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Fire Extinguishers FAQ

It’s important to know where the fire extinguishers in your building or home are located so you’ll be prepared in the event of a fire. Below, you’ll find some of the most commonly asked questions we get from customers who are buying fire extinguishers for the first time or are simply interested in learning more about fire safety. We are a Grand Rapids fire protection company that takes pride empowering customers through fire safety tips.

  • How do I use a fire extinguisher?

The easy way to remember how to use a fire extinguisher is through the acronym PASS.

Pull the pin.

Aim the nozzle at the base of the fire.

Squeeze the pin slowly.

Sweep back and forth to put out flames.

To avoid getting trapped, make sure you keep your back to an escape route should the fire get too big to put out. Remember that fire extinguishers are only effective against small fires. If the flames are taller than you, you need to quickly exit the building and call 911.

  • Why do fire extinguishers work?

A fire needs three things to thrive: heat, fuel, and oxygen. The powder or foam that comes out of the fire extinguisher is specially formulated to smother fire and cut off its oxygen supply. The fire will go out once there is no more oxygen left to fuel it.

  • Do fire extinguishers need maintenance?

Yes, your fire extinguisher will need to be inspected and given regular maintenance from a fire protection contractor. A contractor will be able to catch any safety issues during fire extinguisher inspection. Fire extinguishers must be inspected according to industry safety standards and the maintenance guidelines for that specific type of fire safety device.

  • Where can I buy fire extinguishers?

You can buy fire extinguishers from any reputable fire and security system company. Many of these companies also offer fire extinguisher recharging services so you can feel assured that your fire extinguisher will work properly when you need it.

  • When are fire extinguishers not useful?

The general rule of thumb is to use fire extinguishers when the flames are shorter than you. If the flames are taller than you, you’ll need to quickly exit the building and call 911. Fire extinguishers were designed to put out small fires as soon as they broke out. They are not equipped to handle large fires. Leave that to the firefighters.

  • Why do fire extinguishers expire?

Fire extinguishers expire for several reasons. For example, the seal on the neck of the fire extinguisher can weaken over time and leak. Fire extinguishers are not effective at putting out fires once they lose pressure. This is why it’s important to have your fire extinguisher inspected and up-to-code. The expiration date on the fire extinguisher shouldn’t be the only thing you trust.

Fire Pros is a fire protection company that’s dedicated to keeping customers safe with high-quality fire extinguishers. We are proud to serve customers in Grand Rapids. If you are interested in buying our fire extinguishers or other fire safety products, give us a call at 800-968-2871.

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