What does my fire extinguisher weigh?

May 14, 2009

Fires are classified based on their ratings and their classes.

There are three types of classes: Class A, Class B, and Class C:

  • Class A: For fires involving flammable liquids such as wood, cloth, paper, rubber and plastics. These fires are typical in commercial and home settings. 
  • Class B: For fires involving flammable liquids such as gasoline, oil, solvents and oilbased paint. These fires often spread rapidly and can re-flash after the flames have been extinguished if they are not properly suppressed. 
  • Class C: For fires involving energized electrical equipment such as wiring, fuse boxes, circuit breakers, machinery and appliances. These can be caused by a spark, power surge, or a short circuit, and often occur in locations that may be difficult to see or reach.

For each fire extinguisher, there will be a number followed by a letter that will determine its classification. The letter indicates which class of fire it is designed to extinguish and the number indicates the power of the extinguisher. Therefore, the higher the number of the fire extinguisher's classification, the more power that extinguisher will have. Also, as the extinguisher's rating increases, the weight of the extinguisher will also increase. 

An extinguisher's rating is not based on the size of the extinguisher, but instead is a measure of the extinguisher's fire-fighting capability. For example, an extinguisher rated 3-A is three times more powerful against Class A fires than an extinguisher rated 1-A.

Please refer to the table below to determine your extinguisher's weight:

2 B:C extinguisher is a 1.5lbs extinguisher
5 B:C extinguisher    is a 2 lbs extinguisher
10 B:C extinguisher is a 2.9lbs extinguisher
1 A:2 B:C extinguisher is a 2.5lbs extinguisher
2 A:10 B:C extinguisher is a 4 lbs extinguisher
3 A:40 B:C extinguisher is a 5lbs extinguisher
4 A:60 B:C extinguisher is a 10lbs extinguisher
10 A:80 B:C extinguisher is a 20 lbs extinguisher