Choosing A Fire Extinguisher
Every home and business should have a fire extinguisher on premises and choosing a fire extinguisher that fits your needs is extremely important.
All household fire extinguishers are classified A, B or C. They can also be a combination of the three.
Choosing A Fire Extinguisher Is Extremely Important For Your Home Or Office
Class A extinguishers are effective against fires involving paper, wood, textiles and plastic. The primary chemical used to extinguish such fires is mono-ammonium phosphate. This chemical has the ability to smother the aforementioned types of materials.
Class B is effective against flammable liquid fires. These can be fires where cooking liquids, grease, oil, gasoline, kerosene or flammable paint have been ignited.
Two chemicals are effective extinguishing these types of fires. Mono-ammonium phosphate smothers the fire, while sodium bicarbonate induces a chemical reaction that completely extinguishes the flames.
Class C extinguishers are suitable for fires where there is “live” electrical equipment. Both mono-ammonium phosphate and sodium bicarbonate are effective on electric because of their nonconductive properties.
A multi-purpose dry chemical or ABC fire extinguisher is the fourth choice. It will handle all three types of household and small business fires. It utilizes an especially liquefied and siliconized mono ammonium phosphate chemical. It chemically insulates Class A fires by melting at 350 degrees Fahrenheit, coating the surface to which it has been applied. It smothers and chemically breaks the chain reaction of Class B fires and it will not conduct electricity.
The other choice that needs to be determined is the fire extinguishers size. Normally bigger is better but make sure it is not too heavy for everyone to maneuver it effectively. The weight displayed on an extinguisher refers to the amount of chemical inside, the canister itself adds several more pounds.
The National Fire Protection Association recommends an extinguisher for each floor.