What Is the Correct Height to Hang a Fire Extinguisher?

OSHA and the NFPA

OSHA and the Fire Protection Codes of the National Fire Prevention Association spell out where, how, and how high fire extinguishers should be placed. For the homeowner, the choices are often a matter of aesthetics.

Size Matters

The size of the fire extinguisher has a bearing on how high a fire extinguisher should be placed. Smaller extinguishers can be mounted higher, since they are light and can be easily lifted from a high mounting and lowered for use. Larger, heavier extinguishers should be mounted closer to the ground to make them more manageable.

NFPA 10, Standard 6.1.3.8.1: Extinguishers Under 40 Pounds

A fire extinguisher weighing less than 40 pounds, like the extinguishers found in your home, should be hung so that the top is not more than five feet above the ground, but no lower than four inches above the floor, according to the National Fire Protection Association's Standard for portable fire extinguishers, NFPA-10.

NFPA 10, Standard 6.1.3.8.2: Extinguishers Over 40 Pounds

Larger extinguishers, those weighing more than 40 pounds or more, are not found in a home setting very often, except in a workshop. To make them more accessible--by not making the user have to lift them down from too high a mounting bracket--the NFPA Standard dictates that the top of these heavyweights can be no more than 3-1/2 feet from the floor.

NFPA 10, Standard 6.1.3.8.3: Minimum Height Above Floor

No fire extinguisher should ever be mounted less than four inches above the floor.