Portable Fire Extinguishers
Portable fire extinguishers are one of the easiest ways to control, contain and extinguish small kitchen, house, office and workplace fires. Fixed, wheeled and portable fire extinguishers are made for specific applications and are used for class A, B, C, D and K fires.
Fire extinguishers are fairly easy to operate, however if you do not feel confident using a portable fire extinguisher we suggest you take a class teaching you the proper use in case of an emergency. There are online fire extinguisher lesson plans available from NFPA, we found this portable fire extinguisher lesson plan from NFPA's archives.
How to Use a Portable Fire Extinguisher
Using a portable fire extinguisher is fairly simple and straightforward. However if you feel uncomfortable using one we suggest you take a class teaching you proper use of a fire extinguisher.
- Hold fire extinguisher upright
- Find safety ring and remove by pulling the pin
- Stand at least 8-10 feet from the source of fire
- Aim the fire extinguisher hose at base of the fire
- Squeeze trigger and slowly sweep side to side
NFPA 10 : Standard for Portable Fire Extinguishers
NFPA 10 standards and codes for portable fire extinguishers can be found on NFPA's website. "1.1* Scope. The provisions of this standard apply to the selection, installation, inspection, maintenance, and testing of portable extinguishing equipment. 1.1.1 Portable fire extinguishers are intended as a first line of defense to cope with fires of limited size. 1.1.2 The selection and installation of extinguishers is independent of whether the building is equipped with automatic sprinklers, standpipe and hose, or other fixed protection equipment. (See 5.5.5, 22.214.171.124, 126.96.36.199, and 188.8.131.52.) 1.1.3 The requirements given herein are minimum. 1.1.4 The requirements do not apply to permanently installed systems for fire extinguishment, even where portions of such systems are portable (such as hose and nozzles attached to a fixed supply of extinguishing agent)."
Compliance "Code Required" Portable Fire Extinguishers
Always make sure your manufacturers fire extinguishers comply with the recommendations of the National Fire Protection Association and are tested and rated by Underwriters Laboratories or FM Global to ANSI / UL Standards. All extinguisher nameplates contain the necessary HMIS information to comply with national and local OSHA requirements.
Specialty Types of Fire Extinguishers
Specialty type extinguishers are intended for use on particular types of hazards, so careful attention should be made to locating them in close proximity to the specific hazard they are meant to protect. It is natural for a person to use the extinguisher located nearest to a fire. The most current issue of NFPA-10 should be consulted for minimum recommended fire extinguisher types, placement and travel distances.
Below is a diagram showing the different classes of fire known to man. There are fire extinguishers designed for each specialty type of fire or fire class.
Installing Portable Fire Extinguishers
Installing a portable fire extinguisher into your home residence or commercial business will only help give you peace of mind, meet any state or city building, fire and health requirements,
Portable Fire Extinguishers Service, Repair and Maintenance
Keeping your portable fire extinguishers properly maintained through service and repair will be required on all installed portable fire extinguishers. Always contact a licensed portable fire extinguisher company, certified portable fire extinguisher technician to conduct service calls made to repair your portable fire extinguishers. Your fire extinguisher company may be using NFPA Form 16A to record any fire extinguisher inspections, maintenance or recharges.
Required Portable Fire Extinguishers Tests and Inspections
Your portable fire extinguishers will require monthly, semi-annual, annual and 5, 6, 12 year tests and inspections depending on the types of portable fire extinguishers you have installed. Have a licensed portable fire extinguishers company or certified portable fire extinguishers technician establish a set schedule and frequency for your portable fire extinguishers tests and inspections.
Residential, Commercial and Industrial Portable Fire Extinguishers
Residential portable fire extinguishers are designed and engineered to keep your family, belongings and home safe in the event of a fire. Commercial and industrial portable fire extinguishers are designed and engineered to save lives, inventory and property from the dangers of fire, many states and cities require that all commercial and industrial business have installed portable fire extinguishers to meet state, city and insurance agency fire, health and building codes.