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Home > Certification

Certification

We believe that certification raises the level of professionalism in our industry and can be an invaluable marketing tool. Wouldn't your customers like to know they are being serviced by certified individuals who have demonstrated their knowledge in a measurable way? We think so.

In 2003, NAFED introduced the industry's premier certification programs for technicians servicing portable fire extinguishers, pre-engineered kitchen extinguishing systems, and industrial pre-engineered systems. In 2009, the portable and pre-engineered exams were merged into a joint program with the ICC (International Code Council). The ICC now administers these exams. NAFED has also developed a program for certifying technicians in engineered systems.

If you are interested in certification and would like to know about the process, please refer to the following FAQs for answers to commonly posed questions. If you have a question that is not answered below, feel free to call NAFED headquarters at 312-461-9600.

In addition to finding quick answers below, those taking the Portable, Pre-Engineered Kitchen, and Pre-Engineered Industrial exams should also download the ICC/NAFED Exam Information Packet for more detailed information on taking the exam.

Certification FAQs
Which certifications are offered?
Technicians can be certified to service:
  • Portable Fire Extinguishers
  • Pre-Engineered Kitchen Fire Extinguishing Systems
  • Pre-Engineered Industrial Fire Extinguishing Systems
  • Engineered Fire Suppression Systems
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Where can I take the certification exam?
Exams are offered at proctored test centers throughout North America. These testing centers provide a secure environment that ensures a professional and consistent testing experience.
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How do I schedule an exam?
  • To schedule a Portable, Pre-Engineered Kitchen, or Pre-Engineered Industrial Exam call the ICC's testing vendor Pearson VUE at 1-800-275-8301. Be prepared to provide: exam title, exam ID, full name, address, social security number, home and work phone numbers, selected exam date and location, and payment information.
    » Certified Portable Fire Extinguisher: FE
    » Pre-Engineered Kitchen Fire Extinguishing System: FK
    » Pre-Engineered Industrial Fire Extinguishing System: FN
  • To schedule a NAFED Engineered Exam, fill out and return the Engineered Exam application to the NAFED office.
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How is the test administered?
Registration must be made in advance. No on-site registration is allowed. Applicants will receive a confirmation when registered. With the confirmation, the applicant will receive the location, date, and time of their scheduled exam(s). Government-issued photo identification must also be presented to the exam proctor.

All exams are open-book. Please refer to the ICC/NAFED Exam Information Packet for more information regarding what items you can bring with you to the ICC/NAFED exams.

ICC/NAFED Certified Portable Fire Extinguisher Technician Exam
100 questions, multiple choice, with a 2-hour limit.

ICC/NAFED Pre-Engineered Kitchen Fire Extinguishing Systems Technician Exam
80 questions, multiple choice, with a 2-hour limit.

ICC/NAFED Pre-Engineered Industrial Fire Extinguishing System Technician Exam
80 questions, multiple choice, with a 2-hour limit.

NAFED Engineered Fire Suppression Systems Technician Exam
150 questions, multiple choice and true/false, with a 2 1/2-hour limit.
Please see the Engineered Exam application for materials allowed during the test.

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Which references do I need to study for the exam?

ICC/NAFED Certified Portable Fire Extinguisher Technician Exam (FE) ICC/NAFED Pre-Engineered Kitchen Fire Extinguishing System Technician Exam (FK) ICC/NAFED Pre-Engineered Industrial Fire Extinguishing System Technician Exam (FN) NAFED Engineered Fire Suppression Systems Technician Exam

Several of these NFPA standards can also be ordered from NAFED.


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What topics are covered on the exam?

ICC/NAFED Certified Portable Fire Extinguisher Technician Exam
  1. Inspection: 4%
    1. Verify the location, accessibility, and visual condition of the extinguisher.
  2. Annual Maintenance: 20%
    1. Identify the extinguisher model and the specific manual.
    2. Perform external visual examination of the extinguisher to determine manufacture date and date of previous services, physical and mechanical condition to determine if hydrostatic testing, recharging, or internal maintenance is necessary or if it is eligible for continued service.
    3. Verify model integrity and proper components of the extinguisher in accordance.
    4. Determine fill and charge of the extinguisher.
    5. Repair or replace parts of extinguisher.
  3. 6-year and Internal Maintenance: 10%
    1. Identify the extinguisher model and the specific manual.
    2. Determine the specific agent recovery requirements.
    3. Implement internal visual examination following the manual.
  4. Hydrostatic Testing: 10%
    1. Identify which components are required to have a hydrostatic test and type of test to be performed and necessary equipment.
    2. Perform a visual inspection and the required test.
    3. Perform post-test procedures on equipment after the test.
  5. Recharging: 20%
    1. Identify which components are required to be recharged, with necessary equipment and materials.
    2. Recharge according to the manufacturer's instructions.
  6. Selection, Placement, and Installation: 20%
    1. Determine the occupancy and/or hazards requiring protection, special concerns, and environmental conditions.
    2. Select the equipment suitable for the application.
    3. Determine placement requirements for the equipment selected.
    4. Install the equipment in accordance with codes, standards, and manufacturer’s recommendations.
  7. Safety: 4%
    1. Follow good safety practices.
  8. Recordkeeping and Documentation: 12%
    1. Perform recordkeeping and documentation of actions, including but not exclusively, labels, collars, tags, and papers.

ICC/NAFED Pre-Engineered Kitchen Fire Extinguishing Systems Technician Exam
  1. Occupancies and Hazards Identification: 12%
    1. Identify the occupancy of the kitchen's location in a new, altered, or remodeled structure.
    2. Identify the individual hazards of the location in a new, altered, or remodeled structure (proximity of hoods to each other).
    3. Identify the hazards to be protected by the system being installed.
  2. General Component Requirements: 20%
    1. Determine what components are required.
    2. Determine where components are allowed to be located.
    3. Determine whether components are appropriate for the expected function.
  3. Hoods and Exhaust Systems: 10%
    1. Identify the type and technology of hood and exhaust system.
    2. Determine deficiencies in the hood and exhaust system that will affect the performance of the extinguishing system.
  4. Administration and Records: 6%
    1. Identify the authorities having jurisdiction for the installation and submit the prepared layout to them.
    2. Prepare the layout of the system to the systems listing.
    3. Document the layout as installed.
    4. Provide certifications and manuals to end users, as well as prepare reports and affix seals and tags.
  5. Installations: 24%
    1. Remediate existing conditions.
    2. Identify local geographic conditions and structural conditions of the installation site, i.e., earthquake zones, building structure.
    3. Determine installation material required to install the system.
    4. Identify, coordinate, and install the system.
    5. Conduct the acceptance test of the system.
  6. Inspection: 4%
    1. Perform monthly inspection of the system.
  7. Maintenance and Recharge: 24%
    1. Perform semi-annual maintenance on the system.
    2. Perform recharge of the system.
    3. Perform hydrostatic test or six-year maintenance of the system.
    4. Determine if circumstances have occurred that require an upgrade or alteration.

ICC/NAFED Pre-Engineered Industrial Fire Extinguishing System Technician Exam
  1. Occupancies and Hazards Identification: 18%
    1. Identify the occupancy of the industrial system location in a new, altered, or remodeled structure or vehicle.
    2. Identify the individual hazards of the location within a new, altered, or remodeled structure or vehicle.
    3. Identify the hazards to be protected by the system being installed.
  2. General Component Requirements: 20%
    1. Determine what components are required.
    2. Determine where components are allowed to be located.
    3. Determine that the components are appropriate for the expected function.
  3. Hoods, Ventilation, and Exhaust Systems: 10%
    1. Identify the type and technology of hood, ventilation, and exhaust system.
    2. Determine deficiencies or circumstances in the hood, ventilation, and exhaust system that will affect the performance of the extinguishing system.
  4. Administration and Records: 6%
    1. Identify the authorities having jurisdiction and submit layout for permit, for the installation.
    2. Prepare the layout of the system to the system's listing.
    3. Document the layout as installed.
    4. Provide certifications and manuals to end users, as well as prepare reports and affix seals and tags.
  5. Installations: 24%
    1. Remediate existing conditions.
    2. Identify local geographic conditions and structural conditions of the installation, i.e., earthquake zones, building structure.
    3. Determine installation material required to install the system.
    4. Identify, coordinate, and install the system.
    5. Conduct the acceptance test of the system.
  6. Inspection: 2%
    1. Perform periodic inspection of the system.
  7. Maintenance and Recharge: 20%
    1. Perform semi-annual maintenance on the system.
    2. Perform recharge of the system.
    3. Perform hydrostatic test or six-year maintenance of the system.
    4. Determine if circumstances have occurred that require an upgrade or alteration.

NAFED Engineered Fire Suppression Systems Technician Exam
See the Engineered Exam Question Reference for information on the exam's content.

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How should I prep for the exam?
A good study of the applicable standards will be all the preparation some individuals need.

For more intensive preparation, NAFED offers training seminars to aid individuals who are planning to take a certification exam. These training seminars help individuals become familiar with the appropriate NFPA standards from which the exams are based so that they can easily find information during the timed exam. Individuals who view the seminars also get a chance to complete a practice exam so they will know exactly what to expect when they face the real deal. The online seminars can be accessed here.

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How much does the exam cost?
  • Portable Fire Extinguisher Technician Exam, $180
  • Pre-Engineered Kitchen Fire Extinguishing System Technician Exam, $180
  • Pre-Engineered Industrial Fire Extinguishing System Technician Exam, $180
  • Engineered Fire Suppression Systems Technician Exam, $149

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What happens when my certification expires?
NAFED handles certification renewals. Certifications are valid for three years. All individuals who successfully complete a certification exam will receive information regarding criteria for renewal. For more information about our certification renewal policy, click here.

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I need a new certificate. What do I do?
If your certificate has been lost or you need to change information on it, fill out this form and fax or mail it to us.

Updated 8/6/13