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    Extinguishers: Protecting Them With Cabinets And Covers

    By Mark Conroy

    The requirement for protecting extinguishers from damage is in NFPA 10, Standard for Portable Fire Extinguishers. Understanding the different protection methods, and which ones are preferred for different applications, will keep the extinguishers safe and help ensure their reliability in the event of a fire. Here’s what you need to know for extinguisher protection and fire readiness.

    NFPA 10, paragraph requires extinguishers that are subject to physical damage from impact, vibration, or environmental issues to be protected. Two of the most common methods for compliance are installing extinguishers in cabinets or providing covers for the extinguishers.

    Extinguisher Cabinets
    It is common for businesses with finished areas, like offices, to specify attractive cabinets to protect extinguishers. This means installing recessed or semi-recessed cabinets. Flush mount recessed cabinets look nice, but semi-recessed are most often chosen to fit in typical 2x4 stud construction.

    Cabinets for Finished Areas

    Type Installation Trim
    Semi-recessed Installs in almost any wall 1 12" - 3"
    Recessed Requires deep wall recess Flush to wall

    Extinguisher cabinets are also needed for protection of extinguishers in outdoor environments, like self-service gas stations and industrial areas. These cabinets are most often economical surface mount cabinets. Damage can occur in these high-traffic areas. The economy of these cabinets makes replacement of the entire cabinet or replacement fronts affordable. Check the condition frequently.

    Surface Mount Cabinets

    Material Cabinet Max Extinguisher Height Colors Front Striker
    Plastic Mark Series 16 34" , 20" , or 24" Red or White Pull Cover Not Needed
    Plastic FireTech 16 34" , 20 58" , or 25 34" Red or White Break Front Sold Separate
    Metal FireTech 19 34" , 25 34" , or 29 34" White Break Front Sold Separate

    Extinguisher Covers
    Extinguisher covers also provide protection in compliance with NFPA 10. Covers are often used for protection of extinguishers in outdoor applications, including vehicles like trash trucks and fuel trucks.

    Portable Fire Extinguisher Covers

    P/N Description H x W
    FEC4E Extra Small Extinguisher Cover / Elastic-Back, Pull Bottom Tab 18 12" x 6"
    FEC1 Small Extinguisher Cover / Hook-and-Loop Closure 20" x 11 12"
    FEC2 Medium Extinguisher Cover / Hook-and-Loop Closure 25" x 16 12"
    FEC3 Large Extinguisher Cover / Hook-and-Loop Closure 31" x 16 12"

    Make sure all extinguishers are mounted per NFPA. Code compliant extinguisher installations will help ensure that the extinguishers you install remain safe and ready for use in the event of a fire emergency.

    Mark Conroy is an engineer in our Boston, MA office and a member of the NFPA Technical Committee on Portable Fire Extinguishers. Copyright © 2017, Brooks Equipment® Company, all rights reserved.

    Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in the above Tech Series article are the author’s only and provide limited information. Although the information is believed to be reliable, Brooks Equipment® Company, LLC expressly disclaims any warranty with respect to the information and any liability for errors or omissions. The user of this article or the product(s) is responsible for verifying the information’s accuracy from all available sources, including the product manufacturer. The authority having jurisdiction should be contacted for code interpretations.

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