Class D fire extinguishers are commonly found in a chemical laboratory. They are also often fitted to motor vehicles, watercraft, and aircraft - this is required by law in many jurisdictions, for identified classes of vehicles. What the devil is size 13 you may ask? Changing the batteries in your fire alarm panel, locating the optimal evacuation route in your building, and ensuring you have the proper fire extinguishers in the most advantageous spots all trickle to the bottom of our never-ending to-do lists. (See Extinguisher Chart). When it’s time to purchase fire extinguishers for your business, you may be confused by the different letters and numbers on the label. All fire extinguishers have ratings stamped on the faceplate of the appliance. Double check that your fire extinguisher contains a UL rating. Fire Ratings Explained What do fire extinguisher ratings mean? Under NFPA10 all commercial vehicles must carry at least one fire extinguisher, with size/UL rating depending on type of vehicle and cargo (i.e., fuel tankers usually must have a 20 lb (9.1 kg), while most others can carry a 5 lb (2.3 kg)). The test method involves adding water and fuel to circular metal trays (to specified sizes) before igniting and extinguishing the fire. (CO2 is unsuitable for this type of fire), In our example 13A/55B we then have to look at 55B, Class B fires involve burning liquids like petrol, oils (not cooking oils) heptane etc. The numbers and letters printed on fire extinguishers provide information about the tool. In practice you should estimate the volume of combustibles at risk against this benchmark and select the most applicable size for the job. Professional maintenance of fire extinguishers is a vital part of any business’ fire safety strategy, understanding that the integrity of these systems need to be maintained to protect the safety of not only your premises and assets but also your employees and residents. 3 litre Water Additive Fire Extinguisher provides environmentally friendly and non-corrosive method of tackling Class A fires. You find Class A extinguishers with ratings such as 1-A, 2-A, 3-A, 4-A, 6-A, 10-A, 20-A, 30-A and 40-A. This is divided into either Class A or Class B:C to indicate the relative extinguishing effectiveness of the extinguisher. Multiply the number in front of A by 1.25 to figure out the equivalent to gallons of water. Fire Extinguisher Ratings. The prefix 55 again defines the size of fire and in this case is easier to visualise as in this case the test uses 55 litres of burning fuel. The Underwriters Laboratory (UL) rates fire extinguishers to be used on certain types of fires. Fire extinguishers that can put out a fire up to this size are rated 13A. A UL rating ensures that an extinguisher design has been subjected to standardized, uniform tests and has met minimum performance requirements covering such things as discharge time and discharge range. An ABC Fire Extinguisher might have a UL Rating of 4-A:80-B:C. But what do these fire extinguisher ratings mean? There are 9 ratings for Class B fire extinguishers - 21B through to 233B. Fire Extinguisher Ratings Explained The importance of fire safety is oftentimes overlooked in favor of other everyday concerns. Smoke alarms and fire extinguishers are two essential pieces of fire safety equipment every home should have. Step 3 The number represents the chemical/agent's equivalent to gallons of water the extinguisher holds. It’s one of those few things that you buy but hope to never use. This type of fire extinguisher (also called multi-purpose fire extinguisher) is the one that’s recommended for home use. Fire extinguisher ratings are designed to indicate the type of fires they should be used on, and to give an indication of how effective they will be. Located on the fire extinguisher label is the UL rating (Fire Extinguisher Ratings). Click to download Fact Sheet. To see what each fire extinguisher looks like, see our guide to types of fire extinguisher, a BS (BSI) Kitemark, indicating BAFE (British Approval for Fire Equipment) approval. ABC Fire Extinguishers: Mono ammonium phosphate, ABC Dry Chemical, ABE Powder, tri-class, or multi-purpose dry chemical is a dry chemical extinguisher used on class A, B and C fires. The number before the letter A such as 13A indicates the length of a wooden crib test fire (1.3 metres in this case) successfully extinguished under rigorous test conditions. In any event, a sensible approach is to cut off the power supply to any area where a fire occurs. Fire Extinguisher Ratings. The Underwriters Laboratories (UL) is a renowned third-party testing facility for public safety. © 2021 Fire and Safety Centre, all rights reserved. The LPCB approval on this AFFF fire extinguisher boasts high fire ratings. But deciding on the right fire extinguisher can be confusing. The number in front of the A, B, or C indicates the rating size of fire the unit can extinguish. Fire extinguishers are usually fitted in buildings at an easily accessible location, such as against a wall in a high-traffic area. Most fire extinguishers have a fire Rating printed on the canister. Class A rating fire extinguishers are often water-based, and are highly effective in extinguishing burning materials found or stored in an office or warehouse, for example. Fire Extinguisher Ratings Class A Extinguishers will put out fires in ordinary combustibles, such as wood and paper. The average office can be covered by a water extinguisher (for Class A solid combustibles) … The 4-A extinguisher holds 4 gallons of water and is, thus, expected to put out twice as much fire as a 2-A extinguisher holding 2 gallons of water. Read on to learn more. The fire rating of the particular extinguisher is indicated by a number and letter, e.g. The rating on the extinguisher tells all the relative quantity of water which can extinguish the size fire that this particular extinguisher is capable of. This code, for example 13A/55B, defines the Class (or type) of fire and the size of fire this type of fire extinguisher is capable of extinguishing. Fire Extinguisher Servicing. The UL rating is broken down into Class A and Class B:C ratings. To ensure you buy the right type and size for the application you have in mind, learn more about fire extinguisher classes and size ratings. 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