How long does a fire extinguisher last?
Most fire extinguishers don't have expiration dates since many city fire codes require businesses to do yearly inspections and servicing. Each fire extinguisher type has a different shelf life depending on the manufacturer and whether it is a rechargeable or disposable extinguisher. Easiest way to identify the difference is that a rechargeable extinguisher has a metal head with a charge/recharge gauge, whereas a disposable extinguisher has a plastic head with a full/empty gauge.
Fire extinguishers should last at least 10 to 12 years from the manufacturing date if they’re properly maintained. To best tell how old the extinguisher is, the manufacture date can be found on the label or on the bottom of the extinguisher. If the extinguisher is over the 15 year mark, we’d recommend replacing it with a new one.
When To Replace Your Fire Extinguisher?
Besides physical damages, when the chemicals in a fire extinguisher lose their charge or the pressure falls, the extinguisher is deemed inoperable. Disposable fire extinguishers should be replaced every 12 years. Rechargeable fire extinguishers should be discarded if they have any of the following issues:
Usually this should be handled and recommended by your local fire extinguisher inspection company during your yearly inspection. Learn more about yearly inspections and how to check your fire extinguisher here.
If you think your fire extinguisher is expired, here's the guide on how to dispose your fire extinguisher.
Call (888) 627-9394 if you have any questions or want more information regarding your local fire code requirements and our experts can help you out.