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What Kind of Fire Extinguishers Are Required in a Commercial Building?

Posted on: May 15, 2017

Determining which type of fire extinguisher is right for your building is a life-saving decision. The fire extinguisher parameters for your New Jersey, Delaware, or Philadelphia location will depend upon the hazard level and square footage of the building. Each type of extinguisher is created for a specific type of fire and is generally only suited for one or a few different circumstances.

If you are unsure of which type of extinguisher you require, or need help outfitting your building with proper extinguishers, the professionals at Confires are here to help. We have over 30 years of experience in fire protection services in NJ, DE, and PA, and can offer expert guidance on fire extinguishers and more.

What is the best type of extinguisher for my building?

The most important trait of any fire extinguisher is that it is functional. This means checking monthly that the gauge remains in the green, and annually scheduling maintenance with Confires to ensure it is in good condition.

You also need to ensure that your extinguisher is within reach (read about proper physical set-up here) and that enough of your staff is trained in how to use the extinguisher if necessary. If you follow all of these steps, your building will be readily prepared in the face of an emergency.

  • ABC Dry Chemical: These multi-purpose fire extinguishers can be used on class A, B, and C fires. They utilize a special powder which helps put out fires started by common combustible solid objects, burning gases and liquids, and electrical fires. The agent, however, is corrosive and should be cleaned up as soon as possible after being discharged. ABC extinguishers are great in an office environment.
  • Water Mist: Pressurized water extinguishers are a good option for environments with sensitive equipment, such as hospitals. While hospitals will generally have the same types of fires as office buildings, the volume of valuable equipment makes the corrosive ABC agent an undesirable choice. A water extinguisher can safely eliminate fire without damaging equipment.
  • Class K Wet Chemical: Wet chemical extinguishers work on common cooking combustibles, making them well-suited to commercial kitchens. Grease fires cannot be extinguished with the ABC agent simply because they are more aggressive and harder to control. A class K extinguisher will get the job done in a kitchen setting.
  • Carbon Dioxide: CO2 fire extinguishers work to remove the oxygen and heat from a fire with a cold discharge. These extinguishers can be used on class B and C fires. CO2 extinguishers can work well in laboratories, but cannot be used on fires caused by metals.
  • Metal/Sand: These extinguishers often use a sodium chloride agent to work to smother the fire. Metal/sand extinguishers work on class D fires, which are caused by metals such as sodium, magnesium, or titanium. As such, metal/sand extinguishers are also well-suited to laboratory settings where these metals may be in use.

Schedule Fire Extinguisher Services

If your New Jersey, Delaware, or Philadelphia requires fire extinguisher outfitting or maintenance, you can count on Confires to get the job done. Our team of experts will ensure the safety and protection of your building. We offer:

To schedule services, contact Confires online or by phone at 888-228-0917.

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