FYI: Fire extinguisher types for home/garage - LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community
 
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-13-2009, 12:44 PM Thread Starter
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FYI: Fire extinguisher types for home/garage

Just last week I finished my fire extinguisher training. Here's what they said (its for work, but I asked about cars and garages).

The dry chemical (class A, B, C) put out gas/flammable liquid, electrical, and paper/wood/rubber.
This one is the recommended one as it puts out just about everything.

They do destroy electronics - so much so that if you will likely write your car off if you fire one of these at it.
You also need an industrial clean-up crew as the particles are too small for a normal vacuum to trap.


CO2 are for class B and C fires (gas/flammable liquid, electrical). They will also work on paper/wood/rubber but are not recommended as they tend to blow that stuff around (causing more fires) and don't provide continued suppression for burning wood or rubber - so it may light up again. Firing that on a hot engine component could crack it (as they are super cool), but its cheaper than writing off all electronics in the engine compartment or entire car.


Class D are for exotic flammable metals, so if your magnesium wheels are on fire, you'll need one of these - but they don't put out anything else.


Haylon is now a banned substance, as its a serious ozone destroying chemical. There's a replacement one that has haylon-something in the name. Its also really deadly - much more so than CO2 (which will kill you if you get shot in the face).


Class K are for kitchen fires (grease). This is the foam one that foams up a good foot and a half thick. Easy to clean up - highly recommended for a kitchen.



The fireman putting the course on said the dry chemical (for a car or garage) is the way to go as your primary concern is stopping the fire - but it will destroy electronics. He said if you fire it in garage, it could fly all over and destroy any electronics it gets on - he cited on garage fire where one was used and it put out the car fire but also destroyed the guy's Harley (which wasn't near the fire). But then again, he didn't have to re-build his garage and nobody got hurt.
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-13-2009, 12:51 PM
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heh........a small part of my training is also fire related.......we lit a pan of jet fuel ( once it starts burning, it's very hard to put out )......and tried all types of fire extinguishers to see which one worked the best.......The best one ???
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water. yup. even the fire guys were amazed.

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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-13-2009, 12:56 PM Thread Starter
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Water extinuguishers are for class A - wood/paper/rubber.

If you want to spray that on an electrified engine, go ahead. It will also just spread out the flammable liquids unless you can completely submerge them.

However, you just add water, anti-rust chemical and air pressure (from a normal compressor) and they're ready to go again.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-14-2009, 07:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BadMonkey72D View Post
......There's a replacement one that has haylon-something in the name. Its also really deadly - much more so than CO2 (which will kill you if you get shot in the face).....
I believe it is called Halotron, I had one in my Miata. The guy at the extinguisher store recommended it since it wouldn't throw powder everywhere and destroy an engine compartment. He never mentioned the lethality of it though. Are you saying a breath of the stuff would kill you or does it have to be inhaled continually?

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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-14-2009, 02:39 PM
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We used several different fire extinguishers on multiple fire types during my offshore survival training. On the diesel fire, water based foam worked really well. CO2 would kill it temporarily, but once the diesel gets hot enough it just reignites. You could watch the foam build up a layer on top of the fire and walk that layer across the pan of diesel putting the fire out and preventing it from restarting. Draw back is they only work on a standing pool of liquid. If the pool is flowing it pushes the foam around and exposes more fuel to the air and lets it keep burning. Halotron or one of the other Halon gas replacements work great, but wind is the enemy with these. I think for a garage I would personally use foam, but then my garage is packed full of toys and tools so putting out the fire only to destroy the things I'm trying to save from the fire kind of defeats the purpose with the dry chemical.

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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-17-2009, 06:52 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Noble View Post
I believe it is called Halotron, I had one in my Miata. The guy at the extinguisher store recommended it since it wouldn't throw powder everywhere and destroy an engine compartment. He never mentioned the lethality of it though. Are you saying a breath of the stuff would kill you or does it have to be inhaled continually?

Noble
You're right, the haylon replacement is "Halotron."

They said if you breath it in (haylon) you'll die - but I suppose its a matter of volume (haylon to air ratio in your lungs). Like CO2 it displaces oxygen, but its better at it. It is directed and heavier than air, so as long as you don't shoot it at someone or in a confined space (like maybe in the car while someone is in it), I assume its safe - I guess you weigh which way you want to die.

Maybe you could stop by your local fire station and ask? They must know.

Dry chemical in your lungs just gets coughed out.

They said if you shot a CO2 extinguisher in someones face it will freeze their air passages (dead tissue now) and suck all the air out of whats left of their lungs.

Water extinguisher have an anti-rust chemical in them that can damage eyes (if it gets in them).

If you can find an ABC rated foaming one, that would be the best (i've only seen AB foam - no C and C is electrical). No chance of inhalation and it prevents re-ignition.


Again, here are the ratings:
Class A Class A fire extinguishers are used on fires involving ordinary combustibles, such as wood, paper, cloth, rubber and some plastics.

Class B Class B fire extinguishers are used on fires involving flammable liquids such as gasoline, oils, diesel fuel, grease, paints, thinners, etc.

Class C Class C fire extinguishers are designated as Class C denoting that the agent in the fire extinguisher does not conduct electricity. Class C fires involve energized electrical equipment.

Class D Class D fire extinguishers are used on fires involving combustible metals such as magnesium, titanium, aluminum, etc.

Class K Class K fire extinguishers are used especially in the kitchen for cooking oil and grease fires involving kitchen appliances.
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