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PDFWAC 296-800-30020

Inspect and test all portable fire extinguishers.

(1) You must perform inspections:
Make sure that portable fire extinguishers or hose systems (used instead of fire extinguishers) are visually inspected monthly.
(2) You must perform maintenance checks:
(a) Make sure that all portable fire extinguishers are subjected to an annual maintenance check.
(b) Keep records of all annual maintenance checks and make available to the department upon request.
(i) For 1 year after the last maintenance check; or
(ii) For the life of the shell, whichever is less.
(c) Make sure that equal protection is provided when portable fire extinguishers are removed from service for maintenance and recharging
Exemption: Most stored pressure extinguishers do not require an internal examination. Examples of those that do require an internal examination are those containing a loaded stream agent.
(3) You must perform hydrostatic testing:
• Dry chemical extinguishers that have nonrefillable disposable containers are exempt from this requirement.
• Manually pressurized pumptanks are exempt from this requirement.
(4) You must make sure that portable extinguishers are hydrostatically tested:
(a) At the intervals listed in Table 1, of this section.
(b) Whenever they show evidence of corrosion or mechanical injury.
(5) You must not perform hydrostatic testing on fire extinguishers if:
(a) The unit has been repaired by soldering, welding, brazing, or use of patching compounds.
(b) The cylinder or shell threads are damaged.
(c) Corrosion has caused pitting, including corrosion under removable name plate assemblies.
(d) The extinguisher has been burned in a fire.
(e) Calcium chloride extinguishing agents have been used in a stainless steel shell.
Specific rules regarding conducting hydrostatic tests are covered in WAC 296-24-59212.
(6) You must maintain records showing that hydrostatic testing has been performed. Provide the following evidence to the department upon request:
(a) Date of test.
(b) Test pressure used.
(c) The serial number, or other identifier of the fire extinguisher that was tested.
(d) Person or agency performing the test.
(7) You must keep records until:
(a) The extinguisher is retested; or
(b) The extinguisher is taken out of service, whichever comes first.
(8) You must empty and maintain stored-pressure dry chemical extinguishers requiring a 12-year hydrostatic test, every six years:
When recharging or hydrostatic testing is performed, the 6-year requirement begins from that date
Hydrostatic Test Table
Type of Extinguisher
Test Interval (Years)
Stored pressure water and/or antifreeze
Wetting agent
Foam (stainless steel shell)
Aqueous film forming form (AFFF)
Loaded stream
Dry chemical with stainless steel
Carbon dioxide
Dry chemical, stored pressure, with mild steel, brazed brass or aluminum shells
Halon 1211
Halon 1301
Dry powder, cartridge or cylinder operated, with mild steel shell
Note: Due to a manufacturer's recall, stored pressure water extinguishers with fiberglass shell (pre-1976) are prohibited from hydrostatic testing.
[Statutory Authority: RCW 49.17.010, 49.17.040, 49.17.050, and 49.17.060. WSR 18-22-116, § 296-800-30020, filed 11/6/18, effective 12/7/18. Statutory Authority: RCW 49.17.010, [49.17].040, and [49.17].050. WSR 01-23-060, § 296-800-30020, filed 11/20/01, effective 12/1/01; WSR 01-11-038, § 296-800-30020, filed 5/9/01, effective 9/1/01.]
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