There are several types of fire extinguishers, but which one do you use when?
Simply put, there are 2 different types of fire extinguishers suitable for home or office use, namely:
• Powder extinguishers;
• Foam extinguishers.
But which fire extinguisher do you need now? As always, each type has advantages and disadvantages.
A powder extinguisher works - as the name suggests - by means of an extinguishing powder. This powder smothers certain chemical processes of combustion in the onset and this makes it efficient in stopping the fire. The powder is effective for use involving solids such as: wood, gases and liquids.
A powder extinguisher is resistant to differences in temperature, reliable and extinguishes well. Hence, it is also one of the most popular fire extinguishers. However, there are disadvantages to this form of extinguishing. The reason is that the powder can cause a lot of damage, which subsequently causes the powder to have a minimal cooling effect.
An alternative to the powder extinguisher is the so-called foam extinguisher. The foam extinguisher sprays a firefighting foam on the stirring fire, with the result that no further oxygen is added. This will stop the fire and add a cooling effect. A foam extinguisher quenches fires involving solids and liquids.
By extinguishing using foam, you cause less collateral damage. Even though extinguishing takes time, the operation is simple and its cooling effect lowers the risk of reignition. A disadvantage is that foam extinguishers are not suitable for extinguishing gas fires (C). Furthermore, they are not frost-resistant and more expensive than powder extinguishers.
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