LIDL fire extinguishers, serviceable or not?

J

JoeB

Guest
Hi

I have recently been in contact with a fire extinguisher service company. I was also going to buy some extinguishers from them. But then I noticed that LIDL were selling 6KG powder extinguishers, for less than half the price... 27 Euro, rather than 60 Euro.

So I bought several from LIDL.

Now my fire extinguisher service company claims that nobody in Ireland will service a LIDL extinguisher. The reason they give isn't convincing.. something to do with IS 291, which is a Irish Standard for extinguisher maintainence.

But the manufacturers standard is EN3, which LIDL comply with, and also PED 23,, for pressure vessels, again LIDL comply. The same marks appear on both the LIDL extingusihers, and existing ones I already have... and no additional marks appear on the non-LIDL ones.

My point is that the extinguisher service companies can't tell the difference between a LIDL extinguisher, and another one, as the marks are the same on both.. yet they refuse to service the LIDL ones.. (apparently, according to one service company, who do refuse, and who are prepared to speak for all companies on this issue)


Has anyone come across this?


Where can I download the Irish Standards? I can't find them on Google. Does the European standard, EN3, specify that extinguishers must be serviceable?


Cheers
 

Towger

Registered User
Messages
2,133
Reading between the lines, they are just in a huff you did buy their €60 extinguishers. You could try contacting your local fire office and get their view on the subject.

REVISED IRISH STANDARD SPECIFICATION
RE: I.S. 291:2002, PORTABLE FIRE EXTINGUISHERS
NSAI in exercise of the power conferred by section 16(5) of the
National Standards Authority of Ireland Act, 1996 (No. 28 of
1996) and with the consent of the Minister for Enterprise, Trade
and Employment, has revoked the Standard Specification,
The use, siting, inspection and maintenance of portable fire
extinguishers, Declaration 1986 (I.S. 291:1986)
And has declared the following specification to be a Standard
Specification:
I.S. 291 : 2002, The use, siting, inspection and maintenance of
portable fire extinguishers
Copies of this Irish Standard may be purchased by contacting:
National Standards Authority of Ireland,
Standard Sales Office,
Glasnevin,
Dublin 9.
 
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J

JoeB

Guest
I made an error.. the 6KG powder extinguishers were only 48, not 60... 60 was for a 2KG CO2 extinguisher, and it's 53 for a 6 liter foam... there was no info on VAT, and whether it was included or not. It might not have been, as they were quoting to a company.

But the LIDL ones at 27 for 6KG powder, including VAT, is still much cheaper than the others at 48, VAT unknown.

I agree that it seems the companies are upset at LIDL cutting prices, and so refuse to service them. But that seems like a cartel if all companies have the same policy, which is why I posted in Consumer Issues.

I would have hoped that with competation, I will be able to find a service agent.. as I say, the marks are the same on all extinguishers, EN3, and PED23. The IS291 relates to servicing in Ireland and so why would it appear on any extinguisher?
 

Latrade

Registered User
Messages
578
Yup it sounds like a huff thrown. You won't be able to access any standard unless you're a member of NSAI. If you want a copy of the standard I think it's €80. There isn't even a short version, a guide, an explanation to give you the general gist.

However, IIRC, if the extinguishers are manufactured to EN 3, then there is nothing in the IS that gives additional provisions on extinguishers. They couldn't. So in effect if it is the right extinguisher for that environment and risk and it is manufactured to the EN standard, there is no reason why they shouldn't be able to service it.

Without access to the standards (you can't even get the european one without some cash) I can't give a definitive answer. I'd play hardball and ask them which specific part prohibits it. But as a caveat, I don't know if there are different classes of extinguishers (not the A type etc) as in industrial and domestic. It may well be that there is and the Lidl ones are only certified for domestic use.

I do know that there used to be extinguishers that are disposable, however, I'm sure they're redundant now.

The only specific objections to servicing it could be (dependent on what the standards say):

1. It is disposable and not rechargeable
2. It is for domestic use only
3. It isn't the right extinguisher for that risk environment

You'd have to double check those first. But ask for a specific reason why not and which part of the standard. Note that very few companies are servicing only and most/all sell extinguishers too. It's this latter point that could be influencing this decision.
 
J

JoeB

Guest
Thanks Latrade, for the detailed answer., and Towger as well of course.

LIDL extinguisher
http://www.lidl.ie/IE/home.nsf/pages/c.o.20100719.p.ABC_Powder_Fire_Extinguisher_6kg

To answer Latrade..
1.. They are definitely serviceable and re-chargeable... it mentions this on the extinguisher itself... i.e saying, 'recharge after complete or partial use' and 'only use genuine parts when recharging or servicing'

2. yep, possibly,... but I've never seen or heard of this, there are no marks etc, no limitations mentioned etc... so very unlikely overall.

3. Well, an extinguisher should be serviceable, away from it's intended position.. in other words, it's location isn't relevant to servicing.. (but I get your point, a company may be remiss if they say nothing about an extinguisher being totally unsuitable iin it's position).
The LIDL extinguisher is dry powder, suitable for A, B and C fires... virtually everything.. except burning oil or fat, metal, or for use in airplanes... and maybe some other tiny niche areas.



It's too much hassle to ask about why the one company can't service them, I'm pretty clear that they're just upset with LIDL. I have emailed them saying that I'm concerned that their company won't service any of my extinguishers, as they all carry the same marks, whether LIDL or not. I've asked them how they tell the difference.. maybe they'll reply but I doubt it.


If I want a service I'll ring a company and say that I have extinguishers from several sources, all carry the EN3 mark, and the PED mark, and are serviceable... will the company carry out the service? I'll ask if there are any requirements other than the EN3 mark, the PED mark, and that there's no visible damage to the extinguisher.. i.e that it appears in good working order. I reckon they'll easily say yes, no problem, we'll service them.


edited to add...
I suppose the consumer issue is that I had an expectation that these extinguishers could be serviced... if they can't be would I be due a refund? Overall though I think they can be serviced, regardless of what that one company say...
 

NHG

Registered User
Messages
1,100
The company who take care of our fire extinguishers at work not longer service/refill the old fire extinguishers they just replace with a new one for the refill cost.

Im sure it cheaper than removing the old extinguisher and bringing it back to the workshop and bringing it back out to the customer again.
 

Latrade

Registered User
Messages
578
edited to add...
I suppose the consumer issue is that I had an expectation that these extinguishers could be serviced... if they can't be would I be due a refund? Overall though I think they can be serviced, regardless of what that one company say...

For me compliance with EN 3 would indicate they are servicable, so it's an issue with the companies who are refusing to service. My other points were "top of head" and I doubt there are such issue as you get the smaller extinguishers that are more of a "domestic usage".

One possible additional caveat is that ANAF who manufacture the extinguishers are only suppliers to the automotive and marine industires. Unfortunately without access to the standards it's impossible to know whether there is any difference in the extinguishers for these industries and norma industrial useage.
 
J

JoeB

Guest
Yes, after a full or partial discharge.

Also periodocially (spelling?).. every year or so, to maintain the pressure.

There are two parts I suppose... the propellant, which sprays out the 'medium'.. the medium puts out the fire, it's foam, powder, CO2 etc. The propellant is usually a gas... so the propellant is recharged or replaced every year, like a soda stream cartridge.

The 'medium' should be replaced every five years or so.

They also do discharge tests with a smaller number, or every five years or so, this means actually firing off the extinguisher... so then the medium and the propellant would need to be replaced.

After many years they should be binned I suppose, but if maintained they should last for a long time.


NHG... your company replaces them???.. do they supply brand new ones?, or just re-serviced second hand ones? There's no way a new one can be cheaper than sevicing... servicing is just like refeshing a soda stream cartridge.

My company quoted 50 (Vat unknown) to service up to 15 entinguishers!
 

Hillsalt

Registered User
Messages
553
I bought 2 Fire Extinguishers in IKEA for approx €27 each last week, I don't have the spec for you to compare.
 
M

mercman

Guest
Why not contact LIDL head office and ask them have they got any arrangements with a company to recharge them. Also if you have others bought elsewhere why not contact the manufacturers to seek if their agents will recharge them ?
 
J

JoeB

Guest
I had written a reply, then the website behaved very strangely and it dissapeared. First time that's ever happened.. it went to review the thread or something...


Anyway the company now say that they will service them, but it's a little unclear... it's a unwritten rule, they don't want LIDL destroying the fire trade. Presumabely they're not happy with IKEA either.
 

Latrade

Registered User
Messages
578
Anyway the company now say that they will service them, but it's a little unclear... it's a unwritten rule, they don't want LIDL destroying the fire trade. Presumabely they're not happy with IKEA either.

Bascially, they don't want competition. Sounds familiar.
 

MRpicante

Registered User
Messages
2
It is my understanding that providers find it cheaper to replace the extinguishers rather than refill. Refills cost about 10-15 euro but then there is a charge for pick up, labour and drop off, which throws the price up to what it would cost for a new one.
Typically Ikea or Liddle have enough buying power that they can distort the cost and hence push the little guy out, but that's no excuse for lies
 
F

flowerman

Guest
6kg powder fire extinguishers were being sold off for 10 euro last week in some of the Aldi stores.
Even at full price of 24 euro they were cheaper than Lidl.
I picked up 2 of them for a tenner each in Aldi.
1 for the kitchen/dining area downstairs and the 2nd is mounted on the wall on the landing upstairs.
And yes they are servicable too from a company in county dublin.A full refill costs 20 euro if and when needed.

I also use 2kg CO2 fire extinguishers for my large aquariam and my fish stock,a complete refill every 6 months costs me 15-20 euro depending on the actual person I deal with and what humor they are in.But Im not bothered about the price,as long as my aquariam and fish-stock are happy and content.
 
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