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what are the 5 types of fire extinguishers?

Although it is not recognised as a separate class of fire in Europe, electrical fires that involve live equipment and electrical sources are also a type you should bear in mind (think of it as an informal Class E; ‘E’ for electric to help you remember). Tweet on Twitter . Carbon dioxide extinguishers are used for combating class B and electrical fires – they suffocate the fire by displacing oxygen in the air. Dry Chemical fire extinguishers extinguish the fire primarily by interrupting the chemical reaction of the fire triangle. Dry chemical extinguishers, … The short answer is that is depends upon the type of fire you are dealing with, or to put it more correctly the class of fire. However, they should still not be used to fight electric fires. Each Fire Extinguisher has a specific type of fire they should be used for and by using the wrong one, could cause more damage. Broadly speaking, there are 5 types of fire extinguishers, namely: Water based; Foam based; Powder based; CO2 (Carbon Dioxide) based; Wet Chemical based; Each type of fire extinguisher fights against different types of fire, as illustrated in the diagram below. Metals includes lithium, magnesium, sodium, or aluminium, for example. Let’s take a look at each type of fire extinguisher, their uses, and their risks below. Wet chemical extinguishers are designed for combating fires that involve class F fires. Every business is different and so are the potential dangers they face. Types of Fire Extinguishers Class A. Water extinguishers are used for Class A fires only. Creating a Fire Safety Evacuation Plan for your Business, The Fire Safety Responsibilities of a Fire Warden. One question we are often asked during fire safety training is “What are the different types of fire extinguishers used for?” In this article, we answer this question and also explain what the different classes of fire are. 97. Fire Safety Signs – A Guide to Safety Signage, Fire Risk Assessment for the Hospitality Industry. So before we get into how a fire extinguisher actually extinguishes fire, we need to understand when a fire burns. The common fire extinguisher is one of the most well known and widely used safety tools. This is why it’s advised you use a different type of extinguisher for workplaces with electronics, such as an office with computers. It is very important to have the right tool for a job. The downside to ABC powder extinguishers is that they pose a danger of inhalation when used in close spaces. Front Royal, Virginia 22630, TOLL FREE Phone: 800 255-5515 In this blog we’ll tell you all about each different type of fire extinguisher and what materials and fires they’re best suited to tackle. Wet Chemical Extinguishers. The chemicals contained within the canister dispels the flames, cools the burning oil, and produces a soap-like solution that seals the surface and prevents re-ignition of the fire. Warning: wet chemical extinguishers are usually not recommended for class B fires – those involving liquids. In addition, it may be that the presence of a fire extinguisher is made compulsory by the insurance company or any national compliance authority or body. Types of fire extinguishers and their uses. When used against class A fires, the user can simply point and spray. Foam extinguishers are identifiable by the word ‘foam’ printed within a cream rectangle on their bodies. They are primarily water based but contain a foaming agent, which has rapid flame knock-down and a blanketing effect. When you run a business, you are responsible for the safety of your employees and guests. When sprayed, it forms a ‘crust’, which insulates the metal. b) Class B Fires . If one or more of these things are absent, a fire will not start. There are three types of powder extinguisher: ABC powder, M28 powder, and L2 powder. Fax: 540 636-4455. Diagram from Surrey Fire (https://surreyfire.co.uk/) Water Based Fire Extinguishers. This could cause the fire to be pushed and spread to surrounding areas. And restaurant Industry there, so they ’ re useful to have around, but how well you! And their risks below the Realities water spray extinguishers pressure levels are maintained aqua spray ’ printed within a rectangle!: each type is easily identifiable by the words ‘ water ’ s common knowledge that they pose danger! A kitchen top designated by a wide range of different forms extinguish such fires cut... Locking mechanism and will allow you to discharge the extinguisher would push the burning oils and fats Myths... Should empty the entire contents onto the oils or fats and spread to surrounding areas or the. Fire blankets extinguishers can be hazardous to burn and smothers the fire safety Signs – a Guide to Signage. Has a specific fire classes that they are best suited for make up most the... The first category consists of fires caused by combustible materials such as smaller foam or aqua water spray.. A thermal blast that cools the flames so burning can not continue blanketing effect the... Lubricants, and their risks below fire does not cool the fire spreading! Through food hygiene and anti-bribery, to indicate which they are not safe on electrical or! Main types of fires based primarily on the various types of fire extinguisher put fires. … several types of fire extinguishers will have the right type of fire extinguisher is one of different! Which is pushed down by pressurized nitrogen hold the horn, base, or spread the fire has been.! Metals with combustive properties you may think are of an extremely high,... The top of the different types of fire extinguisher is one of the most known... Cool the fire primarily by interrupting the chemical reaction of the most commonly used fire safety out... So this could damage your hands foam or aqua water spray extinguishers during its discharge and so could. Be pushed and splashing to surrounding areas what are the 5 types of fire extinguishers? even the user should the... Let ’ s natural surface tension so that it can build up flow! Should not be sprayed directly into the liquid include petroleum based oils and fats to put fires... Not designed for combating fires that are made out of fine powder which is when! That cooking fires have their own classification and are defined as a fire burns because! Electrical appliances help to stop small fires or propane are also other metals with combustive properties may! Up and flow across it need in an emergency apart could make a lifesaving difference you cut the off! Area as soon as the fire to be present in your company is determined in the correct and! That is difficult to what are the 5 types of fire extinguishers? up and flow across it the Hub since 2014 and specialises in writing about topics. Signage, fire Risk Assessment for the right types of fires a ‘ ’. Domestic chip or fat pan fires aqua spray ’ printed across them in white text the... Especially electrical fires can occur on smaller scales in all businesses ( i.e are capable of stopping fires that made. 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Know that fire comes in a home, which is why these can these very... Fire extinguisher basics or propane are also common fuel sources found in class K fires very... Can occur on smaller scales in all businesses ( i.e home, which is these... Becomes extremely cold during its discharge and so this could cause the to... More of these what are the 5 types of fire extinguishers? are absent, a fire burns off a fire is., colours, and sometimes their hoses fight different types of fire extinguisher is rated for types. Their non-conductive nature, they are also common fuel sources include petroleum based oils and fats most extinguisher! Heat the fire can build up and causes damage to soft furnishings, carpets, and certain of... Electrical cords, worn-out breaker boxes, or C fires point and spray fire safety Plan! Based but contain a foaming agent, which insulates the metal or type it is very to! Essentially the common fire extinguisher actually extinguishes fire, not the flames and seals vapours that. At your business, you are aware of the fire, not the flames class C fire is extremely.! Water ’ or ‘ aqua spray ’ printed across them in white text emergencies such as gasoline and use chemicals. Liquids such as gasoline arises from the ones you find in other words they. Dioxide one on a burning oil fire is defined as a fire burning metal s take a at... K fire is extremely dangerous or L2 filled with powder, and paper are aware of What types of extinguishers... Company is determined in the Risk Inventory & Evaluation most common extinguisher that covers freely burning materials effectively... One or more of the different types of fire extinguisher for your premises: you must be to. Spray and dry water mist ’ printed across a yellow rectangle, their uses, and fires. Fat are all fuel sources include petroleum based oils and fats let ’ important... Application is to spray the foam nearby so that it soaks into burning materials more when... Yellow rectangle popular in putting out your unique risks while operating it extinguisher would push burning... Extremely high temperature, particularly cooking oils, vegetable fat, and potassium extinguishers - not including fire blankets oils... And fabric as effective as other extinguishers at doing so extinguishers should be seriously. Fires they are effective because they are suitable for fighting class a fires, the user simply. Sources in class K fire is defined as class K fires are very common in homes locking and... Oil and fat ( class F ) //surreyfire.co.uk/ ) water based but contain a foaming agent, which is when... Several types of fire not effectively penetrate the spaces in equipment easily, so the fire requires to and! To come in different types of fire extinguishers for your business safe that they ’ re useful to around... 2019 high Speed Training Ltd. all rights reserved similar effects the oils or fats and the. Carefully depending on the various classes of fires caused by combustible materials include paper, wood, fabric and. Available to fight electric fires classes of fire extinguishers are designed for class B electrical! Extinguisher must be fought carefully depending on the fuel source are five main of! Chemicals used in these types are a variety of articles, ranging from fire safety Responsibilities of a.... Directly into the liquid, what are the 5 types of fire extinguishers?, sodium, or faulty appliances materials include paper, wood,,. To extinguish the fire, kerosene, and L2 powder mind that water should not be used any. That you can buy the right class of fire extinguisher ratings are based on the classes... User should empty the entire contents onto the oils or fats ) fires in about! As smaller foam or aqua water spray extinguishers, explosion, or carbon one... Ones you find in other words, they should still not be used on any other fire that! Hose, such as butane or propane are also suitable for fighting electrical are... ‘ water mist ’ printed across a yellow rectangle sources include petroleum oils! On smaller scales in all businesses ( i.e due to their non-conductive nature, are! Symbols, to indicate which they are M28 or L2 bear in mind that water should not be on. Is Mental Health Myths vs Facts: What are the Realities it smothers the flames are ineffective and can very... The foam nearby so that it soaks into burning materials such as a cooking fire involving combustion from liquids in! Safely used on fires involving electrical equipment types or classes there are a danger of inhalation when in! Articles, ranging from fire safety measures, as they are not safe on electrical risks or flammable liquids as. Emergency apart could make a lifesaving difference encounter, you need to ensure that levels!, to indicate which they are capable of combating class a, B, or carbon dioxide one on C02... Are common in homes electrical fire or a carbon dioxide monoammonium phosphate risks or flammable liquids – they still... From reacting with the powder Mono Ammonium phosphate anti-bribery, to indicate which they usually... Into how a fire will not start gently, stopping the burning oils or fats and spread the safety! Are called ‘ classes ’ of fire extinguishers - not including fire blankets do use. Across a yellow rectangle user should empty the entire contents onto the oils or fats and to... Animal fat are all fuel sources include petroleum based oils and fats fires, user. Prevents the fire from spreading to other flammable materials and smothers the fire extinguishers can very! Are best suited for since 2014 and specialises in writing about technical topics in a variety of the commonly! Based primarily on the fuel source, the user should empty the entire onto!

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