Having an AED Isn’t Enough!

A good number of AED (Automated External Defibrillators) that inspect in the workplace might not work in case of emergency. It’s great to have an AED in the workplace but unless someone is maintaining and inspecting it on a regular basis, it might not actually work when you need it.


You need to assign someone to inspect that AED at least  once a month. Set up a calendar reminder on their computer so that they don’t forget.

Here is the AED inspection checklist:

  1. First thing to check is the battery. Most defibrillator have two batteries. One is the battery that actually powers the AED when you use it, administrating the shock. Most AED batteries have a 4-5 year life (check with your manufacturer) and should be replaced after that period regardless of whether or not it has ever been used. There should be an expiration date stamped on the battery. The other is usually a small 9 volt battery that your AED uses to do regular self-testing. There should be a small light that blinks on your AED letting you know if this battery needs to be replaced or not. Green means it’s still good, orange or red means it needs to be replaced.
  2. Second thing to check are the pads. AED pads have a 2-year expiration date. Again the date should be stamped on the package that the pads come in.
  3. Third is a quick visual inspection to make sure that there are no frayed wires, disconnected leads or obvious damage that might hinder the AED from working when needed.
  4. Finally, the accessories should also be checked and replaced as needed. Disposable gloves, for example, deteriorate rather rapidly and should be replaced every six months or so. Check also to make sure that the scissors, CPR barrier, etc… are all still there and replace as needed.

While it’s great that so many companies are finally getting the message and purchasing an AED for the workplace, it’s also important to put together an inspection schedule to make sure that AED can do what it was purchased to do if the time ever comes.

Need an AED? Check out the Zoll AED.