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Fire Extinguishers Types, Classes and Chart

Fire Extinguisher Types Australia

There are 5 main types of fire extinguishers in Australia and choosing the right kind of fire extinguisher can be a confusing task because of the many fire extinguisher types available. You should be very mindful when choosing a fire extinguisher because each type is intended to put out a fire caused by different materials.

Water-Fire Extinguishers

They are also called Air Pressurized Water or APW fire extinguishers. These are only suitable for Class A fires, and must not be used for ones that involve electricity. They are not to be used for Class D fires or any other fires that include combustible liquid or gas.


Foam Fire Extinguishers

These can be used for Class A and Class B fires and would work well with quelling such incidents. They are not to be used for Class D fires as they still employ the use of water. However, they are a lot safer than water extinguishers if you accidentally use them on Class D fires.



Dry Chemical Powder Fire Extinguishers

They are considered to be very versatile among the others. They can work for Class A, Class B, and Class C fires. It has two types, the BE which has sodium bicarbonate and the ABE, with monoammonium phosphate. The use of this fire extinguisher should entail cleaning residue afterwards, as they have very corrosive properties.


CO2 Carbon Dioxide Fire Extinguishers

Of all the fire extinguisher types, this one is ideal for Class E fires which normally involve burning electrical appliances. It can also be used on Class B fires but it might not fully kill the fire afterwards.


A fire extinguisher comes in handy whenever an unexpected fire springs up. While one may find that all of them look the same, knowing the different fire extinguisher types would help one in identifying which to use on certain occasions.


Fire Classes

Knowing the type of material that is burning would help classify which of the fire extinguisher types would be appropriate to use. Class A objects would include solid materials such as paper, wood, and most plastics. Class B would have combustible and flammable liquids such as petrol, gasoline oil, and kerosene, among others. Combustible gases that are issued such as methane, butane, and propane would fall in Class C. Fires that involve metals are part of the Class D category. Those that were caused by electrical appliances, faulty wiring, circuit breakers, as well as outlets are of the Class E type. Cooking oil and fat as well as other kitchen cooking material, which are of the greasy kind, would be found under the Class F kind.

Class A fires – combustible materials: caused by flammable solids, such as wood, paper, and fabric

Class B fires – flammable liquids: such as petrol, turpentine or paint

Class C fires – flammable gases: like LPG, hydrogen, butane or methane

Class D fires – combustible metals: chemicals such as magnesium, aluminium or potassium

Class E fires – electrical equipment: once the electrical item is removed, the fire changes class

Class F fires – cooking oils: typically a chip-pan fire

Fire Extinguishers Chart


fire extinguisher chart

What are the 5 types of fire extinguishers in Australia?

There are 5 main types of fire extinguishers in Australia - Dry Chemical Powder, CO2 Carbon Dioxide, Wet Chemical, Foam and Water Fire Extinguishers.

What is ABE fire extinguisher?

Which extinguisher is used for electrical fire?

Carbon dioxide fire extinguishers used for?

Dry powder fire extinguisher used for?


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