Maintaining your defibrillator is essential as it will continue its optimal condition. Doing so ensures, when it’s next used, that no issues will arise when it’s needed most. If there are issues due to lack of maintenance, then it could prove dangerous to use or, possibly, not work at all.
Why should I perform defibrillator maintenance?
Keeping your defibrillator maintained could be the difference between life or death for someone experiencing a cardiac arrest. Defibrillator maintenance would largely need to be performed after each use. Not only does it ensure the defibrillator is ready for any future use but it also keeps it in a hygienic state as the use requires contact to the skin of the patient.
Do I need to service my defibrillator and if so, how often?
Forms of defibrillator maintenance may differ depending on the device you have. Each defibrillator is relatively the same, in most cases, but as per the manufacturer, requirements could be different. We highly suggest reading the instruction manual for the defibrillator you have or getting in touch with the manufacturer.
Areas to focus
There are specific areas that would need to be addressed when maintaining your defibrillator – pads and batteries.
Defibrillator pads are used to administer the shock to someone experiencing a cardiac arrest. Because of this, for hygiene reasons, these will need to be replaced after each use and new pads purchased and fit.
If the pads haven’t yet been used, when performing maintenance we would suggest checking the expiry as they will go ‘out of date’. The reason for the expiry is to ensure they are in working order and ready to be used. Typical pads have a shelf-life of around 2-5 years. We would suggest checking the defibrillator user manual for further details on the specifics of the pads you have installed on your defibrillator.
Similarly to the pads, the batteries do also have a shelf-life and would need to be replaced if they are older than the recommended expiry duration. Typically, a battery’s life lasts from 2-5 years. Once again, we suggest checking the expiry from the manufacturer’s user manual and replace if needed.
If the battery is in-date but has been used, charging the battery would need to happen. This ensures there is enough charge for another use as a single use of the defibrillator can use a large portion of the battery percentage.
Thanks to the development of defibrillator maintenance and the ability for them to be kept and used for years, pads and batteries are available for most defibrillator models. They are however offered in different sizes and requirements. This means you need to check the operational means of your device ahead of purchasing new parts. This information can be found within your manufacturer user manual.
If further assistance is needed in this area, a member of our team will happily advise the best course of action for your situation and your defibrillator maintenance.
Disposing of used/old parts
After the replacement of the pads and batteries, the old parts will need to be disposed of properly. Knowing where to dispose of these parts safely is important, especially the battery.
As the pads don’t include any form of hazardous material, these can be disposed of as general waste – a typical black bin for example.
If you’re looking to dispose of used pads, these should be disposed of as infectious waste. There’s a chance that used pads could include bodily fluids, or anything similar, so ensuring they’re disposed of correctly is of high importance.
As with any other form of battery, these need to be disposed of safely. You may have seen the battery disposal bins at your local supermarket. It is fine to put the defibrillator battery in this bin. Alternatively, contacting your local council will provide other possible disposal options.