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           How To Buy Fire Extinguishers

          Local Company -v- Internet

Extinguisher servicing company

Prices will vary from company to company - obviously the larger ones with sales teams and large offices will have greater overheads and will be more expensive than a small operator working from home! Unless you need nationwide coverage than this may be the only difference between them.

  QUALIFICATIONS

The Technicians BAFE recognised examination certificate, and if over 3 years old the Technicians Refresher Certificate.

   
  INSURANCE

Employers, public liability and inefficacy (failure to perform) - are the level of cover realistic for the risks they pose to your business?

   
  REFERENCES
Similar organisation to yourselves in terms of size and industry sector and follow them up!
   
  ESTIMATE
The nature of extinguisher servicing makes it impossible to accurately quote for without doing a full survey first, this is rarely practicable. Do get itemised costs for service item and parts so that you avoid a nasty surprise later!.
   
Advantages;
   
  Adequate extinguisher cover to protect you from fire and keep you compliant with fire legislation.
   
  Convenience - supply, installation, commissioning and ongoing servicing all taken care of!
   
  A warranty of 5 years (subject to unbroken servicing during the 5 years by the original provider).
   
  Fast response when you need refills.
   
  Extinguisher servicing companies can often provide a wide range of fire protection services as you need them, e.g. fire training, fire alarm servicing, fire risk assessment, etc.
   
Disadvantages;
   
  Perceived higher cost.
   
  Every area seems to have it's own 'rogue trader' using underhand sales and/or poor servicing techniques.


The Internet and Catalogues


On the face of it these channels appear to offer good value for money and when buying a commodity product, but be aware of the pitfalls when buying a fire extinguisher. This requires a high level of service support at the point of sale, during installation and ongoing servicing throughout it's life. As with any other product bought through these channels you are only buying box not a service!

Advantages;
   
Cheaper - if you know what you are doing.
   
Convenience - quick delivery directly to site.
   
Disadvantages;
   
  Likelihood of damage in transit (our suppliers will only ship extinguishers on pallets to reduce the risk of damage). You will have the inconvenience of packing and returning damaged extinguishers at your own cost.
   
  Extinguishers may not come supplied with a suitably completed service label, thus not complying with fire regulations.
   
  The hidden cost of the 'Commissioning Service' by a COMPETENT PERSON as required by BS5306 part 3 when installing the equipment. This will need to be arranged with a local extinguisher servicing company at extra cost.
 
  No survey, so the provider cannot be 100% certain that you have enough extinguishers that are appropriate to the fire risks you are facing.
   
  The warranty is usually only 12 months from date of purchase.
   
  It's expensive and time consuming to return extinguishers to the supplier
(and ensuring they arrive undamaged!) - if you order the wrong equipment!
   
  You need to have the knowledge to be sure that what you are buying complies with British and European standards.
   
  The supplier usually cannot provide future extinguisher maintenance other than putting you in contact with one of their preferred suppliers.
   



 

 
            

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