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Old 05-31-2015, 07:29 AM   #1
AlfinVA
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Default Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher Mess?

Adds for fire extinguishers that are alternatives to the dry chemical type all claim how difficult it is to clean up the powder mess in an engine compartment after they are used. Is the claim accurate? I know of no one that has had to use either. I was under the impression you could hose out the residual dry chemical.
What is your experience or what is your advice?
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Old 05-31-2015, 09:21 AM   #2
pat in Santa Cruz
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Default Re: Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher Mess?

We had an engine fire once at a place I worked. The dry extinguisher put it out pronto. There was powder all over the shop, not just the engine. It took some sweeping, dusting, vacuuming, washing and a wipe down with a wet rag to clean it up. But, given the alternative of an out of control fire, it was worth it. A wet chemical extinguisher would probably make a different kind of mess, but it would still have to be cleaned up. It might not drift all over the shop like the dry chemical did, though.
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Old 05-31-2015, 09:25 AM   #3
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Default Re: Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher Mess?

cleaning up a dry chemical use isn't so bad in the engine compartment, but in the interior it is a completely different matter. As a FF for many years I have seen a lot of people use them to good effect to put out a fire, but they leave a mess. CO2, Halon and others would be my choice, and with that said I have read the ads in Hemmings about the ones now offered and was considering getting a few for my vehicles. Here is one brand that I have been considering www.firefightproducts.com I know from experience that it is better to have one available than not have one, and not only in your car but your house and garage as well.
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Old 05-31-2015, 09:30 AM   #4
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Default Re: Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher Mess?

yea at work we've had to use them a few times. once was in an electrical cabinet and it works very well but does leave a mess. wet rags and shopvac with good filter works well.
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Old 05-31-2015, 09:46 AM   #5
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Default Re: Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher Mess?

Put out a gas fire on an injected Cadillac, while it was running, with NO AIR FILTER!! It sucked in powder, piled up in the combustion chambers, & it LURCHED to a stop!!! With plugs out & a blow gun with a long 1/8" tube on it, FINALLY got it cleared out & running!! It even POOFED white powder out the KZHAUST PIPE!!! I was afraid that stuff might be ABRASIVE & might eat up the rings, BUT, it ran O.K.
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Old 05-31-2015, 10:02 AM   #6
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Default Re: Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher Mess?

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Another repetitive thread BUT!!!!!! they have there good points. They are good for Baby-Boomers with the Mother-of-All-Memory-Loss Syndrome. I keep forgetting to buy a Non-Chemical Fire Extinguisher.
Thanks for the reminder................again!!! I hope to buy one tomorrow while out.....again.
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Old 05-31-2015, 10:13 AM   #7
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Default Re: Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher Mess?

The SS45 at the site above appears to be a good one. Where have any of you guys mounted or kept one in your "A"? You want to be able to get to it fast!
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Old 05-31-2015, 10:14 AM   #8
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Default Re: Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher Mess?

Halon-Only way to go,if you need one no mess!!
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Old 05-31-2015, 10:16 AM   #9
Kurt in NJ
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Default Re: Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher Mess?

At the shop there is a 5lb CO2 extinguisher for "problems", and several dry chemical ones if needed

At my shop I have a 5lb Co2 on the welder cart, a 20 lb Co2 next to the lift and dry chemical ones by every light switch

At home there is a halon in the kitchen by the back door (can decide to fight or flight), in the A I have halon in a leather sling held by the seat

the dry chemical usually leaves a bigger mess and it seems to be somewhat corrosive when left in place getting damp ---but they do put out the fire
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Old 05-31-2015, 10:33 AM   #10
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Default Re: Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher Mess?

I have a 5 lb Halon mounted in the package tray of my Sport Coupe. Having had a fire in my '56 Corvette on the track years ago, I wanted it where I could get at it without removing my seat belt or getting out of the car first. And yes, the dry powder I had at the time made a mess on the engine.
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Old 05-31-2015, 02:15 PM   #11
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Default Re: Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher Mess?

My theory is, if I have a fire I want out FIRST.
Then I will assess whether to run or fight.
I have a 5 lb. Co2 mounted on the floor behind the driver seat.
I can get it without moving the seat.
In the shop there is either a 10 lb. Halon or a 10 lb. Co2 by every door (5). We keep one spare 5 lb. Co2 in the lunch room that is painted green and only used to quick cool beer.
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Old 05-31-2015, 04:06 PM   #12
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Default Re: Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher Mess?

A friend had their vintage car catch fire recently and luckily had a fire extinguisher on board.
This proved inadequate but fortunately a couple of other people rushed up with their extinguisher and the car was saved.
Unfortunately, each was a different type and hosing down caused a reaction that corroded aluminium components. It appears that each type of extinguisher requires a different method of removing the residue. An extensive article was written about it and could be posted if required?
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Old 05-31-2015, 05:05 PM   #13
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Default Re: Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher Mess?

Quote:
Originally Posted by gary wa View Post
halon-only way to go,if you need one no mess!!
x 2
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Old 06-01-2015, 10:32 AM   #14
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Default Re: Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher Mess?

Quote:
Originally Posted by CarlG View Post
x 2
Hasn't HALON been banned by the EPA ?
It is the perfect solution. There is no residue to clean up. It is total gas.
If you get an engine fire, keep your car running. You might suck all the flames down into the combustion chamber, where it will do no harm.
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Old 06-01-2015, 12:52 PM   #15
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Default Re: Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher Mess?

While Halon is no longer being produced, plenty of Halon extinguishers are still available using reclaimed Halon. Halatron is a substitute that is just as effective and is OK with EPA.
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Old 06-01-2015, 01:01 PM   #16
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Default Re: Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher Mess?

If it worked well, rest assure EPA will take it off of the market.

Gloves, wool socks, and scarves are next because of opposing our Global Warming Theory.
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Old 06-02-2015, 01:14 AM   #17
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Default Re: Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher Mess?

many years ago i took a girl to the drive in movies in my model A
i had a dry powder extinquisher laying on the rear floor
were were getting in the rear seat and
she stepped on it and it went off squirting up her dress
really made a mess,but fun to clean up LOL
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Old 06-02-2015, 06:19 AM   #18
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Default Re: Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher Mess?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mot View Post
many years ago i took a girl to the drive in movies in my model A
i had a dry powder extinquisher laying on the rear floor
were were getting in the rear seat and
she stepped on it and it went off squirting up her dress
really made a mess,but fun to clean up LOL
So, your fire extinguisher STARTED the fire, instead of extinguishing it.
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Old 06-02-2015, 05:23 PM   #19
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Default Re: Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher Mess?

Several handfuls of dirt from a freshly dug flower bed will put out a carburetor fire on a 1966 IH pickup, and don't ask me how I know, but clean-up was hell. I had to rebuild it AGAIN!

Of course I had a fire extinguisher, but squeezed the trigger BEFORE I got it aimed and it ran out before it put the fire out. Two lessons learned. AIM carefully, just like your Daddy taught you and don't set the float so high.
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Old 06-02-2015, 05:26 PM   #20
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Default Re: Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher Mess?

Thanks for bumping the thread....again. Hopefully I'll remember next time I'm out to get one because I forgot it again yesterday and the day before.
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