Wary of an engine overheat or accidentally burning your tires during the trail? Taking an off-road fire extinguisher on a 4×4 expedition may be the least of your priorities but it’s a necessary step to ensuring your vehicles remain useful and you’re still alive. Check out other safety items you should bring, too.
In this article, we help you pick which off-road fire extinguishers are the most effective when things heat up and become lethal in the open.
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What Is an Off-road Fire Extinguisher?
In simple terms, a fire extinguisher “eats” flames before they even spread at a dangerous rate, to prevent further property damage and other casualties.
If you’re a true-blue 4x4er, it will usually take you 3-5 years or more to invest in 4×4 modifications, from gearbox transfer case to possible engine rebuilds, just to make your vehicles close to invincible on varying terrains.
One way to protect such investments is to carry an off-road fire extinguisher which will help you quickly put out flames from faulty electrical wiring or choked exhaust, especially when you’re alone in an unknown land.
The Mystery Behind UL
Whenever you buy an off-road fire extinguisher, you’ll notice a UL marking on its bottle, which stands for Underwriters Laboratories.
It’s a non-profit organization that determines which products pass the safety standards via a series of tests that’s also in a way similar to European Conformity (CE) marking.
If you’re curious of what underwriters are, they are a group of people who make themselves accountable to certain risk types, provided they will receive a charge or compensation amount in return.
Purpose of the Alphanumeric Rating
If you often get confused of an off-road fire extinguisher’s union of letters and numbers in its small section, it’s called the alphanumeric rating.
As a general rule, the letter tells the fire category it can be used against. On the other hand, the number that precedes it tells the amount of fire coverage it can subdue.
Consider 2B as a basic example where B means it’s intended for a fire from petroleum gas, and it has an extinguishing capacity that’s equal to 2 and 1/2 gallons of spray foam.
The shocking truth is you can’t just use an off-road fire extinguisher on anything that’s flaming. This is because fire has five categories and they will only subside according to an off-road fire extinguisher component that’s suitable for them.
Category A fire is something that comes from burning wood and clothes. It’s the easiest to subdue of all the fire categories because it doesn’t produce much ignition vapor.
And even if it does, you can quickly cool it down by spraying it with water, until it’s eventually gone.
Category B fire is one that comes from petroleum or liquid gas. Putting out such a fire requires more effort than category A because it doesn’t subside once it reaches its flash point or lowest temperature level, even if you spray it with water.
To extinguish it, you need a spray foam to prevent it from eating oxygen which keeps it alive.
Category C fire’s source is a pure gas, something that’s ever-present in gas stoves; hence, in US, this category covers a flame that comes from electric appliances. But bear in mind that gas and electricity has distinct qualities.
To either stop or contain it at a certain level, you should use an off-road fire extinguisher which has a halon or carbon dioxide component.
Category D fire comes from flammable metals like magnesium, uranium and other similar types. Subduing it is difficult because it can easily spread to other items upon contact.
The only way to stop it is using a powder extinguisher because water will only ignite it further, while its combination with carbon dioxide releases a poisonous fume.
Category F or K
Category F or K fire comes from cooking oil and fats. Like category D fire, it’s difficult to put out because other common extinguishers can either enhance or restart it.
In fact, the only way to destroy it is using an extinguishing agent with either a wet or dry chemical as each reduces heat temperature and seals away oxygen.
Top 5 Off-road Fire Extinguishers
Fire Alert Off-road Fire Extinguisher
When it comes to general fire prevention problems, the First Alert Fire Marine Extinguisher provides such versatility.
This off-road fire extinguisher is capable of putting out flames from plainly combustible items like wood and clothes because of its UL rating of 1-A.
Surprisingly, it’s also capable of subduing flames under the B and C categories (10-B;C) which are Liquefied Petroleum Gases (LPGs).
And since it has a monoammonium phosphate component, you can safely spray it on your electronic devices when they’re on fire.
H3R Performance HalGuard Off-road Fire Extinguisher
A clean fire extinguishing process is what you’ll see in an H3R Performance HalGuard HG25OB Fire Extinguisher.
What makes this off-road fire extinguisher different from its counterparts is it doesn’t leave a massive corrosion stain on its tracks upon spraying.
Its Halotron System is responsible for the minimal mess it leaves behind which makes it very easy to clean.
Plus, it comes in different sizes for various purposes; for trackside, workshop and vehicle.
Mini Firefighter Off-road Fire Extinguisher
When cooking your favorite dish suddenly goes out of hand, trust Mini Firefighter All-purpose Fire Extinguisher to put a stop to a flame that can rapidly spread.
This off-road fire extinguisher is amazing in a sense that it not only covers flames under categories A, B and C, but also those falling under category K, caused by cooking oils.
As a matter of fact, the foam composition it produces can reach up to 40 times its original size to quickly douse flames before they even go at an alarming rate.
It can also be used for 4x4ing, camping, boating, etc.
H3R Performance MaxOut Off-road Fire Extinguisher
If you’re after both portability and a wide extinguishing range, then you’ll never go wrong with the H3R Performance MX250B.
This off-road fire extinguisher is easy enough to store behind your standard-size vehicle seats and doesn’t take much space at a height of 15”.
Regardless of its compact size, its spray capacity can reach a maximum of 15 feet, which can be very useful if putting yourself near the fire zone is dangerous.
Moreover, if you’re a newbie in using off-road fire extinguishers, you can easily follow its instruction manual.
Casa Lo Chef Off-road Fire Extinguisher
If you want to be bit of a daredevil in putting out fires Mission Impossible (MI) style, you may do so by using Casa Lo Chef’s Auto Fire Off (AFO) Fire Extinguisher Ball.
What’s great about this off-road fire extinguisher is it doesn’t require you to have a training on fire extinguishers to use it.
All you have to do is throw it in an area where there’s fire and it will simply blow up in 3-5 seconds, the moment it senses heat.
Furthermore, seniors and children can easily use it because it’s only 1.3 kilograms.
Installing an Off-road Fire Extinguisher
Mounting an off-road fire extinguisher on your 4×4 may be pure common sense for many but it’s important you get it right to keep it intact, easy to spot and avoid accidental leaks. Click here for the complete guide.
Fire preparedness is something you should always take seriously because fire can happen when you least expect it and it can cause a massive property damage. When your vehicle’s equipped with the right off-road fire extinguisher, you not only spare yourself from danger but you also protect a millions worth of 4×4 investments. Share us your insights about the topic by commenting below.
- Before You Buy a Fire Extinguisher by JMC RIDES
- Know Your Fire Extinguisher by Lakeland Community College
- H3R Performance HalGuard by Speedway Motors
- H3R Performance Fire Extinguisher by ECKLER’s via Grayce Chipp
- Mini Firefighter by David Sizer
- AFO Fireball Fire Extinguisher by www.afofireball.com via TinaA
- Fire Classes and Extinguishing Agents by Marine Online
- Important Jeep JL Upgrades by TrailRecon
- Icons made by Dave Gandy from www.flaticon.com