Does a Fire Extinguisher Expire?

Question: How long is a 2006 extinguisher whose gauge is "still in the green" acceptable for a passing inspection?

Answer: Current guidance from the USCG Office of Boating Safety directs that the following items should be included in the annual maintenance of non-rechargeable portable extinguishers:

1. Verify that 12 years has not lapsed from the manufacture date marked on the extinguisher (date stamped on the bottom of the cylinder).
2. Check that the pressure gauge or pressure indicator is in the operable range.
3. Verify there is no physical damage to the extinguisher or discharge hose (if provided).
4. Check for missing or broken safety seals or tamper indicators.
5. Examine the extinguisher for obvious signs of corrosion, leakage or clogged discharge nozzle.

If any deficiencies are noted, the non-rechargeable extinguisher should be replaced.

Click here for a PDF file titled Portable Fire Extinguisher Inspection And Maintenance FAQ. (PDF | requires Adobe Acrobat Reader)

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