What Type of Extinguisher do I need?
There are many different types of fire extinguishers on the market. You need to make sure that you choose the correct one for your home or office to ensure the safety of your home or office, your possessions, but most importantly, your family or employees. There are a few key characteristics that determine which type of fire extinguisher is best suited for your environment. They include the type of fire anticipated, who occupies the building, the type of building you’re in including size and construction, and a few others.
A: Class A extinguishers are suitable to put out fires on ordinary combustibles such as wood, paper, cloth, rubber, and many plastics. Extinguishers that are only rated for class A fires are typically filled with water. These extinguishers should ONLY be used for class A fires!
B: Class B extinguishers are suitable to put out fires on flammable liquids, combustible liquids, petroleum greases, oils, oil-based paints, solvents, alcohols, and flammable gases.
C: Class C extinguishers are suitable to put out fires involving energized electrical equipment such as appliances, outlets, breakers, etc. These extinguishers ensure that you do not get shocked when using them. Never use water to put out a class C fire.
D: Class D extinguishers are suitable to put out fires involving combustible metals, such as titanium, magnesium, lithium, zirconium, sodium, etc.
K: Class K extinguishers are suitable to put out fires involving kitchen appliances such as stoves. These fire extinguishers are best for protecting against fires involving vegetable oils and animal fats.
Mixed: There are many extinguishers that are suitable to put out more than one type of fire. Make sure when using these extinguishers that you know exactly which fires they are suitable to put out.