If you want to protect your home from fires, purchasing a fire extinguisher is one of the best ways to do that. In fact, it’s a good idea to have multiple. But keep in mind that the overwhelming majority of house fires start in the kitchen. For this reason, no kitchen should be considered safe without a fire extinguisher nearby. But just owning one isn’t enough; you have to know how to use it, too. Thankfully, that’s pretty simple. Today, we’ll be reviewing how to properly use a fire extinguisher.
Have an Evacuation Route
You might be thinking that having an escape route isn’t part of using a fire extinguisher. But fires can get out of control fast, and you should always think about plan B before using one. Be sure to identify an escape route, such as a door or window, in case the fire extinguisher doesn’t do the trick. Also, if you have any loved ones indoors, you should alert them to the fire immediately so they have time to plan an evacuation, too.
Pull the Pin
This is really a simple step, but it merits its own section because, without it, the fire extinguisher will not function. In times of stress, it can be challenging to think clearly and remember this step. The pin will look like a loop you can fit your finger through on the handle of the extinguisher. They are made of metal and will have what resembles a zip tie attached to them. Simply pull, and you’re good to go.
Now it’s time to let the fire extinguisher do what it does best—extinguishing. Make sure you aim toward the bottom of the fire, as this way the foam will put out the flames faster. To discharge, squeeze the handles. Move the flow in a sweeping motion from left to right, until you’re confident that the danger has passed. Still, it’s your best practice in this scenario to call the fire department. They will be able to confirm that the fire has been extinguished and that your home is safe.
Things to Remember
Now that we’ve covered how to use a fire extinguisher, let’s go over a few more things that you should remember about them. Be sure that absolutely everyone in your household knows where the extinguishers are located and how to use them. Also, remember that fire extinguishers don’t last forever. If you bought yours when you moved in fifteen years ago, it almost certainly needs to be replaced. There should be a label on the bottom indicating the manufacturing date. As a final precaution, have a specialist check out your home every year, during which time they can make sure your extinguisher is in working order.
Commercial and Residential Fire Prevention from Judd Fire Protection
If you want to ensure your home and business are safe throughout the year, trust Judd Fire Protection, LLC. We have over two decades of experience designing, installing, inspecting, and repairing residential and commercial fire protection systems. We serve clients throughout Maryland, Pennsylvania, Washington, D.C., Virginia, and West Virginia. If you are interested in finding out more about our services and protecting your home and business, give us a call at 410-871-3480 or contact us online. For more fire safety tips, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.