got your fire extinguisher HANDY??


Staff member
how many guys HAVE a CO2 extinguisher handy ? or for that matter ANY DECENT FIRE EXTINGUISHERS THAT ARE EASILY ACCESSED?

an engine coughing back as you set timing or a bit of welding slag , a short circuit or defective battery connection, flammable solvents ,oily trash, sparks, all can be the almost instant source of huge problems if you can,t contain a minor fire very quickly, and YOU WILL eventually have a small fire start, if you work on cars ,its not a question of if.. only how bad and when!
Ive always preferred the Co2 because theres no extensive clean up work after their use required,, but having ANY DECENT extinguisher that's easily accessed is MANDATORY, in a auto garage, home or shop
Ive ALMOST always had SEVERAL fire extinguishers, mounted near every door in my shop for the last 30 plus years, because IVE seen several freinds shops damaged when little stuff , like a shorted electrical connection, fuel leaks, or welding sparks or a hot exhaust caused problems that ,quickly got out of control , and when the ready access of an extinguisher, was not available.
Id point out that while most dry chemical fire extinguishers work reasonably well, they make one hell of a mess , a C02 10 lb version may cost more and be harder to find but its so much nicer in that you don,t have a huge corrosive mess, that can,t easily be removed with soapy water and a garden hose, it your forced into using it when your done

CO2 makes a whole lot less of a mess to clean up after use,

than your typical dry chemical version
no garage or shop should be without one of these mounted near the door where its easily located in an emergency


do yourself a HUGE FAVOR and get a QUALITY METAL TRASH CAN WITH A LID, as they are far more likely to survive stupid mistakes like flammable trash catching on fire, and have at least two good fire extinguishers as you WILL eventually have a fire from some cause, in any garage, it may be decades before you need it but when you need it youll need it badly







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viewtopic.php?f=27&t=3739&p=14340&hilit=+extinguisher#p14340 ... nguishers/



how many guys HAVE a couple CO2 or chemical fire extinguishers handy, in the garage for emergency screw ups?? and I'd point out that a 10 lb CO2 extinguisher is worth every penny because it works without making a huge mess like the dry chemical versions do

Ive made it a practice to keep a least two, located near the doors of my garage ever since seeing the results of a buddy who managed to burn his house down due to a small engine fire that got out of hand in his garage.
hopefully they never get used........but Ive come close at times in the last 40 years.
my buddy was trying to start a car after installing a cam, and had the distributor timing 180 degrees out because he forgot to spin the engine over one full turn before dropping in the distributor, the engine spit back and caught a small cup of gas he was using to prime the carb on fire, he dropped it and the cars engine compartment caught, if he had the presents of mind to grab a hose or a fire extinguisher at the time he might have been ok, but he tried to beat the fire out with a greasy towel, just making thing worse, things went down hill VERY rapidly after that!
IF you work on cars LONG enough, you WILL eventually do something STUPID, get into circumstances you did not see coming or work with guys that do! so having a large CO2 extinguisher handy is a great idea, and far easier to clean up after when you are forced to use them., than dry chemical extinguishers I thought ID bring this thread back up for attention since a friend just had extensive damage done to his car, when it caught fire, in his driveway ,he forgot to tighten a fuel line correctly after a cam install, and fuel sprayed all over the engine compartment, the car caught fire and he had a 5 lb ABC chemical extinguisher in his kitchen but not his garage, it took him only a few seconds to retrieve that extinguisher and use it but it didn,t fully do the job, he finally got it out with the garden hose but not before the car was extensively damaged.

Ive used a fairly LARGE 10lb CO2 extinguisher on most shop minor fires (yeah youll eventually have one if you do enough work) and its so far been ADEQUATE but surely not overkill, (I need to purchase a couple) I used a 5 lb ABC dry chemical extinguisher on a car ONCE! WHAT A TOTAL P.I.T.A. to clean up that total mess! and it BARELY was able to do the job.
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Re: extinguisher HANDY??

personally I like the OLD 10lb-or-15lb CO2 fire extinguishers in the shop, but...

Heres what I found on the Halotron agent-> Quote:

Halotron 1
is a proven clean fire extinguishing agent designed for streaming applications in portable and handheld fire extinguishers. It is the world’s most widely distributed halocarbon-based clean fire extinguishing agent for such applications. Halotron I has shown, by way of repeated successful extinguishment of real-world fires, that it can quickly and effectively protect valuable assets without generating an undesirable solid residue during the fire-extinguishment process.

It is common for users of fire extinguishers to have limited experience in their operation, and an independent study showed that Halotron I is easier to use for such relatively inexperienced users than other halocarbon clean agents. Halotron I is a safe, effective, environmentally acceptable chemical blend based on the raw material HCFC-123. It was originally introduced in 1992 to replace severe ozone depleting halon 1211, or bromochlorodifluoromethane (BCF).

Halotron I is discharged as a rapidly evaporating liquid, with a throw length of 6 to 45 feet (1.8 to 13.7 meters). Its relatively high boiling point of 80.6°F (27°C) gives it an advantage over other clean extinguishing agents, which tend to have lower boiling points and therefore evaporate sooner, limiting their throw length and overall effectiveness to the non-expert firefighter.
Also, unlike traditional dry chemical agents such as monoammonium phosphate (ABC Dry Chemical) or potassium bicarbonate (Purple K), which can be corrosive, Halotron I is a clean agent that leaves no residue after application, and consequently inflicts little to no collateral damage on equipment in the vicinity of the fire.

Halotron I is approved as environmentally acceptable under the U.S.
EPA’s SNAP program and has undergone the most extensive testing of any halogenated clean agent for portable fire extinguishers since 1992. There are more than 30 separate UL listings for Halotron I portable extinguishers, which is more than twice the number available with any other halocarbon-based clean agent.
Re: extinguisher HANDY??

DOES ANYONE! have a good source for 10-15 lb CO2 fire extinguishers, for shop use!

obviously stuff like this is the result of not having one handy


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btw its always a good idea when you work on any car to have a fire extinguisher handy and it won,t hurt to have a garden hose hooked up for quick access, thats easy to get to and reaches all of the interior of your garage
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Re: extinguisher HANDY??

grumpyvette said:
DOES ANYONE! have a good source for 10-15 lb CO2 fire extinguishers, for shop use!
I worked for the Fire Department for over 27-years and never found a cheap source for fire extinguishers. I have half dozen dry-chemical extinguishers in the shop and paid almost retail for each one. I got most of mine from hardware stores like Lowes. I consider those to be throw-away since it costs more to get them refilled than for a new one.

I wish I could find some big, cheap Halotron or halogen fire extinguishers.
Re: extinguisher HANDY??

cleaning up the mess dry chemical extinguishers leave is almost as bad as having the fire to begin with,.... I prefer the halon or CO2 as theres much less cleaning after use!, but even the dry chemical fire extinguishers will be a life saver in most cases. Ive seen to many shops and homes lost to what should have been only little nuisance type fires, from spilled grease on stoves or welding sparks, fires that got well out of hand quickly , that couild have been easily contained with a fire extinguisher.
naturally some basic precautions will be helpful, like removing flammable objects,from any area where you might produce sparks, not storing large amounts of fuel,placing oily rags in metal trash cans with lids and removing them from the shop at the end of the work day, welding out side the shop and having a garden hose that's got a nozzle and is easily accessed

ideally youll get a 10lb-20lb CO2 fire extinguisher as theres little if any mess caused by that style extinguisher, while the dry powder style work fine theres a big mess after the fires out to clean
Ive got two Co2, that are fairly old (they still read good but I don,t trust them) and four of these newer dry powder style currently in the shop ... ogId=10053

the basic A,B,C (like Lowes, Home Depot etc sells) extinguisher's powder is corrosive and will cause corrosion damage on aluminum and electronics and wires. BUT ID ALSO POINT OUT THAT The Halon and CO2 are expensive though

theres a good reason why I prefer CO2
Re: extinguisher HANDY??

grumpyvette said:
cleaning up the mess dry chemical extinguishers leave is almost as bad as having the fire to begin with, I prefer the halon or CO2 as theres much less cleaning after use!
Very true. Luckly I haven't needed to use them.
Re: extinguisher HANDY??

well I went out and bought two of these from HOME DEPOT for $70 each
kidde PRO-460 fire extinguishers ... 84,00.html

NOT what I wanted <IM still looking for two 15 lb CO2 extinguishers at a good price,
but Ill add those to the two current fire extinguishers in the shop, as some extra security
IVE got two 10 lb CO2 extinguishers
in the shop already
any shop that doesn,t have at least one decent fire extinguisher handy is seriously pushing their luck, in my opinion.
one of my friends, called to thank me for constantly bugging him into buying a couple fire extinguishers "HE WOULD NEVER USE" and forcing him to mount one on the door frame of the shop,and another on his inside garage door frame.
Id strongly suggested getting two simply because if the fires between you and the only extinguisher the second extinguisher will be very handy
seems he had been trying to get his lawn mower started and had pulled the plug to inspect it and put fresh gas in the tank, and had spilled some on the engine, well like most of us he had a less than intelligent moment and tried to start the mower but had forgotten to clip the magneto wire on the plug, it arced,
and ignited the spilled fuel on the engine and the open 1 gallon plastic gas can that was sitting next to the mower, well after screaming, cussing and running around for 3 seconds in a total panic, and getting slightly burned he remembered the extinguisher hanging on the wall next to the garage door and quickly put out the mower and the gas can (which luckily for him had only blown off it screw on spout, when the fumes ignited and was starting to melt but had not burst or he would have had about 2 more quarts of burning gas running across the garage floor, total damage was minor mostly because he had instant access to the extinguisher, it could have escalated into something much worse given a few more seconds to continue.

if anyone reading thru this thread knows where to get a great deal on 10lb,or 15lb ,or 20lb co2 extinguishers please post a link
co2 is far less messy to clean up after, than dry chemical
good advice.

i have a traditional type(small size) in my van, would be somewhat easy to reach while working on my cars., but the non-damaging type would be much better if i ever needed it.

plus, i need to put in a much more central location. or two.

thanks grumpy.
one very simple to over look factor is the trash cans you select for the shop, that factor was brought home recently when a buddy's shop almost caught fire, he had the common plastic trash cans in his shop rather than the galvanized steel with lids that tend to be a good bit safer.
now when I say that it might take a bit of explanation,
he had just changed out some batteries in a couple meters and thrown them into a trash can near his shop door where he kept the trash can, what he didn,t realize was the battery was still mostly charged even if it was 6 months old and it landed in a bunch of steel wool and paint, and sand paper from a recent project, the battery, shorted out,igniting the steel wool, paint, paper etc. and by the time my friend noticed, there were flames and the trash can it self was starting to burn along with the trash in it, if it was a metal can with a lid the chances would be far better that even if it caught fire, it would be less likely to catch the near by objects on fire than a plastic can that added fuel to the fire.
and theres a good chance a metal can with a snap on lid in place or one having the lid suddenly jammed on the top,would not allow enough air in to the fire to let it burn efficiently.
luckily he had a fire extinguisher, luckily, and got it put out quickly but not before the trash can, it self was mostly on fire and he swears the time between throwing the batteries in the trash can and the fire was under 7-8 minutes.
if you don,t think that can happen , try dropping a partly charged ,9volt battery into a pile of shredded 0000 steel wool, mixed with paint chips and paint thinner
you might be amazed at the results.
I told him he was darn lucky, if he had thrown the battery away as he left the shop chances are good that by the time he noticed the fire it would have been a major fire, I also suggested use of both metal cans with lids and a smoke detector would not hurt.
I also suggest always having a 100 foot hose hooked up to the water supply so you have at least some fire suppression capability handy
an getting the fire extinguisher refilled would be a great idea.
IF your thinking, many of my friends are careless, sloppy or unlucky,well, take the time to ask any of the older more experienced guys who work on cars,
no, its not really that, its just I know a great many people in the auto hobby and having built many of them engines over the years, and between electrical screw-ups welding accidents and stupid moves with fuel, I get to hear lots of conversations and shop or garage fires while VERY COMMON are usually put out and no big deal its something that needs to be pointed out and watched.
I doubt you'll find ANYONE whose worked around cars that has not at one time or another had a minor shop fire if they have been doing serious work with electrical systems, fuel system or welding for at least a few dozen years, most of those fires are minor in scope if caught early, and can be stamped out, or a garden hose, used, and people rarely brag about getting careless or consider a fire that they put out seconds after it started really news worthy .
its going to be a rare guy thats never seen hot welding slag, welding rods, fuel spills, sparks, or just electrical problems not cause a minor fire that they needed to put out, in 20-30 years.
IM just trying to point out the potential and limit the damages
Over the last 45 years that I have worked on mechanical stuff, electrical stuff, welding and cutting, I have had to use a fire extinguisher 4 times that I can remember. 3 of the 4 times I don't believe I could have prevented a serious structure and/or vehicle fire without the fire extinguisher handy.
IF you work on cars on a consistent basis and do major repairs or mods its only a matter of time before you'll eventually need one....ID highly recommend having SEVERAL, and a CO2 type makes far less of a mess than the dry chemical style

no garage or shop should be without one of these mounted near the door where its easily located in an emergency

just a reminder,of why you should keep a couple fire extinguishers in the shop,
it might be decades since you had a problem, but thats not saying it could not happen to you later today or tomorrow, so be aware and prepared!

(ideally the refillable CO2 type) I got a call from a friend recently who was working on his car when a friend was over helping him test the alternator , and the car battery cable connection was a bit corroded, So while replacing the battery cable he some how got the car wiring that got shorted to ground, to start a minor fire under the hood and while he had it out in seconds because he keeps a fire extinguisher handy on the shop wall, for emergency's he still needed to replace some wiring and spend a good deal of effort cleaning up dry chemicals and he will need to replace the partly used fire extinguisher,
thats a huge improvement over the whole car, and possibly the shop burning down, but its still a P.I.T.A.. [/b]
just a reminder
I pulled these pictures off the internet, a guy started his truck, something went wrong and he didn,t have a fire extinguisher instantly handy, look stuff happens but having a couple fire extinguishers in easy reach might prove to be a huge help!






while were talking fire extinguishers,
does anyone know a good source
(both fairly in expensive and dependable)
for rechargeable 10lb-20b CO2 fire extinguishers ?
If youve ever put out a engine fire with those dry chemical extinguishers you know what a P.I.T.A. the resulting clean up after wards is, and a CO2 extinguisher makes clean up FAR easier.
Ive got several 15 lb dry chemical extinguishers in the shop, but its almost the last option , because Ive sen the clean up required after use
I found these pictures posted on the internet, showing what the result was from a engine fire, according to the guy posting the engine stopped he got out to find smoke pouring from under the hood and had no fire extinguisher in the car, as a result he lost the corvette, now obviously I have no idea past what he posted concerning the incident but having a decent fire extinguisher in your car and certainly several in your home and garage is money well spent!

I Want a 1 Or 2 # Halon fire extinguisher to keep in my C4 Vert.
Have fire extinguisers around the house &'garages

I have a 9 lb Halon at one end of the garage and a 20 lb Dry Chemical at the other end.

Made my wife watch a couple of videos on Youtube a couple of months ago and how to use one.

I'm calling this stump the mechanic.
I usually put my cars away for the winter in October. I put them in the pole barn, take out the batteries and put them on "Battery Tenders".
In early May I wanted to bring one of the cars up to the garage. This car has a 350 SBC that I had built @ 3 years ago (4 bolt, forged crank & pistons, Howards roller cam & lifters, Holley 650, mechanical fuel pump) and a Muncie 4 speed trans. It has run fine for the past 2 years. So I put in & hooked up the battery, gave the engine the once over, closed the hood and figured I was ready to go. Since the car was sitting for @ 8 months it took some cranking and pumping. It finally caught and started and after a few seconds I noticed condensation on the passenger side of the hood. I immediately shut it off, opened the hood and was shocked when the whole right side of the engine compartment was soaked with gas including puddles in all the intake low areas.
I removed the air cleaner and 2 days later a buddy came over to look for leaks while I tried to start it. It started right up with no leaks or other issues to be found. I drove it up to the garage where it has been sitting since.
Tuesday, a week and a half ago was the first time I had tried to start the car since I brought it up to the garage @ 2-1/2 months ago. Again I gave the engine a good look, left the hood up and tried to start the car. Again after some pumping and cranking it started and since the hood was open, right away I saw fluid spraying over the passenger side of the windshield. I shut it off immediately, got out to look and again the whole right hand side of the engine compartment was soaked with gas.
I removed the air cleaner and Friday a buddy came over to check for leaks while I started the car and again it started right up with no leaks or other issues.
In the past few days I have started the car several times and taken it on a couple of cruises and it runs fine with no leaks or other problems.
Does anyone have a clue on where the gas can be coming from and why only after it sits for an extended period of time?"

without testing its just guessing but it sounds like a sticking float and or dried out gaskets in the carb or a defective fuel line connection, or maybe a loose fitting or crack in a fuel line, or defective manual fuel pump, that clears after fresh fuel runs thru the lines, swelling the gasket or fuel line or temporarily sealing the leak, and or needle & seat in the carb thats not seating correctly for a few seconds, Id strongly suggest finding the cause before driving the car , and having the hood up and a friend inspecting the car with a 10 lb co2 fire extinguisher in hand, and rolling the car out away from all structures when you work on it until you locate the cause, Id sure verify the fuel pressure and it should be below 6 psi at the carb inlet port
personally ID replace the carb and gaskets and fuel lines before even trying to run the car again, its going to be far less expensive than a car fire, a condition like thats just far to dangerous to be allowed to continue , or even take a chance, I replace the fuel lines and carb and if your running a manual fuel pump, that being on the pass side of the engine makes it suspect!!! ID replace that pump, the fuel lines and carb, during the process before even attempting to restart the engine

This one reason why I like a seperate Toggle switch hardwired to a high performance electric fuel pump.
Shut off the fuel pump immediate if problems arrise.
Cracked fuel lines a common problem on high horsepower & torque engines.