It’s important to check your type 5 life jacket regularly to make sure it is in good condition, and is ready to keep you safe if you ever need it. Depending on how often your life jacket is used, there are different recommended intervals for inspections.

Annual Visual Inspections

No matter how often your type 5 life jacket is used, you should do a visual inspection every year to make sure it is still in good condition. You should check for:

    • Cracks and Tears: Look for any tears or cracks on straps, buckles and webbing.
    • Fasteners and Features: Make sure the fasteners are all in place and that the features such as whistle and bright colors are working.
    • Foam Material: Check the inside of the life jacket to see if it is hardened, or showing signs of age or deterioration.

If you find any problems, the life jacket should be replaced as soon as possible.

Monthly Inflatable Life Jacket Checks

If you have an inflatable type 5 life jacket, you should check it each month for any issues. In particular, you should check for:

    • Leaks: Spray the jacket with fresh water and make sure there are no wet spots, which could indicate a leak.
    • Cylinder Pressure: Check the firing head’s pressure gauge for the correct pressure readings.
    • Deployment: Ensure that the life jacket automatically inflates should it be deployed.

If you find any problems with your inflatable life jacket, it should be serviced as soon as possible by a certified technician.


Type 5 life jackets should be visually inspected at least once a year and inflatable models should be checked once a month to ensure they are in good working order. If any problems are found they should be fixed or replaced immediately.

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