The fire has been one of the most crucial discoveries in human history. It is the part that played a considerable part in the evolution of raw meat-eating early man to the civilized citizens you see today.
It is also the discovery that became the base of some of the most used technologies, including thermal plants, boiler, and automotive. However, like every other powerful, this fire also came with some drawbacks like uncontrollability.
Its properties also made it very difficult to predict or contain it, which made it very risky. The thing can practically burn a whole block in just a few seconds. No way any company or home is ready to take that risk, and that’s where the fire extinguishers came to play.
Based on the study of the basic nature of fires, these inventions help you to break the contact between air, fuel, and the agent generating the temperature for igniting the fire. Filled with powder or liquid-based compounds, these canisters enabled you to control the fire and prevent it from spreading. So, if you are a concerned homeowner who would like to keep his family secure, there is no way to deny the need for a fire extinguisher in your home.
But, how can you select the best fire extinguisher for a home that fits your requirement without harming your indoor environment or your pocket? Considering the number of manufacturers and the types of these fire extinguishers in the market, it won’t be an easy task.
Well, lucky for you, you don’t have to go through a whole set of videos or lengthy articles for this minor task. The following guide will introduce you to the aspect that decides the fire extinguisher you should buy. Read it, and you will know exactly what to look for in your fire extinguisher canister.
Top 5 Fire Extinguishers For Home
|Top 5||Editors Rating||Check Price|
|4.5 Stars||Check Price|
|4.7 Stars||Check Price|
|First Alert Professional Fire Extinguisher PRO5||4.5 Stars||Check Price|
|Kidde FA110 Multi Purpose Fire Extinguisher||3.5 Stars||Check Price|
|AFO Fire Ball||3.5 Stars||Check Price|
First Alert’s Standard Home Fire Extinguisher comes with a UL rating of 1A:10B:C. A UL rating gives an indication of the type of fires the product can tackle and the numbers associated with them give an estimate of the area. So a UL rating of 1A:10B:C for this product makes it capable of combating fires resulting from paper, wood, trash, oil, and electricity. It has a metal construction including the valve and handles which are easy to use.
Having lower numbers associated with those UL ratings means they can’t cover larger fires and are restricted to smaller households. A minimum UL rating of 2A:10B;C is needed for it to be effective in a standard household or office.
The unit comes with a mounting bracket to keep it secure and can be recharged once used.
The product comes with a 10-year limited warranty.
- UL Rating 1A:10B:C
- Product Dimensions: 3.3 x 3.3 x 14.3 inches
First Alert’s Tundra Fire Extinguishing Aerosol Spray is easy to use and has a discharge time 4 times that of a regular extinguisher resulting in a fire-fighting time for up to 32 seconds.
It has been tested to meet the requirements of UL 711, UL 711A and KOFEIC 0108 and can put out household fires caused by paper, fabric, wood, oils and electrical devices.
Using Tundra Aerosol Spray is as simple as pointing and spraying with comfortable clean up post use. But in the dark, it could be difficult to see the opening slot on the nozzle and could accidentally spray over yourself as there is no label to indicate spraying side.
The product comes with a 4-year limited warranty.
- 32 seconds of fire-fighting time
- Product Dimensions: 13.5 x 8.5 x 5 inches
First Alert’s PRO5 Fire Extinguisher is UL rated 3A:40B:C exceeding the minimum requirement and making it ideal for use in homes, small businesses and offices. Its UL rating is well over the minimum allows it to be very effective in dealing with fires in fairly large households or businesses or offices.
It features a commercial-grade metal valve and trigger and instructions for use on the metal body. The instruction labels are chemical and water-proof preventing deterioration. The gauge is color-coded and provides accurate readings ensuring the user knows when it’s ready for use. It has a safety pin to prevent tampering or accidental release.
The product comes with a 12-year limited warranty.
- UL Rating 3A:40B:C
- Product Dimensions: 4.6 X 4.6 X 16 inches.
- Weight: 9lbs
Kidde Multipurpose Fire Extinguisher highlights a UL rating of 1A:10B:C making it effective against most household fires.
The unit is an all-metal assembly and has a pressure gauge that displays the status of use at glance.
The metal body has instruction labels showing the step-by-step procedure. It uses a safety pin that’s easy to pull and has a lightweight making its use easy for anyone. The safety pin is rust-resistant making it easy to pull on each use.
The product comes with a 6-year warranty.
- UL Rating 1A:10B:C
- Product Dimensions: 3.2 X 6.4 X 13.8 inches
AFO Fire Ball is a fire suppressant compacted within the structure of a ball. The ball weighs less than 3 pounds and requires no prior training to use. It’s as simple as throwing the ball over the fire. Upon landing it emits a high pitched alarm and within 3-5 seconds, the ball releases non-toxic chemicals to suppress the fire and contain it within a radius ranging from 86-107 sq ft.
The Fire Ball is suitable to combat combustible items falling in the A(paper, wood, fabric), B(oils) or C(electrical equipment) classes and can easily be kept in your kitchen or be carried to a camp trip due to its compact shape and lightweight enhancing its portability.
- Weight: 2.87 lbs
Fire Extinguisher For Home Buying Guide
Types of Extinguisher
The conditions and the fuel causing the fire have a massive role in the extinguisher type you will need for it. For instance, if the fire occurs near a live electrical appliance, you cannot employ a wet type extinguisher. Therefore, the first thing you need to decide while choosing the best fire extinguisher for home is the extinguisher types. The common types you will find in the market are:
Water Extinguisher: This type is the most cost-effective extinguisher that uses water jet or sprays to extinguish a fire. This extinguisher can help you to extinguish the fire, and cooling the material to prevent it from spreading. However, it is not ideal for electrical and oil-fueled fire. Another thing you need to consider is that water soaks the object so it can get messy.
Foam Extinguisher: The foam type extinguisher consists of a thick liquid that converts into foam and prevents direct contact of the fuel with fire. The foam is light and works perfectly with oil and solid-fueled fires. The foam extinguisher is the best fire extinguisher for home sections like storage rooms and kitchens.
Powder Extinguisher: The powder extinguisher is a dry type extinguisher that is efficient for almost every fire type. It can form a thick layer upon liquid or solids to prevent the ignition of the objects. Being a semi-gas type extinguisher, it even works for fires caused by gases like propane, methane, and more.
Carbon Dioxide Extinguisher: The CO2 extinguisher is amongst the most expensive fire extinguisher that works best for electrical fires. It is the best fire extinguisher for home as it never leaves any residue after the fire. Another good thing about this extinguisher is that it can also deal with petrol or paraffin fueled fires by cutting their oxygen contact.
Wet Chemical Extinguisher: The wet chemical extinguisher is exclusively developed for liquid-fueled fires. It can help you to prevent fires caused by cooking oils, fats, olive oils, and many more. It creates a soap-like layer that is even effective against solid-fueled fires. This variant is the best home fire extinguisher for kitchens and garages that are the main hub for oil-based fires.
Factors to look for in an Extinguisher
Sizes: The fire extinguisher canister comes in various sizes and shapes. They can weigh anywhere from mere a few ounces to several pounds. Having a heavy canister may be good as it will contain more volume of extinguisher, but it will make it difficult to store and use it. The lighter canisters will have less content, but they will be lighter and more manageable. Even your young ones will be able to use it. Therefore, consider the weight of the cylinder while buying it. The best plan here is to choose the size that suits the youngest member of your family. As for the quantity, you can purchase multiple cylinders to counter it. Besides, multiple cylinders would cover more points, making the extinguishers more accessible.
Shelf Life: Home fires may be destructive, but they are very uncommon. It’s possible that the fire extinguisher that you buy may not even get used for years after installation. Therefore, the best fire extinguisher for a home will be the canister that can offer a prolonged shelf life. There are extinguishers available with a life of anywhere from 3 to 12 years, depending on their type of manufacturers that you can buy. Going for a shorter life would prevent initial charges, but it will be more frequent, while the longer shelf life would mean more initial investment. Unless you have a large house and a very high capital, try to find a central point that can balance extinguisher life and cost.
Refills: once the canister of fire extinguisher gets utilized or expired, you need to get it recharged. Now, there are two ways for this part. You can either buy a new canister or get the previous one refilled. Both refilling methods have their pros and cons that you need to consider before making a final decision. For instance, the refillable canister needs only a cartridge, so they will be very low in prices. On the other side, the replaceable variant will be expensive, but since you get new cans, there is no risk of a damaged canister. It is helpful to prevent scenarios like extinguisher leakage, or canister blasts. Another factor which makes replaceable canisters the best home fire extinguisher is their cost. They are slightly cheaper than other variants. The cost also ensures that you can upgrade the canister model every few years. The choice here may be cost-effecting, but there is no specific answer for which one to choose. It is all up to your wish.
Storage Pressure: for the gas or liquid to run at high speed from the fire canisters, the manufacturers often pressurize them. The outer shelling is strong enough to sustain this pressure and won’t get affected or damaged due to it under standard conditions. However, it is a risk under high temperature, moisture, and atomic pressure. For instance, if your canister sits close to a gas stove, it may get hot, which means the air inside it will expand and can result in leakage or damage. Therefore, you have to check the pressure of the canister before buying it for your home. The places like the living room that has moderate temperature will work fine with standard canister while the kitchen, storerooms, and boiler room will be fine with slightly decreased pressure.
Should I go for a large central fire extinguisher for home or a few small cans at multiple spots?
This decision is up to you, but it’s better to have more of them, especially for a large place. The central extinguisher may have the adequate quantity, but it will be heavy and less accessible from some parts of the house. The small cans are also good as they will limit the liquid or powder you use per fire, which in turn helps to manage the refilling costs.
Which fire extinguisher is best for the overall location?
The type of extinguisher will depend on the material in the place like for solids you need A type while for liquid fires, you need B types. However, if you are looking for a short solution, just go for an ABC type. It will be costly but will cover most fire types that can occur in your home.
What are the maintenance requirements of the fire extinguishers?
The maintenance of fire extinguishers is not much hassle. You will need to keep it clean and check its pressure every few days. The national fire protection association also recommends the users to keep an eye on canister damages and expire dates. It is also ideal to shake them once a month to prevent the powder from settling at the bottom.
Is it risky to use a fire extinguisher that has been dropped before?
Every best home fire extinguisher canister packs the strength to resist damage due to drops. However, it can have dents or damage that may not be visible to your eyes but can cause leaks or pressure drop issues. You should isolate the dropped canister and get it tested by a professional before using it again.