and many large companies will have a safety director or someone else that will check the units for a full charge, as often as monthly.
If the unit has discharged over time, the extinguisher will be pulled and sent out for a full inspection and fire extinguisher recharging. Industrial facilities need to be extremely proactive about ensuring the extinguishers work because they are statistically more likely to have a fire than an office building will. But all commercial properties need to be on top of this task because a working extinguisher could be the difference between some smoke in your structure or a major fire.
Fire Extinguisher Services
Many services offer fire extinguisher recharging and inspection that you can use to keep everything working. You can work with these services to tailor your services and inspections to meet your needs, and they will often have suggestions for you about the timing of the inspection based on your industry, the number of extinguishers you have, and how old they are.
Facilities that have a lot of extinguishers may benefit from rotating through sections of the building monthly or doing half the building every six months. Once an extinguisher is used on a fire, it needs recharging, but if you have some extra extinguishers on hand, you can wait until the services come out to send the unit in for a fire extinguisher recharge on the unit you used.
Recharging and Inspection
Every fire extinguisher discharged on fire or extinguishers that lose pressure over time needs to have a complete inspection to check the cylinder and mechanism. A fire extinguisher recharge requires the service to refill the unit with whatever medium it uses, and then the cylinder needs recharging. If the cylinder is damaged in any way, it can not be pressurized and must be destroyed.
Any part of the mechanism that is not working needs to be replaced before the extinguisher can be put back in service so that there is no question that it will work and is safe to use if required.