The manufacturing date of an extinguisher is important when it comes to refilling (powder, foam & water extinguishers) or refurbishing (CO2 extinguishers), also called extended extinguisher service. The extended service of foam, water and powder extinguishers is due either 5 years from initial commissioning or 6 years after manufacture, whatever comes first. The refurbishment of CO2 extinguishers is due after 10 years from the cylinder manufacture. In the case of the CO2 extinguishers it is irrelevant when the extinguisher was commissioned or even when it was assembled by the manufacturer. The only date that is relevant in this specific case is the cylinder manufacturing date. This is because of the high pressure in CO2 extinguishers, which makes the cylinders fall into regulation for high pressure cylinders.
To find out when an extinguisher was commissioned, simply check on the maintenance label of the extinguisher.
To find out the age of an extinguisher you need to look for dates stamped on the cylinder body, printed on the extinguisher label or printed on the extinguisher itself.
Sometimes the date stamp is hidden under the plastic ring around the neck of an extinguisher or under the plastic boot of the extinguisher. If paint has obscured the date stamp the paint needs to be rubbed off with emery cloth.
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Reviewed: 29/10/2020 (doc:28 V1.0). Our articles are reviewed regularly. However, any changes made to standards or legislation following the review date will not have been considered. Please note that we provide abridged, easy-to-understand guidance. To make detailed decisions about your fire safety provisions, you might require further advice or need to consult the full standards and legislation.