Written by Andy Gurczak

August 6, 2022

How to Choose the Right Size Fire Extinguisher

How to Choose the Right Size Fire Extinguisher

For installing portable fire extinguishers in your home or business, you have to decide how many and what types of fire extinguishers you need. Additionally, you must consider what types of fires could happen in your building. In fact, depending on the size of your home or business building, and the activity that goes on inside, you have to choose the right size fire extinguisher.

Remember, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends in its fire safety standards that every home has a fire extinguisher.

However, a fire extinguisher’s size is just one of several factors that determine its effectiveness. To protect yourself and your home or business in the event of a fire, you need to judge a fire extinguisher’s effectiveness its right type and rating.

ABC fire extinguishers are the most common type of fire extinguisher. The “A” stands for Class A fires. Those are fires involving ordinary combustible materials such as wood, paper, and plastics. Home fires are typically a Class A fire.

Additionally, Class A size ratings tell us the water equivalency of the extinguishing agent inside the canister, which usually ranges from1 to 40.1A rating is the equivalent of 1 and 1/4thgallons of water, while 2A rating means that the extinguishing agent is as efficient as throwing on 2 and ½ gallons of water; and so on.

Class B refers to fires involving flammable liquids like oil, gas, paint’ etc. Class B ratings describe the area in square feet that the fire extinguisher can cover. Class B fire extinguishers have ratings from1 to 160.

Therefore, 20B would show that the fire extinguisher can douse a fire that has spread up to 20 square feet. A 50B rating shows a potential of putting out a fire of 50 square feet, and so forth.

Lastly, Class C fires are electrical fires.

In addition, there are Class D and Class K fire extinguishers. For example, Class D fire extinguishers are needed in industrial facilities where ignitable metals are present.

Class K extinguishers are used to fight a commercial kitchen fire involving grease.

Class C, D and K do not have size ratings.

The minimum walking distance between fire extinguishers depends on the fire threat level in your business.

Typically, 2A:10B:C is the label you’ll find on a standard 5-lb ABC fire extinguisher. Note that the Class C rating isn’t accompanied by a number. The letter simply indicates that they rate the extinguisher to put out electrical fires.

What is the Size of the Space Where a Fire May Occur?

They rate portable fire extinguishers for the size of fire they can put out. For Class A fire extinguishers, this number ranges from 1 to 40, and for Class B, the rating is from 1 to 640. You can find this rating on the label.

Consider how quickly a fire could spread in the area. Additionally, how long it might take someone to notice the fire? For example, a garage fire might spread before you knew it was happening. Therefore, pick a higher rating for an extinguisher for the garage.

Conversely, a small family room with a smoke detector is likely to burn less quickly. Consequently, a lower rated fire extinguisher is acceptable for such rooms.

For a room of average dimension, a 5 lb. fire extinguisher may be sufficient. For larger commercial spaces and warehouses with electrical equipment where a fire has more room to spread, a larger 10 lb. model may be necessary.

Don’t Forget About the Weight of the Fire Extinguisher

Remember, when using a fire extinguisher, the person will hold the extinguisher with only one hand; the other hand will hold the nozzle, spraying the fire with dry chemical foam or other extinguishing agent.

Most people have no difficulty lifting and operating a 5 lb. home fire extinguisher. However, the 10 lb. model may be difficult for some. If you feel you need the firefighting power of a larger canister, but you’re worried about the greater weight, consider installing two smaller extinguishers side by side. Then the second canister can be used if the first fire extinguisher couldn’t get the job done.

If You Need a Public Adjuster for a Fire Damage Insurance Claim Call AllCity Adjusting

We are a family-owned claims company with five decades of combined adjusting experience. As a result, if there’s one thing we understand, it’s that you need 100% of your claim value.

You have already gone through a tumultuous event. For this reason, get an agency that gets you more.

Hopefully, the fire did not injure you and your family. Additionally, if you had fire extinguishers in your home, you could stop the fire from spreading.

However, if the fire damaged a significant part of your home, you need the help of experienced fire damage public adjusters.

At AllCity Adjusting we work to ensure you get 100% of your fire damage claim value. Equally important, with over 50 years of combined adjusting experience, we know insurance companies and understand where they cut corners. Moreover, we help you build a larger claim, maximize your claim value, and get you back to normal fast.

Therefore, don’t get fooled, get the company that gets you more.

If you have received a low-ball offer from the insurance company, or they are taking too long to process your fire damage claim or you just want to talk to someone on your side, call us at 844.692.3587 or email us at info@allcityadhjusting.com.

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At AllCity Adjusting we help residential and commercial clients alike get the claims support they need. Moreover, we have over 50 years of combined experience helping get our clients the max settlement time and time again. If your claim has been low balled or denied entirely we can help increase your maximum settlement. Call us today for a FREE consultation. Experience the AllCity difference.

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