Managing fire risk for your tenants is an important part of your landlord responsibilities. With this in mind, you should have all your properties fire risk assessed every year. In addition, it’s also important that you give all extinguishers a monthly visual check to ensure that they are in good condition.
Fire extinguisher safety check guide
All your extinguishers should have securely fitted wall brackets or floor stands. There should also be clearly visible signage next to the extinguishers giving details on their operation in the event of a fire. Insecure fittings should be repaired and damaged or missing signage replaced.
If a fire extinguisher is fitted with a pressure gauge, the needle should be resting in the green zone. A red zone indicator means that the pressure inside the extinguisher is too low and, therefore, needs servicing or replacing immediately.
Your fire extinguishers should be fitted with safety seals in the form of metal pins and secured with a tamper-proof seal. Make sure that these seals are undamaged and intact, and arrange for replacement extinguishers if necessary.
In order for the appliance to work efficiently, it’s important that the gauge, nozzle and valve are all clean and free from dust and grease. If necessary, gently clean the extinguisher using a clean, damp cloth and consider using fire extinguisher covers in particularly dirty environments, such as garages.
The fire extinguisher’s cylinder should be free from dents, rust spotting or signs of leakage. Damaged fire extinguishers are potentially highly explosive and should be removed and replaced immediately, ideally by a professional appliance services company which is trained in safe removal practices.
All the labelling on your fire extinguishers should be clear to read. If the labelling has become too dirty or faded to be legible, you’ll need to ask your appliance services company for a replacement label.
Over time, the powder in powder extinguishers can settle into a solid cake, meaning that the extinguisher won’t work properly in the event of an emergency. In the case of small appliances, you can check this by holding the extinguisher upside down and listening for the falling powder. If the powder is caked, shake the extinguisher gently to disturb it. Large, heavy extinguishers should be checked by a professional.
At Contrast Surveys, we carry out risk assessments to manage the fire risk in commercial and residential buildings, so that you don’t have to. Contact us today to find out more.