Fire Extinguisher Ratings Explained The importance of fire safety is oftentimes overlooked in favor of other everyday concerns. The ratings on fire extinguishers allows users to quickly identify the type of fire which an extinguisher will be most effective for. In another article we discussed the different types/classes of fires – the typical fuel source, common settings in which a certain class of fire is likely to occur, and the most effective type of fire extinguisher to combat the different classes of fires. These types of extinguishers also have no numerical rating, nor are they given a multipurpose rating - they … These mystical codes that are printed on all quality-approved fire extinguishers are there to indicate, not just the type of fire that particular extinguisher can combat, but also the size of the fire the contents can effectively put out. Fire extinguishers are classified by fire type. Step 3 This is divided into either Class A or Class B:C to indicate the relative extinguishing effectiveness of the extinguisher. 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. They are for fires that involve combustible metals, such as magnesium, titanium, potassium and sodium. Need to speak to someone?Simply call 01724 281044/277479. A quick review: Class A: Wood, paper, cloth, plastics, trash 2 litre foam fire extinguisher with LPCB Approval, Fire Safety Training and Risk Assessment Tools, Personal Protection Equipment and Clothing. Only AFFF foam, CO2 fire extinguishers and dry powder extinguishers are suitable for this application. 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. We are asked this question so many times. To achieve a Class “A” rating, the extinguisher must be capable of putting out the wood crib, wood panel and excelsior (shredded paper) tests. The letter part of the rating denotes what class of blaze this fire extinguisher is suitable for. The revised NFP… Fire Extinguisher Ratings. The number in front of the A, B, or C indicates the rating size of fire the unit can extinguish. FAQ Which extinguisher type is suitable for what fire? The A, B, C rating system defines the kinds of burning materials each fire extinguisher is designed to fight. Fire extinguishers come with different ratings dependent on the classification of fire they’re equipped for. Log in, Every fire extinguisher is colour-coded for easy reference, The extinguisher’s fire rating is shown both as a letter (such as A or B) and also as a pictogram. The number 13 comes from the number of sticks in each row as the example below. Class D fire extinguishers are commonly found in a chemical laboratory. In the UK, all quality fire extinguishers capable of extinguishing class A and B fires should carry a fire rating. Alloy Steel 5kg Co2 Fire Extinguisher for use tackling fires that involve flammable liquids or live electrical equipment. Click to download Fact Sheet. In addition, the fire extinguisher will also bear a pictogram if it is suitable for use on electrical equipment fires, The precise fire rating for Class A and B fires is expressed as a number and letter combination, such as 34B, There are clear operating instructions on how to use each types of extinguisher. What do fire extinguisher ratings mean? By the way, there is no such thing as a Class E rating in the UK – often thought to cover Electrical fires. A fire extinguisher’s rating consists of 2 parts: a number and a letter. The Underwriters Laboratories (UL) is a renowned third-party testing facility for public safety. Read on to learn more. If an extinguisher is described as “safe to use” on fires involving live electricity it means the suppressant is not inherently electrically conductive so you don’t risk electrocution when combating the fire. An extinguisher with a 10B rating can cover roughly 10 square feet, an extinguisher with a 20B rating can cover 20 square feet and so on. It is critical that you have training and have used them to ensure your safety and others around you. All fire extinguishers have ratings stamped on the faceplate of the appliance. This code, for example 13A/55B, defines the Class (or type) of fire and the size of fire this type of … Water-based Class A extinguishers may also have additives to make them more effective. 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. The number indicates the size of fire it can extinguish. The fire rating of the particular extinguisher is indicated by a number and letter, e.g. The first time you use a fire extinguisher shouldn’t be during emergencies. Most fire extinguishers have a fire Rating printed on the canister. 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. Smoke alarms and fire extinguishers are two essential pieces of fire safety equipment every home should have. Fire extinguishers that can put out a fire up to this size are rated 13A. Fire Extinguisher Ratings. 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. The best fire extinguisher for home use needs to be able to tackle a domestic fire, whatever it’s caused by, but keep safely out of sight when not in use. The test method involves adding water and fuel to circular metal trays (to specified sizes) before igniting and extinguishing the fire. It is vital that you use the correct fire extinguisher for the fire as using the wrong type of fire extinguisher could be life threatening. What the devil is size 13 you may ask? Only two classifications of fire include a number with the rating, Class A and B. The rechargeable fire extinguisher contains 4 pounds of multipurpose mono-ammonium phosphate dry chemical extinguishing agent. Fire Extinguisher Ratings. Atkinsons Way, Foxhills Industrial Estate, Scunthorpe, North Lincolnshire DN15 8QJ. For Class A fires the Size test is conducted using a fire comprising an open latticework of wooden sticks approx 40mm square x 500mm long piled 14 high. In any event, a sensible approach is to cut off the power supply to any area where a fire occurs. 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. ABC Dry Powder 2kg Having decided a 13A rating is appropriate you can then compare Ratings on the different types of extinguishing agents and available sizes to decide the most appropriate for your application. The LPCB approval on this AFFF fire extinguisher boasts high fire ratings. Most fire extinguishers have a fire Rating printed on the canister. When it’s time to purchase fire extinguishers for your business, you may be confused by the different letters and numbers on the label. 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. Thus in our 13A/55B example this extinguisher will combat a Class A fire (typically freely burning materials like wood, cloth and coal) of Size 13 or a Class B fire (flammable liquid) of size 55. A 175B rating uses 175 litres and so on. The discharge time is 13 to 15 seconds and it has a discharge range of 10-15 feet. For a more detailed explanation, read on…. But deciding on the right fire extinguisher can be confusing. It’s one of those few things that you buy but hope to never use. The extinguisher label also indicates the UL rating. It is rated for class A, B, and C fires. The rating number refers to the size of fire that can be extinguished under test conditions. B-rated fire extinguishers are numbered in 10s. The numbers and letters printed on fire extinguishers provide information about the tool. These are kept handy at places, namely fire points, in buildings, factories, public paces or transportation. Examples of available 13A rated extinguishers in our range, Water with Additive 3 litre Fire Extinguisher Buyer’s Guide. A dry chemical extinguisher with a 6A rating is equivalent to three 2 1/2 gallon water extinguishers. The number in front of the A, B, or C indicates the rating size of fire the unit can extinguish. The average office can be covered by a water extinguisher (for Class A solid combustibles) … 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. Two commonly used chemicals are effective in fighting these types of fires. Fire extinguishers are classified by fire type. Fire extinguishers in your house, garage, car and camper help you put out small fires quickly before they spread. Double check that your fire extinguisher contains a UL rating. 34B. If you need a 13A rating, anything higher such as 21A will even better. A 34A would extinguish a stack with 34 sticks and so on, so the higher the number the bigger the fire it can extinguish. The numerical rating for this class of fire extinguisher refers to the amount of water the fire extinguisher holds and the amount of fire it will extinguish. 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. This number has a different meaning for each class. Fire extinguishers are usually fitted in buildings at an easily accessible location, such as against a wall in a high-traffic area. In most cases, the rating is a combination of numbers and letters. Thus, a 4A will equal about five gallons of water. So for example, a water additive stored pressure extinguisher coded 13A will extinguish a Class A fire of freely burning combustibles of size 13. Well it’s definitely not a shoe size, but a specific arrangement of combustibles used to test the extinguisher. 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. The UL rating is broken down into Class A and Class B:C ratings. An ABC Fire Extinguisher might have a UL Rating of 4-A:80-B:C. But what do these fire extinguisher ratings mean? 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. For an A rating, the number is an indication of water equivalency, with each A being the same as 1 1/4 gallons of water. Many fires are caused by electrical faults which in consequence ignite other flammables. 3 litre Water Additive Fire Extinguisher provides environmentally friendly and non-corrosive method of tackling Class A fires. The numbers in the UL Rating are a relative measurement of how effective a given extinguisher is at fighting certain classes of fires, based on proper fire extinguisher … 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. The rating of a fire extinguisher is designed to help users understand the class and size of a fire in which the extinguisher is meant to be used. Fire extinguishers are portable devices used to extinguish small fires or reduce their destruction before firefighters arrive at the scene.