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Tag: fire extinguisher

How to Know When to Recharge Your Fire Extinguisher

 

There’s no doubt that fire extinguishers are among the most essential tools in any fire safety plan. They’re often the first line of defense against fires – and their usage can prevent certain fires from becoming catastrophic – saving both lives and assets.

However, many people make the mistake of depending on the same old fire extinguishers they’ve had for a few years. They think that because they haven’t had to use them that they should be full and ready to go whenever needed. Unfortunately, that’s not the case.

Fire extinguishers need to be charged to operate correctly. Here are some ways you can stay ahead of this issue and make sure that your fire extinguishers will be ready when called upon.

Was your extinguisher recently used?

If the answer is ‘yes’ – then it’s time to get it recharged. If the answer is ‘no, it hasn’t been used in years’ – then you need to get it charged. Over time an extinguisher can leak pressure – so little you’d never notice it. And when it leaks air pressure, it also leaks chemicals from within the extinguisher. That’s bad if you need to fight a fire – it’s doubly bad if you lack both the chemicals and the air pressure to fight the fire.

Take the time to read this blog through, then call someone and get it inspected. Oh, and speaking of inspections…

Get your extinguishers inspected regularly

You should get your extinguishers inspected every year. Get a fire safety pro to come through, inspect them -and make sure everything is working as it should be. Fire extinguishers are incredibly durable, but it’s essential to be prepared in the rare event that they’re not. Professionals will also notice things you wouldn’t think or know how to look for. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.

Be on the lookout for problems

Things like low-pressure readings signify that you might need to get your extinguisher recharged. This would also apply if you can’t read operating instructions or notice that certain seals have been broken. Also – if your extinguisher has been tampered with in any way – It should immediately be replaced.

Beware of pressure gage issues

Anytime you notice little to no change in a pressure gauge over the span of a few months, you could potentially have an issue. Your unit could be overcharged or undercharged – and you’ll need to make sure that your extinguisher is within safe operational parameters.

If you have any questions about this or any other fire protection topic, don’t hesitate to contact Protegis Fire & Safety.

 

 

What To Ask A Fire Protection Company

Most of the time, we like to share blogs that give you free advice. Just some things that you don’t need to go out of your way to ask us about, or that if you did – would be wisdom that we’d give out for free. But occasionally, your problems or issues go beyond mere inquiry and seep into the area of ‘I need help!’ 

And when you have issues in your commercial space – you’ll clearly want to employ the help of a professional fire service company. But where do you start? What kinds of questions do you ask? 

If you seemingly know almost everything except where to start, then today’s blog is for you. Here are a few things you should ask any potential fire protection company before you hire them. Let’s jump right in! 

What services do you provide?

What kinds of fire protection systems you have or need will go a long way towards determining which fire protection company you go with. Some companies specialize in certain areas over others. Some only work with commercial businesses. Some only work with residential fire safety. Some dabble in both. 

So when you sit down for your first conversation, ask the company what they offer and what they feel they specialize in. Then, it’s simply a matter of inventorying the companies that have the capabilities to meet your needs the best. 

How much experience do you have?

The amount of experience a company has lets you know that the business you’re about to engage with has a long, extended track record. Bad businesses go away quickly, and the longer that business has been around, the more likely they are to be reputable and have some sort of calling card. 

What organizations and certifications do you belong to and have?

Being in the fire safety business isn’t just a matter of tacking up some fire extinguishers to the wall and sending an invoice. Believe it or not, it’s an ongoing, ever-evolving industry with new technology and new codes to grapple with all the time. To keep up, we like to join many organizations – like the NFPA, FSSA, and the NAFED. Long story short – it takes a lot of time, knowledge, and effort to be a leader in this field, and involvement in these sorts of organizations is a good sign that the company you’re potentially going to do business with is dedicated to their craft. 

Pricing

Let us say this in the clearest possible terms: Fire safety is not a joke and should never be taken lightly. Our company (and many others) emphasize quality and service. We all want a fair deal, but just because it’s cheap doesn’t mean it offers you the best value. 

Before selecting a fire protection company, be sure to consider all factors and make an informed decision. Be safe, and feel free to reach out to us anytime to discuss your life safety needs.

All About Class K Fire Extinguishers

One common blind spot that we encounter when dealing with our clients is that many of them are surprised to know that there are significant differences between different kinds of fire extinguishers. Most are surprised to learn that extinguishers aren’t some sort of universal tool.

The reality is that there are fire extinguishers of all sorts of shapes and sizes – but most important – the chemical mixtures inside them dictates what kinds of fires they can extinguish. Knowing the differences among extinguishers is important – specifically if you own a commercial space like a restaurant or kitchen. 

One of the more common types of fire extinguishers are called “Class K” extinguishers and you’ll see them in restaurants and commercial kitchens. But what do they do? What kinds of fires can they fight? That’s what we’re here to discuss today.

Here’s everything that you should know about Class K fire extinguishers. Let’s jump right in!

What’s A Class K Fire?

Class K fires are started by things like flammable cooking liquids like oil or grease. These are particularly volatile substances as they are capable of igniting and spreading quickly. They’re commonly seen in commercial kitchens, restaurants – but can also be found in places like food trucks, cafeterias and any place where food is sold en masse. If you own a business or have a business with one of these kinds of spaces, then you’ll want to make sure you have a Class K fire extinguisher equipped. 

So How Does The Class K Extinguisher Fight These Fires?

Class K extinguishers use special agents that simultaneously separate and absorb the hot elements of the fire – things like the fuel and the oxygen. Class K extinguishers are filled with a mixture of potassium based chemicals that mix in with cooking grease and create a blanket that not only cools the liquid, but also blocks oxygen, thereby extinguishing the fire. Don’t ever try to extinguish Class K fires with water as it’ll only make things worse. 

Is Your Kitchen Prepared For The Worst?

Along with having Class K extinguishers at the ready, you should also have some sort of fire suppression system installed by a licensed fire protection company. This makes sure there’s proper design, installation and inspections occurring. You should also train your employees in what to do if there’s ever an emergency – from clearing spaces to using the extinguishers themselves. And of course, prevention should always be top of mind so that employees learn how to avoid situations that lead to fires in the first place. 

Hopefully, these tips bring your fire safety needs into a little bit clearer focus. Whatever the needs are for your commercial kitchen, you can give us a call.

Fire Extinguisher Knowledge Base

Fire extinguishers are among the most effective and affordable means for protecting your property from fire damage. Many fires begin small, at a single location, and can often easily be suppressed using the appropriate type of fire extinguisher. This proactive response can save people and property from harm, or contain the fire until emergency response professionals arrive.

But there are many different types of fire extinguishers and Protegis Fire & Safety is here to provide you with information about each of them.

Water Extinguishers: Water is one of the most commonly used extinguishing agents for type A fires. You can recognize a water extinguisher by its large silver container. They are filled about two-thirds of the way with ordinary water, then pressurized with air. In some cases, detergents are added to the water to produce a foam. They stand about two to three feet tall and weigh approximately 25 pounds when full.

Water extinguishers are designed for Class A (wood, paper, cloth, and certain plastics) fires only.

CO2 – Carbon Dioxide Extinguishers: This type of extinguisher is filled with Carbon Dioxide (CO2), a non-flammable gas under extreme pressure. These extinguishers put out fires by displacing oxygen, or taking away the oxygen element of the fire triangle. Because of its high pressure, when you use this extinguisher pieces of dry ice shoot from the horn, which also has a cooling effect on the fire.

Multi-purpose – Dry Chemical Extinguishers: Dry chemical extinguishers put out fires by coating the fuel with a thin layer of fire retardant powder, separating the fuel from the oxygen. The powder also works to interrupt the chemical reaction, which makes these extinguishers extremely effective. They contain an extinguishing agent and use a compressed, non-flammable gas as a propellant.

Dry Chemical extinguishers will have a label indicating they may be used on class A, B, and/or C fires.

Class K – Wet Chemical Extinguishers for Kitchen Fires: Due to the higher heating rates of vegetable oils in commercial cooking appliances NFPA 10, Portable Fire Extinguishers, now includes a Class K rating for kitchen fires extinguishers which are now required to be installed in all applicable restaurant kitchens. Once a fire starts in a deep fryer, it cannot always be extinguished by traditional range hoods or Class B extinguishers.

These extinguishers will be found in commercial cooking operations such as restaurants, cafeterias, and other locations where food would be served.

Regular testing and inspection is the only way to be certain. Our technicians can perform a physical and visual inspection of the extinguisher and update the necessary documentation at the required regular intervals. Let our technicians evaluate your facility, including the type of fire hazards you may face, and recommend the right fire extinguisher solution for your operations.

Are You OSHA Compliant?

OSHA has strict guidelines on fire extinguisher training for employees. Protegis training helps you meet the requirements and, most importantly, keeps your employees safe and knowledgeable.

Why Extinguisher Training?

  • In the event of a fire, fire extinguishers can prevent injuries and minimize damage if employees are properly trained on their operation.
  • According to OSHA guidelines, employees are required to be trained to use fire extinguishers and industry safety procedures upon employment and annually thereafter. 
  • In fact, even insurance companies require employees to be trained in fire extinguisher usage.

Multiple Types of Fire Training Classes Available!

We offer live fire training (in a controlled environment) and BullEx simulated fire training for indoor training.

Click Below for More Information on Training Available.

Let Protegis help you stay safe and compliant. 
Explore our fire extinguisher training options today!

800.875.7200