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Make Sure You Have the Right Extinguisher — Know How to Read the Label!

November 8, 2013

Fire Extinguisher ClassYou may know what a Class A fire extinguisher is, as opposed to a Class B, C, D, or K (if you don’t click here), but what does it mean when the label says 2A:20B:C?

The numerical rating before letters A or B have to do with the size of fire that particular extinguisher was designed to handle. In the example above, you’ll notice no number in front of the C; this is because there is no numerical rating placed on C, D, and K extinguishers.

The number in front of the A refers to the amount of water the extinguisher is equal to; each unit representing 1.25 gallons. In the example above, this extinguisher has the same effectiveness as 2.5 gallons of water.

The number preceding the B indicates the area, in square feet, of the fire that extinguisher can handle. In this case, the extinguisher was designed to extinguish a fire up to 20ft x 20ft.

Article by: April LaRita Green

3 Comments leave one →
  1. November 8, 2013 2:34 pm

    This article was so interesting, I had no idea there were so many different kinds of fire extinguisher. Sending this article to my husband we own a mobile home park so he should know about all the different kinds for different reasons. Great Article

    • November 11, 2013 7:15 am

      Thanks Jill! I’m glad you found it helpful. Check back later this week for an article on how to properly operate a fire extinguisher.


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