Fire extinguishers are made to put out the different types of fires from class A to class E.
In Kenya we have five common types of fire extinguishers;
The carbon dioxide extinguisher: used to put out electrical fires which as class E fires, however it can also be used for class B fires. The good thing with carbon dioxide extinguishers is that they don’t leave residue like foam. Carbon dioxide (CO) extinguishers come in a black label.
The foam extinguisher: usually comes in a cream label and puts out class A, fire by solid materials and B fires, which are petroleum products e.g. petrol, diesel and paraffin. It seals the surface of the liquid (or solid) which starves the fire of oxygen causing it to die.
The powder extinguisher: e.g. monnex powder, these blue label extinguishers quench class A, solid material, B, flammable petroleum liquids and C, gas fires. The down side of these extinguishers is that they create loss of visibility and may create breathing problems; because of this they cannot be used in buildings unless there is no alternative.
The water extinguisher: this is the most commonly used as they are the cheapest, easily accessed and simplest to use. They put out class A, solid fires and usually have the red label
Apart from these the other not so common extinguishers used in this country are Clean agent extinguishers which include FE-36, Halon