Fire Extinguisher Guide

Part 3: Fire Extinguisher Types (extinguishing agents)

There are eight different extinguishing agents used in fire extinguishers. They consist of ABC Dry Chemical, BC Dry Chemical, Dry Powder, Water, Foam, Wet Chemical, Halogenated, and Carbon Dioxide. As shown below, each of these agents apply to one or more of the fire classes mentioned above.

ABC Dry Chemical

Works on class A, B, and C fires (Multipurpose).

BC Dry Chemical

Works on class B and C fires.

Carbon Dioxide

Works on class B and C fires.


Works on class A fires.


Works on class A and B fires.


Works on class A, B, and C fires.

Dry Powder

Works on class D fires.

Wet Chemical

Works on class K fires.
* Halogenated extinguishers are recommended for use around sensitive electrical equipment due to the fact that they will not leave a possibly damaging residue on the equipment as will other extinguishing agents.

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