Typically, a fire extinguisher is a portable device designed to extinguish fires. They are commonly fitted to motor vehicles, but they are also used in buildings and at public areas. They can be handheld, but they can also be wheeled or cart-mounted.
When an extinguisher is used, the user should aim the nozzle at the base of the fire. Sweep the nozzle back and forth, aiming for the lower part of the fire. Depending on the type of fire, it may be necessary to call for professional assistance. Once the fire is out, the person should exit the building or other area. It is also important to make sure that nothing is blocking access.
In some countries, fire extinguishers are required by law. The laws regarding the use of fire extinguishers vary widely by country, but in most jurisdictions, the law requires an extinguisher to be kept in a place where it is easily accessible.
A fire extinguisher is typically a metal container that contains chemicals or water. Depending on the type of fire, the extinguisher may be designed to be used on a fire that involves burning liquids, electrical equipment, or combustible metals. It may also be designed to put out a fire from the air.
The first extinguisher type to be introduced in the United States was the Met-L-X. This type of extinguisher used a sodium bicarbonate chemical, which was moisture-resistant. The chemical was used on class A fires, which involved ordinary materials that could easily burn. The chemical could also be used on class B fires, which involved flammable liquids or combustible gases.
Sodium bicarbonate was later modified and a special type of dry chemical was developed. This type of dry chemical is effective against class A, B, and C fires. The chemical is also effective against flammable gases, but it is ineffective against class C fires, which involve combustible liquids.
Another type of dry chemical is monoammonium phosphate, also known as ABC. This chemical is an effective agent for class A, B, and C fires, but it is more corrosive than other dry chemical agents. The chemical can also generate carbon dioxide and other gases. However, it should not be used in combination with other dry chemical agents. The chemical will generate CO2, but the carbon dioxide will not damage electrical equipment. In addition, the chemical will not short-circuit.
Another type of fire extinguisher is the cartridge-operated type. These types are available in both dry powder and carbon dioxide types. The advantage of the cartridge-operated type is that the extinguisher can be recharged easily. In addition, it is less expensive than disposable extinguishers. However, it does not have the same level of monitoring as the automatic type.
An automatic extinguisher is typically designed for fires in industrial settings. They are triggered by heat, which causes the extinguishing agent to release at a high pressure. Typically, these extinguishers have a label that indicates the type of fire and the numerical rating, which indicates the amount of water or chemical contained in the extinguisher.