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Old 09-16-2012, 07:21 PM   #1
maddawg308
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Default cost to refill fire extinguisher?

I have a couple little extinguishers that are small, good size for the shop, the car, the kitchen, etc. They are all discharged, no pressure. With the price of small units at WalMart and other big box stores, I wonder if it's worth having the old ones refilled or just buy a new one. I don't know about new quality, a lot of the new ones in the retail stores are imported stuff. These are older USA made stuff, fairly thick metal and heavier duty. Hate to get rid of them if they are better than a replacement.

So, bottom line, how much does it cost to refill a fire extinguisher?
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Old 09-16-2012, 07:26 PM   #2
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Default Re: cost to refill fire extinguisher?

Great question - I've wondered this myself as I am in the same sort of situation.

I'm betting the answer is...'call your local place and find out'. I need to do just that!

Dave
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Old 09-16-2012, 07:35 PM   #3
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Default Re: cost to refill fire extinguisher?

If they have a plastic valve I would recomend just trash canning them and buy metal topped ones for use from now on.
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Old 09-16-2012, 07:38 PM   #4
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Default Re: cost to refill fire extinguisher?

Here I can say often it is cheaper to replace them with new ones. As when you ask for a refill they often test them and then sometimes fail them. After a few years they often automatically fail them with age so do your homework and if better just replace them.
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Old 09-16-2012, 11:05 PM   #5
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Default Re: cost to refill fire extinguisher?

I have looked into getting small extinguishers refilled. The answer:

don't bother unless the extinguisher is an heirloom (ha) and very

dear to you, personally. They are a lot more expensive to have

serviced, than to shell out for new ones. Stick with the Kidde

brand, they seem to be the most reasonable and available all over.

Uncle Bob
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Old 09-16-2012, 11:47 PM   #6
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Default Re: cost to refill fire extinguisher?

Any extinguisher with a plastic valve can be trashed when it's empty.

If they are old enough, they may need to be hydro tested before they are filled. Check your local Yellow Pages to find somebody in your area that services them. Make a call and inquire with them about what you want or need, that is your best answer.
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Old 09-16-2012, 11:54 PM   #7
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Default Re: cost to refill fire extinguisher?

If they aren't the plastic valve style, it's MUCH cheaper to have them recharged. I do all the ones at my companies location annually and it normally runs around $15/ea for the recharge and $10 extra if they are in need of a hydrotest.
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Old 09-17-2012, 11:23 AM   #8
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Default Re: cost to refill fire extinguisher?

We have ours inspected and it's always cheaper to buy new. Kinda ridiculous really.
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Old 09-17-2012, 02:34 PM   #9
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Default Re: cost to refill fire extinguisher?

Welcome to the world of liability.
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Old 09-17-2012, 03:17 PM   #10
maddawg308
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Default Re: cost to refill fire extinguisher?

I looked up a buddy of mine who used to be in the fire suppression industry (testing cylinders, checking places for compliance, etc.), and he said hands down, get a new one. I'm not going to argue with ya'll, I'll just spring for new ones.
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Old 09-17-2012, 03:42 PM   #11
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Default Re: cost to refill fire extinguisher?

Most commercial businesses need there extingushers currently tagged to pass a fire inspection. These are the only companies that normally inspect and fill extinguishers. The fire department does not care whether they are brand new or not, as long as the are tagged. Most of the times, these companies really do not change there prices, and they are plenty busy keeping yearly customers up to date.

If you do not need the inspection tags, small ones I would just replace. Sometimes you can buy bigger units from these companies as cheap as a new smaller one would cost.
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Old 09-17-2012, 05:39 PM   #12
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Default Re: cost to refill fire extinguisher?

I know someone is going to shun me for this but...

If they are just old that have leaked out their pressure over time, you *can* just jab your air-compressor nozzle in the end, hold down the handle and re-fill it... There's youtube videos, but it's not rocket science.

However, if they leaked out air, more than likely the valve has degraded and they won't hold air for very long once your fill them back up (as was my case for one)... In the end spend the money and just buy a new one.

However if you get the ones at HD, open the box first before buying... I literally had to go through a DOZEN extinguishers just to get TWO good ones. Some already lost pressure, some were missing the safety clip, some had the dial in odd directions... KIDDIE has really gone to hell in a handbasket... Of course they are now made in mexico so what can a person expect?
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Old 09-17-2012, 05:49 PM   #13
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Default Re: cost to refill fire extinguisher?

Quote:
Originally Posted by EOC_Jason View Post
I know someone is going to shun me for this but...

If they are just old that have leaked out their pressure over time, you *can* just jab your air-compressor nozzle in the end, hold down the handle and re-fill it... There's youtube videos, but it's not rocket science.

However, if they leaked out air, more than likely the valve has degraded and they won't hold air for very long once your fill them back up (as was my case for one)... In the end spend the money and just buy a new one.

However if you get the ones at HD, open the box first before buying... I literally had to go through a DOZEN extinguishers just to get TWO good ones. Some already lost pressure, some were missing the safety clip, some had the dial in odd directions... KIDDIE has really gone to hell in a handbasket... Of course they are now made in mexico so what can a person expect?
That is ok if it is a water stored pressure extinguisher. You can not do that with CO2 extinguishers.
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Old 09-17-2012, 07:06 PM   #14
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Default Re: cost to refill fire extinguisher?

Quote:
Originally Posted by HOTFR8 View Post
That is ok if it is a water stored pressure extinguisher. You can not do that with CO2 extinguishers.
A paintball field or store would give you access to all of the CO2 you need for a couple bucks, but they probably wouldn't want to take on the liability unless they knew you.
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Old 09-17-2012, 07:09 PM   #15
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Default Re: cost to refill fire extinguisher?

Quote:
Originally Posted by D.J. View Post
If they have a plastic valve I would recomend just trash canning them and buy metal topped ones for use from now on.
This. New ones are cheap compared to the anguish you'd suffer if you did have a fire.
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Old 09-17-2012, 07:22 PM   #16
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Default Re: cost to refill fire extinguisher?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jkeyser14 View Post
A paintball field or store would give you access to all of the CO2 you need for a couple bucks, but they probably wouldn't want to take on the liability unless they knew you.
Here in Australia you have to go to a registered service centre for a Fire Extinguisher. Dry Chem, CO2 etc. all have to be serviced by a registered firm. Insurance has put a stop to doing that at home. Water stored are easily recharged at home but if it failed I would hate to be near it as they are meant to be recharged in a cage.
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Old 09-17-2012, 07:42 PM   #17
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Default Re: cost to refill fire extinguisher?

Most units in the states are the dry-chem type and I think the pressure is around 150-185PSI... The high pressure CO2 I guess are a little more special application, as would water....
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Old 09-17-2012, 08:19 PM   #18
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Default Re: cost to refill fire extinguisher?

I have an old Soda Acid extinguisher but would alway got for the Dry Chem in the workshop first.


This must be an old chart as Halon has been banned in most places as it is dangerous to the ozone.
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Old 09-17-2012, 09:17 PM   #19
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Default Re: cost to refill fire extinguisher?

I had couple old all metal USA made extinguishers, I took them to out local FD. They tested and filled them for 30 a piece.
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Old 09-17-2012, 10:10 PM   #20
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Default Re: cost to refill fire extinguisher?

I purchased a quality fire extinguisher from my local fire supply center. I just had it serviced for the first time, its about 7 years old.

It does cost more, but I still feel it is very cheap insurance. And if I am going to buy one, I would rather spend a little more for piece of mind knowing it will perform when I need it.
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