Blake Fire and Security Systems

How Many Fire Extinguishers Do I Need To Comply With UK Law?

Date: 21 September 2023

Whether you've just moved into a new business premises, or you're checking that your safety measures are up to scratch - you may find yourself asking "How many Fire Extinguishers do I need to comply with the law?"

Below, you can find out:

  • How to establish the types of extinguisher you need
  • How professionals work out how many you need
  • How to ensure your school or business is compliant with the law


First things first...

Before you can identify how many Extinguishers are required, you need to know what types of Fire Extinguishers are best suited to your premises.

For example, a restaurant will have different Extinguishers to a paper factory or an IT repair shop.

If you didn't already know, there are 8 main Fire Extinguisher types:

  • Water
  • Water Spray
  • Water Mist
  • Powder
  • Dry Powder (Special Powders)
  • Foam
  • Carbon Dioxide
  • Wet Chemical

Each one has a unique way of fighting fires due to the ingredients or type of jet spray that distributes the contents inside.

If the wrong Extinguisher is used, you could literally end up adding fuel to the fire! That's why it's so critical to understand the different types - we have a blog post about the types of extinguishers here.

It's complicated - and too easy to get it wrong! Hit the button below to ask one of our experts and make sure you get it right.

Balancing budget and fire safety for business owners

How many Fire Extinguishers do I need?

Now, for the main event!

On the web, you can find a general rule of thumb:

1 x 13A Fire Extinguisher are needed per 200 square meters.

BUT, like most generic fire safety info from the web, there's a problem with this blanket statement.

The above rule of thumb doesn't consider the risks in your building - it is calculating the number of extinguishers on premises size alone.

1 Extinguisher per 200 square meters might be fine for some, but not for others.

The requirements for a small, one storey off-licence will differ from an industrial warehouse with over 20 machines... which will differ from a 4 storey school with 5 food technology classrooms... and so on.

For compliance assurance, professional help is needed...

If you were looking for a quick answer, you might be disappointed to learn that the number of Fire Extinguishers you require depends on a multitude of factors - many of which can only be identified by professionals.

Therefore, you need a professional company, like Blake's, to make this judgment for you after your Fire Risk Assessment.

Fire Safety professionals undergo extensive training and achieve accreditations like NSI Gold to prove competency in installing and maintaining Fire Extinguishers in accordance with legislation.

If you go by the generalised information on the web and try to fit them yourself, you could end up with a non-compliant fire safety system that results in unlimited fines, or even a jail sentence! Yes, you read that right.

Our Fire Extinguisher experts are available to answer your questions and book a free premises review. Click the button below and leave your details so we can get back to you ASAP!

Balancing budget and fire safety for business owners

Understanding the requirements to comply with the law

On a tight budget? If so, that might not have been the answer you were hoping for.

The last thing you want is to have to splash out on loads of new fire safety equipment and a professional company to fix it...

BUT, if you want to:

  • fulfill your duty of care for your staff and visitors;
  • avoid enormous fines; and
  • eliminate the risk of a prison sentence

you need to safeguard your business in a way that meets British Standards and complies with legislation.

Read our recommended minimum requirements to balance your budget and fire safety!

Click the image below to download your FREE guide now!

Balancing budget and fire safety for business owners

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This blog post is provided for general information only. It is not intended to amount to advice on which you should rely. Call Blake's on 01702 447800 to speak to one of our professionals for specialist advice before taking, or refraining from, any action on the basis of the content on our site.

Although we make reasonable efforts to update the information on our site, we make no representations, warranties or guarantees, whether express or implied, that the content on our site is accurate, complete or up to date.

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