Fire extinguishers are the first line of defense for every residential and commercial establishment against any potential fire hazards. These are the most crucial fire safety devices and are mandatory for every commercial property as per the fire safety regulations. However, one specific kind of fire extinguisher may not be effective against all kinds of fires. Therefore, different kinds of fire extinguishers are designed to put out particular types of fires.
Fire extinguishers are classified into various categories depending on the type of fires they can extinguish. Here are the different types of fire extinguishers and when to use them:
Class ‘A’ Fire Extinguisher
Class A fire extinguishers are used to extinguish Class ‘A’ fires (fires caused by ordinary solid combustibles, such as paper, wood, clothes). To put out a class ‘A’ fire, the heat needs to be extinguished, and the oxygen supply needs to be cut off. Therefore, the class ‘A’ fire extinguishers usually consist of pressurized water. Pressurized water is the most effective way to cool down the fire source. A class ‘A’ fire extinguisher is usually labeled as a triangle with the letter "A" in the middle.
Class ‘B’ Fire Extinguisher
Class ‘B’ fire extinguishers are used to extinguish fires classified as class ‘B’ (fire caused due to flammable and combustible liquids such as alcohol, petroleum, gasoline). To extinguish a Class ‘B’ fire, the oxygen supply must be cut off, and flames must be smothered to stop the fire from burning. As the fire is liquid-based, a Class ‘A’ fire extinguisher will be ineffective. Thus, a class ‘B’ fire extinguisher is used to completely smother the fire with its carbon dioxide (CO2) fire extinguishing agent. A class ‘B’ fire extinguisher sprays cold liquid CO2, dissipating the heat and eliminating its oxygen supply, successfully extinguishing the fire. This type of fire extinguisher is labeled with a square symbol containing the letter "B."
Class ‘C’ Fire Extinguisher
Class ‘C’ fire extinguishers are used to extinguish class ‘C’ fires (fires caused due to electrical equipment). This type of fire requires electrically non-conductive extinguishing agents to eliminate the fire. For this, a special kind of fire extinguisher classified as class ‘C’ is used. A class ‘C’ fire extinguisher usually contains mono ammonium phosphate and sodium bicarbonate extinguishing agents with non-conductive properties.
Class ‘D’ Fire Extinguisher
Class ‘D’ fires are caused due to combustible metals, such as magnesium, titanium, lithium, etc. These fires usually occur in commercial buildings, manufacturing facilities, or laboratories that deal in the storage or production of flammable metals. These kinds of fires are not easy to extinguish. They require a class ‘D’ fire extinguisher containing powdered graphite, copper-based or granular sodium chloride-based extinguishing agent. A class ‘D’ fire extinguisher can effectively separate the metal from the oxygen supply and resist the burning metals.
Class ‘K’ Fire Extinguisher
Kitchen fires, similar to class ‘B’ fires, are caused due to flammable liquids such as cooking oils, grease, and cooking equipment, but these are relatively high heat fires. These are usually common in commercial kitchens and are capable of spreading rapidly. A class B fire extinguisher can not effectively extinguish these kinds of fires. Thus, a class ‘K’ extinguisher is used to eliminate the class ‘K’ fires in the kitchen. The class K fire extinguisher contains a wet mist of chemical extinguishing agents. It quickly engulfs the fire under a foam blanket and completely cuts off its oxygen supply.
ABC fire extinguisher
An ABC fire extinguisher is a multi-utility fire extinguisher that can extinguish a combination of class A, B, or C fires. These are designed to handle more than one type of fire threat as per your facilities’ unique requirements.
If you would like to know more about portable Fire Extinguishers or need fire extinguisher inspection or maintenance services, you can contact our experts at FireServ. FireServ is the leading provider of reliable fire extinguishers installation, inspections, and maintenance services across northern America. In addition, we specialize in designing commercial fire protection systems that are well-suited to the particular needs of different types of commercial businesses. So, if you need professional fire protection system services, we would love to assist you.
Consult with our experts today!
Call Us Today At