Recharging a fire extinguisher is an important and often overlooked part of the process. This service should be done inside commercial buildings that have larger units that use dry chemical substances so they can stay in compliance with safety codes. Recharge services are usually inexpensive, but prices vary depending on how many fire extinguishers need to be serviced, the type of fire extinguishers, as well as the professional that takes on the job.
How Much Does it Cost to Recharge a Fire Extinguisher?
The average cost of recharging a fire extinguisher is usually anywhere from $15 to $30. This will ultimately depend on the extinguisher type and its size. Most of the time, a recharge will be cheaper than buying a brand new fire extinguisher.
The fire station in Fridley, Minnesota, for example, offers a convenient way for residents to drop their fire extinguishers off and have them recharged. The fees vary depending on the size of the extinguisher belonging to that household but can range anywhere from $9 -$19 per recharge. On the other hand, one company we found during our research, charged customers about $15 for each charge with an additional fee of $2-$3 per pound for chemicals used during this process.
|Type of Job||Average Price|
|Dry Chemical: 11 to 20 pounds||$50 to $60|
|Dry Chemical: 6 to 10 pounds||$35 to $42|
|Dry Chemical: 4 to 5 pounds||$25 to $31|
|Dry Chemical: 0 to 3 pounds||$20 to $27|
|CO2: 16 to 20 pounds||$35 to $45|
|CO2: 11 to 15 pounds||$33 to $40|
|CO2: 6 to 10 pounds||$30 to $35|
|CO2: 0 to 5 pounds||$25 to $30|
Recharging a fire extinguisher
During recharge, the extinguisher is refilled with a new agent and this process should only take around 10 to 20 minutes.
Recharging services are usually dealt with by local fire stations or via private companies that have partnerships with manufacturers of these devices; most times recharging will be handled by professionals who specialize in such work.
Remember that single-use fire extinguishers aren’t made to be recharged. To find out if your fire extinguisher can be recharged, look for a metal gauge on the top of it. If it’s a plastic one, then you should throw the whole extinguisher away and purchase a different one.
Any additional expenses related to the cost of recharging?
Old and outdated extinguishers cannot be recharged, which means that you will have to replace them if they are damaged beyond repair. A new one will usually only cost around $15 to $50. If you also want to have the extinguisher tested as you get it recharged, then you should expect an additional expense of around $5 to $15, depending on the unit.
Regular maintenance is essential to ensure that it will be effective in the event of an emergency. A good rule of thumb for these visits is every six or eight years, with fire extinguisher inspections costing anywhere from $30-$50 for each visit.
Any way of reducing the fire extinguisher cost?
When looking for a fire extinguisher, it may be easier to invest in one that is already charged rather than having the old canister refilled. There are some risks involved with performing such tasks anyway. On Stack Exchange, for example, someone who had experience repairing these types of devices said they would not recommend restoring an older unit because cracks could form around the plastic/nylon heads, leading to potential leaks.
Some extinguishers come with valves that will enable them to get refilled. You can always contact your local fire department to ask any question regarding fire extinguisher recharging, to make sure you’re on top of all the steps that will be required.
What are the types or classes of fire extinguishers?
It’s always a good idea to have a portable fire extinguisher in your house, although it is also important to know the fire extinguisher that fits your needs in the best possible way. Currently, there are five types of fire extinguishers, based on the guidelines provided by NFPA:
- Class K – these are extinguishers that are used mostly for fires in cooking appliances, having good usage for combustible cooking media like fats, animal oils, and vegetables.
- Class D – these are pretty much used for fires that involve potassium, lithium sodium, zirconium, titanium, magnesium, and other combustible metals.
- Class C – great for extinguishing burning energized electrical equipment.
- Class B – use them for industrial fires in flammable gases, alcohols, lacquers, solvents, oil-based paints, oils, tars, petroleum greases combustible liquids, but also flammable liquids.
- Class A – these can be used for more ordinary combustible materials. This includes many plastics, as well as rubber, paper, cloth, and wood.
Do fire extinguishers have an expiration date?
Fire extinguishers don’t have an actual expiration date, according to specialists. Even so, there are still signs you need to consider, that will tell you that the device won’t work properly:
- Failed Hydrostatic test.
- The fire extinguisher exhibits rust and corrosion.
- It has physical damage that could prevent it from working properly.
Where can you refill a fire extinguisher?
Calling your local fire department and asking will be the easiest way of finding out where you can recharge your fire extinguisher. There are quite a few private fire extinguishing companies that offer services of refilling or recharging fire extinguishers. Your device should also have information about the fire safety company that created it, which should also provide refilling services most of the time.