Fire extinguishers are one of the most important and widely used safety devices in human history. They were invented a couple of hundred years ago. These simple tools can save many lives and property when a fire breaks out. Many people are very fortunate enough not to need to use their fire extinguishers too often, you should always keep a few around in case of a potential emergency. It is also vital that you learn how to use them properly and when. Here is some basic information on Houston fire extinguishers and why every home must have at least one.
A fire extinguisher consists of two parts: a reservoir and a nozzle. The reservoir is where you store the pressurized water and is generally located inside of the house. Various fire extinguishers contain different amounts of pressurized water, but the majority should hold about ten gallons of pressurized water. It is important to note that different types of fire extinguishers have different temperatures when it comes to using the water contained therein.
Different Types of Fire Extinguishers
There are various fire extinguishers, the most common of which is the Class A extinguisher. These are often used for electrical fires, as the chemical compounds contained in the liquid will effectively neutralize and kill any fire that occurs within its area of effect. Class A extinguishers are also the most effective for carbon monoxide fires. These are generally available at local hardware stores and come with either a push-button or a pull-button seal. Some Class A extinguishers are available in dry powder form, which is less dense and easier to use than the compressed version.
Class B Fire Extinguishers
Class B fire extinguishers are generally used for fires involving toxic materials, including chemicals and organic materials. While this classification is helpful for many situations, particularly those involving oil and gas operations or electrical fires, it is less effective in other situations. This is because the liquids in these extinguishers tend to be of a lower boiling point and do not readily evaporate into a vapor form like the steam from a hot engine.
Class C Fire Extinguishers
Class C fire extinguishers are used for the more uncommon cases where no other classifications exist. These extinguishers contain a chemical compound called ammonium phosphate, also known as phosphate salts. Monoammonium phosphate is a foaming agent and is commonly found in products such as gasoline, paint, and oven cleaner. The fire extinguishers with this chemical in them will cause an explosion, which will blow up and spread throughout whatever they touched.
For more specific purposes, there are also classification systems for fire extinguishers that include a special device called a fire extinguisher rating. These classifications are relative to the fire extinguishers’ potential for causing burns. The highest classification is Class A, which puts out the flames and heat for the shortest time possible. A Class B extinguisher may cause a painful burn, but it also spreads out in a wide radius, preventing secondary burning materials from spreading as well. A Class C extinguisher puts out both flames and smoke for a period, which allows for a secondary burning material to take hold. Class D extinguishers, the most powerful, put out both flames and smoke for a longer period than any other classification, though they can only handle a small number of fires.