Why Regular Fire Extinguisher Maintenance Is So Important (And Who to Hire for Fire Extinguisher Testing in Sunshine Coast)

Most fire extinguisher manufacturers say that their extinguishers are supposed to last for five to 15 years. However, even if you buy a premium quality extinguisher with a 15-year guarantee, it is important to have it serviced on a regular basis. Under Australian standards, building owners must have their fire extinguishers tested every six months. More than that, testing is necessary because it ensures that, in the event of a fire, your extinguisher works well enough to extinguish the blaze.

At Checkmate Safety, we provide regular fire extinguisher testing in Sunshine Coast. If you are looking for someone to help you comply with Australian regulations, or if you are concerned about the quality and performance of one of your extinguishers, just give us a call, and we will be there to test, maintain, repair or replace the extinguisher in question.

How Fire Extinguishers Work (And How They Fail)

How the fire extinguishers in your building work will depend in part on what type of extinguishers you have on the premises. Typically, fire extinguishers fall into one of three categories: water, carbon dioxide or dry chemical. Water extinguishers are exactly what they sound like: tanks filled with water to spray on fire like a giant water gun. Carbon dioxide extinguishers use a mixture of liquid and pressurised carbon dioxide gas to smother a fire and deprive it of oxygen. Dry chemical extinguishers work in essentially the same way, except that they stifle the fire with a layer of dry chemical powder or foam rather than with liquid and gas. From these three general categories, fire extinguishers are broken down further depending on the types of fires they can be used to extinguish.

As you can see, all fire extinguishers use a mix of pressure and some flame-smothering substance. The pressure does the job of making sure that the substance can be sprayed out of the extinguisher in a propulsive fashion. In other words, the pressure makes sure that you don’t have to get too close to a fire to put it out with the extinguisher. The substance—be it a powder, liquid or gas—helps deprive the fire of heat and oxygen, two factors that are essential to a fire’s spread and growth.

Why Regular Fire Extinguisher Testing in Sunshine Coast Is So Essential

When you hire someone to come in and perform fire extinguisher maintenance in Sunshine Coast, you are hiring that person or company to make sure that the pressure of your extinguisher and the materials within are ready to kill a blaze. When the pressure of your extinguisher drops—often because of a faulty seal on the canister itself—the extinguisher cannot propel the substance out of the canister and onto the fire. An expert in fire extinguisher testing in Sunshine Coast will be able to spot signs of diminishing pressure.

A fire extinguisher testing and maintenance team in Sunshine Coast will also be able to spot issues with the substances in the canister itself. Especially with dry chemical extinguishers, the chemicals inside can set and harden over time. This process creates a compacted mass of chemicals at the bottom of the canister. Even if the extinguisher has a sufficient level of pressure, it will not be able to break up the mass of chemicals so that they can be expelled onto the fire.

At Checkmate Safety, we know how to fix these issues—as well as other problems that you might have with your fire extinguisher. If the problem can’t be repaired, we can provide a replacement extinguisher. To learn more about our services, give us a call on 1300 00 2468.