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    Code Requirements: Use Strap-Type Brackets On Extinguisher Installations

    By Mark Conroy

    We all know that extinguishers need to be readily available, in a sufficient number, and have adequate capacities for potential fires in buildings. We install them with uniform distribution, along normal paths of travel, and at the entrance and exit doors. But we often forget that they need to be at the right height and installed in strap-type brackets if there is a chance that they can become dislodged.

    Extinguisher Height Rules (NFPA 10)

    1. The bottom of the extinguisher must be at least 4 inches off the floor
    2. Extinguishers up to 40 pounds (18 kg) must be installed so the top is no more than 5 feet off the floor
    3. Extinguishers over 40 pounds (18 kg) must be installed so the top is no more than 31/2 feet off the floor

    One commonly overlooked problem is extinguishers, in locations that are subject to dislodgement, that aren’t installed in strap-type brackets. As an industry, we should correct these problems and retrofit the installations to meet code. Installing extinguishers in strap-type brackets complies with NFPA 10: Fire extinguishers installed in vehicles or under other conditions where they are subject to dislodgement shall be installed in approved strap-type brackets specifically designed for this application.

    An extinguisher mounted on a hanger is usually in a place where a strap-type bracket will fit. Almost every buildinghas a number of extinguishers that should be in these brackets for code compliance. All extinguisher manufacturers have strap-type brackets available. Carry a few along on your next service call and you’ll be surprised at the positive response.

    Most Common Extinguisher Strap-Type Brackets*

    2 1/2 lb 817A 24610AS MB250 466401K 700287W 466401K MB250
    5 lb 818A 429146AS MB5 466400K 700270W 466400K MB5
    10 lb 846A 435793AS 366242K 366242K 700430W 366242K 366242K

    * To know which bracket to use, refer to the extinguisher nameplate label.

    Extinguishers must be in their designated locations and never sitting on the floor. As an experienced technician, you know which extinguishers should be in strap-type brackets. Provide the fixes by installing retrofit brackets and make the installations code compliant. You’ll not only be providing code-compliant installations, but you’ll be improving your bottom line.

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