Selecting, Storing, And Replacing The Fire Extinguishers In Your Home

Your home must have fire extinguishers throughout. Many homeowners either don't have an extinguisher in their home, or they don't have the right type of extinguisher to protect themselves and their homes from fire. Here, you'll learn about the different types of extinguishers, where to place them, and how to know when to replace them.

Types of Extinguishers

There are four main categories of fire extinguishers.

  • Class A: for ordinary combustible fires
  • Class B: for flammable liquid fires
  • Class C: for electrical fires
  • Class D: for combustible metal fires

Residential settings are commonly equipped with Class A, B, or C extinguishers, but if you do any metalworking in your garage or basement, a Class D extinguisher should also be purchased.

Placement of the Extinguishers

In many cases, the one fire extinguisher that is in the home is stored under the kitchen counter, near the stove. This is due to thinking that fires will only happen on the stove, but the truth is, the fire can spread rapidly, and you may not be able to get to the extinguisher stored in the kitchen.

Instead of storing the fire extinguisher right next to the stove, store it in the doorway leading to the kitchen. This will provide quick, easy access in the event of a kitchen fire.

Other areas that should be equipped with fire extinguishers include:

  • The Bedroom
  • The Basement
  • The Hallway
  • The Garage
  • Any room with a wood burning stove or fireplace
  • Any rooms that share walls with the chimney

You honestly can't have too many fire extinguishers around your home. You can never guess where the fire will start or how quickly it will spread throughout the home.

When to Replace Extinguishers

Fire extinguishers aren't going to last forever—even if you never have to use it, it will eventually need to be replaced.

The first thing to check is the date stamp. There will be an expiration date stamped on the unit. When that date comes, take the fire extinguisher to your local fire department or fire extinguisher supplier to have it tested or to turn it in for recycling.

If the date hasn't passed, check the rubber hose twice each year. You need to be sure that the hose hasn't dry rotted while it's been stored. Squeeze it, and watch for stress fractures to form in the rubber. If the rubber becomes discolored, it's time to replace it.

Talk with your local fire extinguisher professional to learn more about selecting, storing, and replacing the fire extinguishers in your home.

For more information, talk to companies like Fire Foe Corp.