The Ontario Fire Code has specific requirements for the installation of portable fire extinguishers in most buildings, including vacant buildings, with the exception of single family homes.
The number will vary depending on a number of factors, including the size of the building, number of floors, the use of the building and other factors.
The letters indicate the type of fire for which the extinguisher is designed to be used.
An 'A' extinguisher can be used on normal combustibles such as paper, wood and cardboard, etc.
A 'B' extinguisher is for flammable liquids, such as grease or gasoline.
A 'C' stands for energized electrical.
Many extinguishers will have multiple ratings such as ABC or BC.
The numbers designate the size of a fire that the extinguisher can put out. Examples include a 2A10BC or a 40BC extinguisher.
Read the instruction label found on the front of portable fire extinguishers in your building or business to become familiar with their operation and ratings.
The Ontario Fire Code requires that all portable fire extinguishers must be maintained in accordance with NFPA (National Fire Protection Agency) 10. This means that the extinguisher is to be visually checked monthly for any sign of tampering and damage.
How to Visually Inspect Your Extinguisher
- Remove the extinguisher from its bracket and examine it closely.
- Ensure that the extinguisher's gauge is pointing to the 'OK' area, that the protective pin is in place and that there has been no obstructions placed in the hose or nozzle that will affect operation.
- Once a year you are required to have the extinguisher serviced by a qualified firm that has tools and materials available to service the unit properly.
The service preformed will vary depending on the type and age of the extinguisher. Often, the extinguisher may be serviced on-site. Ensure that the service technician performs a check similar to what you do monthly, as well as additional checks, including weighing the extinguisher. A new service tag should be installed after the servicing that shows the name of the company, the technician's signature, and the date of service.
No. Members of fire service do not perform any inspection or servicing of fire extinguishers. During inspections of properties, fire extinguishers will be checked to ensure that they are being maintained in accordance with the requirements of the Ontario Fire Code. If it is found that they are not, and inspection report will be provided you will be provided, indicating this and requiring that the violation be corrected immediately. You will then be required to obtain a firm to do this work for you.
PLEASE NOTE: North Grenville Fire Services staff conducts inspections in full uniform only.
Perform a web search for local fire extinguishers service companies. Or look in the local phone directory, under fire extinguishers, which should list a number of local firms that both sell and service portable fire extinguishers.
The tag that is applied by the servicing company will list the date that they preformed their last inspection. When you perform your monthly check, ensure that it has not been more than 12 months since the date of their last visit. Most service companies will arrange to place you on a regular call back schedule where they will return automatically at the required frequency.
Contact the Fire Prevention Officer at 613-258-9569 ext 205. There is no charge for this service.