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Thread: Class B vs. K

  1. #1
    Forum Member ffexpCP's Avatar
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    Question Class B vs. K

    Can someone please explain to me exactly how the new class K is different from the currently used dry chem. ABC? It appears it is a sort of a foam which is non conductive. Is there something else Im missing? Is the B rating now used strictly for petroleum and the K for fats and others?

    http://www.amerex-fire.com/sales/wet_chem.html
    Last edited by ffexpCP; 02-18-2004 at 02:26 AM.


  2. #2
    MembersZone Subscriber mcaldwell's Avatar
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    I don't know all the reasons for the creation of the new class, but I believe the biggest difference to the standard dry chem is the low toxicity (around food and prep areas), reduced cross-contamination of the surrounding area, and the added cooling effect of the water based agent.

    The old chem powder would make such a mess that you effectively had to close your kitchen until a thorough cleaning and decontamination could take place. It could be toxic upon ingestion, and the corrosive nature of the agent pitted some finished surfaces. Dry chem is also of limited effectiveness on cooking oil and similar fires because there is no cooling effect. The K agent can be used on one individual appliance without overwhelming the operator in a small space, and with a little quick clean-up allow the kitchen to remain in operation.

    The K is intended for kitchen fat use only, not fuels and/or other petroleum based products.

    I'm sure there's more to it, but that's all I've got.
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    Default Class B versus K

    The previous answer is correct in the reasons for class K according to the sales reps for class K agents. The class K agents are non-corrosive and biodegradable unlike dry chem. There are several agents out there the two most popular are "Cold Fire" and "Fire Aide". We have tested both and have not found a difference in their abilities. We currently use Cold Fire but are switching over to Fire Aide for the simple fact of cost and it being made here in Arizona.

    Class K agents do not have the same properties as class A foam as far as expansion. They work well in PW cans and proportioners but we have found they do not work as well as class A or AFFF in a CAF system. Class K agents have excellent cooling capabilities and work well on vehicle fires also. Last night we used a Class K agent on some wood piles to show our volunteers the capabilities of it. We just tried to re-light those piles and could not get them to ignite. The pile that we used plain water on re-lit without any problem.

    We are sold on the advantages of class K agents verse class A for kitchen fires and vehicle fires. If I can answer any more questions or be of any help feel free to e-mail me.

    B. Brooks
    Captain
    Linden FD
    lindenfd3@frontiernet.net

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    dazed and confused Resq14's Avatar
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  5. #5
    Forum Member ffexpCP's Avatar
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    Default bump

    anyone else?

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Class B versus K

    Originally posted by lfdcaptainl15
    The class K agents are non-corrosive and biodegradable unlike dry chem.
    Class K fire extinguishers sold by Amerex use a CAUSTIC LIQUID. The liquid has a low PH so that it will react with grease and form a soap layer on the oil

    [/i]
    There are several agents out there the two most popular are "Cold Fire" and "Fire Aide". [/QUOTE]

    These ARE NOT class K rated. They are snake oil rated the last time I checked.

    [/i]
    Class K agents do not have the same properties as class A foam as far as expansion. [/QUOTE]

    I would hope not. apples and oranges two diffrent things

    [/i]
    They work well in PW cans and proportioners but we have found they do not work as well as class A or AFFF in a CAF system. Class K agents have excellent cooling capabilities and work well on vehicle fires also. [/QUOTE]

    Dude do you even have a clue as to what your talking about The class K wet chemical recharge chemical that I order to refill fire extinguishers is a POWDER!!!!

    [/i]
    We are sold on the advantages of class K agents verse class A for kitchen fires and vehicle fires. If I can answer any more questions or be of any help feel free to e-mail me.[/QUOTE]

    B. Brooks
    Captain
    Linden FD[/B][/QUOTE]

    Nice reply if would mean something if you knew something about the topic.
    Last edited by choad33; 02-19-2004 at 04:45 PM.

  7. #7
    Senior Member FFMcDonald's Avatar
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    Class K extinguishers are used in areas where cooking oils are used. It uses a process called 'saponification' to form a layer on top of the cooking oil, which prevents flammable vapors from being released - and smothers the fire.

    Why the reason for class K extinguishers after all these years? Couldn't tell you.

    Can tell you that even in the evenings - when most establishements 'turn down' their deep fat fryers - they only turn them down to about 170 degrees.
    Due to the fact that the cooking oil remains at these elevated temperatures -- over a period of time, the ignition of the oil begins to lower as the oil breaks down.

    Now, I am SURE that all restaraunts change their oil all the time, so this isn't a problem
    Marc

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    Default

    Originally posted by FFMcDonald
    Class K extinguishers are used in areas where cooking oils are used. It uses a process called 'saponification' to form a layer on top of the cooking oil, which prevents flammable vapors from being released - and smothers the fire.

    Why the reason for class K extinguishers after all these years? Couldn't tell you.

    The low PH liquid of a wet chemical extinguisher does the same thing that a Sodium Bicarb dry chemical fire extinguisher does. The reason that the wet chemical fire extinguisher was put on the market in 1995 was to also cool the fire. The switch from lard to plant made cooking oils makes a hotter fire BTU wise. The newer deep fat fryers that are being sold today are larger in size and VERY insulated. The ability if the cooking appliance to retain heat in combination with a hoter fire, is beyond the ability of a 40B Sodium Bicarb fire extinguisher required under NFPA 10 untill the 1998 change. After 1998 NFPA 10 only required a wet chemical fire extinguisher in new instlations. Under the changes made to NFPA 10 in 2003 ALL 40B dry chemical fire extinguishers shall be replaced with a wet chemical fire extinguisher at the time the the old fire extinguisher is next due for testing. The phase in date is from 2003 to 2009 for all establishemts. Most of the older dry chemical systems that are still used to protect cooking instlations will also be phased out in the next decade or so. If anyone has any other questions and you want a CORRECT answer feel free to mail me. I am the head instructor for the fire protection company that I work for. I currenty hold certifications to do work in PA and NJ.

  9. #9
    Keepin it real Fyrechicken's Avatar
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    Here's link to the new signage for the fire classes

    http://store.yahoo.com/sarsam/firetypes.html
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  10. #10
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    Default

    choad33 is correct the newer cooking oils are hotter and the old agents don't work as well at extinguishment.

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