Written by Daan

How do you choose a fire extinguisher?

You always see fire extinguishers hanging in schools, companies, and other institutions. For a company, it's mandatory to have a fire extinguisher in the building. But why don't we have one in house? The fire risk is just as big there. Besides that, a fire extinguisher is a good idea for the car, caravan, or boat. On this advice page, we'll explain what to look for when purchasing a fire extinguisher and what the exact differences between the different types are.

Choosing a fire extinguisher

Fire extinguisher kitchen

Before making a choice, it's important to ask yourself what you want to use the fire extinguisher for. There are different purposes of use for a fire extinguisher:

  • Do you want to be able to extinguish small fires in the house?
  • Do you want to be able to extinguish people who are on fire and limit the damage?
  • Do you want to be able to extinguish gas fires?

Do you want to be able to extinguish small fires in the house?

Fire blanket

To extinguish small fires in the house, a fire blanket is very suitable. With a fire blanket, you can quickly react to a pan fire, a burning piece of clothing, or a fire in the trash can. Keep in mind that a fire blanket isn't suitable for oil and grease fires, such as a fire in the frying pan. Hang the fire blanket in a place where you can easily reach it, like the kitchen. That way, you can quickly grab it in case of an accident.

Do you want to be able to extinguish fire on people and limit the fire damage?

Foam extinguisher

A (spray) foam extinguisher is filled with water and a type of foam. This covers the fire and cools it. You can use a foam extinguisher to extinguish solid materials, liquids, and in some cases oil and grease. This makes the extinguisher suitable for use in the kitchen or the car, for example. The foam has a low environmental impact. While a powder extinguisher leaves behind chemical damage, a foam extinguisher limits the damage. As a result, you can also use a foam extinguisher on a person whose clothing caught fire.

Do you want to be able to extinguish fires caused by gas?

Powder extinguisher

Powder extinguishers are relatively cheap because they're filled with various chemicals. This makes them suitable for extinguishing solid materials, liquids, and gas. The powder is less environmentally-friendly and causes a lot of damage due to its chemical composition. As a result, the burning object always needs to be replaced after it's extinguished. Keep in mind that you'll create a large cloud of dust while extinguishing. This reduces your visibility indoors or at the office, so you can't reach an exit as quickly.

Article by:
Daan Fire Extinguisher Expert.

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