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which fire extinguisher?


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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.

The fireman putting the course on said the dry chemical 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 he didn't have to re-build his garage.

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I'm just wondering,,,, I have a fire "Blanket" in the kitchen on the basis that if it were say a fat fire I don't need to be spreading it around with an extinghisher, I'm just thinking about the effectiveness of a fire blanket on our cars, blanket thrown on top and extinguisher from underneath? Though I fear the best solution is nor to allow the insurance to lapse.

Roger

Life is like a sewer, what you get out of it, depends on what you put into it. (Tom Leahrer)

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discussions like this make me a paranoid.....i need to get to get a bigger extinguisher or increase the insurance value, or both.

Edited by GavinT
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Though I fear the best solution is not to allow the insurance to lapse...

Sadly true i guess*.

Scenario:

You have a fire shut in a big plastic box with a couple of rusty fuel tanks either side of it

both typically sat on petrol soaked foam and connected with rotting hoses weeping vapour.

All it needs is the lid lifting and a bit of oxygen...

Enter the brave.

:D

*

A lesson i learnt two hundred years ago when i was marshalling the storming of the bastille

and an FSO Polonez burning at the gates erupted into a fireball when one of the mutinous

gardes fran

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"A lesson i learnt two hundred years ago when i was marshalling the storming of the bastille

and an FSO Polonez burning at the gates erupted into a fireball when one of the mutinous

gardes fran

Being second is to be the first of the ones who lose.

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If I had a fire in my Esprit again, I would get out and leg it!!!

Wot, and deprive us of those great pictures?

"At home, I have a King Sized bed. Now, I don't know any Kings, but I would imagine if one were to come over, he would be comfortable." -Mitch Hedberg

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I wouldn't use a CO2 extinguisher. We once tried to put out a small fire at work and got through about 3 CO2 extinguishers before a wet towel sorted it. As soon as we stopped squirting the CO2, the fire relit. The hot air rising from the fire seemed to drag the CO2 with it. We were most unimpressed. And this was indoors so things would be worse if the fire were outside.

S4 Elan, Elan +2S, Federal-spec, World Championship Edition S2 Esprit #42, S1 Elise, Excel SE

 

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hi, only used c02 in my full size dalek, didnt put any fires out, but did exterminate a few people, if i saw a esprit on fire, would give it a blast just for a laugh, cant get too close ,thats fibreglass also, 4k dalek, probably worth more than what your trying to put out,happened to me with a elite years ago, to be fair should have let it go,something makes you want to put it out?hope my esprit dont catch, just fitted a new set of dust caps on wheels.

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This subject comes round every so often and I have had a lot of experience in this area. I used to do the approval testing for extinguishers years ago, including car extinguishers. So having put out several hundred car fires, I have to comment:

Have you ever used a fire extinguisher?

Have you ever fought a petrochemical fire?

Have you experience in car fires?

Because when your car is on fire is not the time to start learning.

If you get an extinguisher, get taught how to use it effectively. Otherwise only consider that extinguisher as a personal aid to buy you time if you get trapped in the car while it is burning.

If you are going to fit one for this purpose;

- minimum 2kg dry powder (Bibs has already explained)

- mount it securely (imagine the deceleration force if you hit something in an accident - you dont want to be hit by a flying extinguisher!)

In all other cases GET OUT AND AWAY

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