Fire extinguishers

Submitted: Friday, Feb 14, 2014 at 15:41
ThreadID: 106240 Views:3419 Replies:11 FollowUps:7
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I have the fire extinguisher for the car in the drivers door pocket of the twin cab ute for easy access. The other day we had a stinker, the car was parked in the sun and when I checked the extinguisher it was quite warm. Not hot and not in direct sunlight but it got me thinking that there may be a better place for it. Where would be the best place to mount the extinguisher? I have yet to see any official recommendations. The door was an easy fix as it didn't require any mount and was held firmly in place. I am sure some companies that use vehicles on a daily basis may have some policy regarding the placement of extinguishers
I hope I never need it, but if I do I would want it close at hand in a place that didn't interfere with driving. Curious about where others store the extinguisher.
I know people have theirs in the trailer. So do I but I also have one for the car so I am specifically interested in car mounting. Not how just where.
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Reply By: pop2jocem - Friday, Feb 14, 2014 at 16:04

Friday, Feb 14, 2014 at 16:04

If you are worried about temperature effecting you extinguisher I wouldn't.
Mine is mounted on the floor just inside the door beside the drivers seat.
Worked in the NW of WA for more years than I care to remember and saw extinguishers mounted in all sorts of places including direct sunlight. I'm talking ambients up to 60 degrees C. You could have cooked the Sunday roast in the cab if the vehicle was left with the windows up.

AnswerID: 526449

Reply By: Member Andys Adventures - Friday, Feb 14, 2014 at 16:30

Friday, Feb 14, 2014 at 16:30
Hi Coldee,
I keep mine under the drivers seat, but have 3 another under the passenger seat and one in the back next to the stove. I leave my car in the sun up in the top end and the temp in summer is 48c outside and you just can't get into the car for the heat. I did have the same thought as you and let one off after it was so hot that I needed to use a towel to hold it and it worked perfect. So if you are happy where it is leave it there.
Cheers Andy

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AnswerID: 526457

Reply By: Member - Michael P (QLD) - Friday, Feb 14, 2014 at 17:40

Friday, Feb 14, 2014 at 17:40
Close and as accessible possible would be best, the only other consideration would be that it doesn't become a missile if Mr. Murphy comes into play.
AnswerID: 526460

Reply By: Member - Coldee - Friday, Feb 14, 2014 at 19:25

Friday, Feb 14, 2014 at 19:25
Thanks all. Yes, the thought of it going off in the heat was a concern. I wasn't keen of having it getting too hot and rupturing.
It will not become a missile because it fits neatly into a rather useless drink bottle holder on the door of the D-Max. Ok for maps but a bit hard to grab the bottle with my long legs.
Under the seat was not an option. It has to be stored upright. Besides, I don't like hard objects under the seat because they can get under my feet and I am concerned about them getting under the peddles if they roll out.
Thanks again for your advice.
AnswerID: 526465

Follow Up By: Ross M - Friday, Feb 14, 2014 at 19:36

Friday, Feb 14, 2014 at 19:36
Apparently they are better lying down and not standing up.
If the powder settles or sort of solidifies at the bottom it isn't free flowing powder until it is all shaken and disturbed again.

I think you mean pedals, as in foot pedals, not peddles as in different white powder up a nose.
FollowupID: 808675

Follow Up By: Member - bbuzz (NSW) - Friday, Feb 14, 2014 at 20:30

Friday, Feb 14, 2014 at 20:30
I have a 120 Prado and my 2 extinguishers are located in the back seat area, bolted in their cradle to the step next to the seat.

I have had them there for 6 years and they are not in the way of passengers getting in and out.

I am concerned about access should I need them, but that would apply wherever you put them.

Bill B

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Follow Up By: Stu & "Bob" - Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 08:48

Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 08:48
Ross is correct. they are better lying horizontal than standing vertical.
Also a good idea to turn it upside down and smack the base with a rubber hammer to loosen the powder every month or so. When the powder is loose, it can be felt moving when the extinguisher is inverted.

FollowupID: 808704

Follow Up By: Member - Coldee - Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 11:18

Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 11:18
Yep, thanks for the spelling correction. As for the orientation I am just following the instructions on the extinguisher.
FollowupID: 808716

Follow Up By: The Bantam - Sunday, Feb 16, 2014 at 09:58

Sunday, Feb 16, 2014 at 09:58
Standing upright or on their side, the powder will still compact.

you need to give em a periodic thump and shake regardless.

Remember too.....they realy should be serviced or replaced fairly every couple of years.

FollowupID: 808756

Reply By: Varmint - Friday, Feb 14, 2014 at 21:12

Friday, Feb 14, 2014 at 21:12
Everyone of our work vehicles has an extinguisher in them. Once a year we put them to be serviced .I was there when the did this. All he does is belt the bottom of the extinguisher with a rubber mallet a few times ,stamps the tag and charges a fortune to do it. I do this with my extinguisher every year .
AnswerID: 526470

Follow Up By: Stu & "Bob" - Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 19:54

Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 19:54
The bloke should be servicing them every 6 months and stamping the tag.
I am fairly sure that extinguishers need to be static pressure tested every 5 years also.
I have a few around the place, can't have too many of these in my opinion.
FollowupID: 808727

Reply By: Member - Andrew - Friday, Feb 14, 2014 at 21:39

Friday, Feb 14, 2014 at 21:39
Hi Coldee
I know you don't see it as a issue but it may help others.

A number of things to consider when mounting things.
• Strength of item being attached
• Strength of attachment system
• strength of material being attached to
In motorsport we used to work on a 25 times guideline. That is the retention system had to withstand a force a minimum of 25 times the weight of the object. This guideline was based on things not coming loose in the event of a crash and reflected the sort of forces involved.
On that basis a 1Kg extinguisher, in a crash, weighs at least 25Kg and the force that generates needs to be resisted in all directions. The extinguisher needs to stay in its bracket. The bracket needs to stay attached to the vehicle and the bolts holding it all together need to be strong enough to withstand the forces applied.
The forces can apply in any direction so fitting into pockets or hollows can leave a missile if (when) it comes loose, think roll-over.
Most brackets supplied are not very strong and do not retain the extinguishers very well as they were designed as wall mounts for buildings, not for vehicles.
We have seen snapped brackets, broken self tappers used to hold brackets, tek screws pulled through floors and weak vehicle attachment points torn out.
Keeping them out of the passenger compartment is the safest practice but totally impractical if it is needed in a hurry so the traditional way is to bolt it to the floor just in front of the drivers seat where it can be accessed quickly by the driver. Your backup units can go somewhere else because hopefully by you have enough time to access it.

Another consideration
Dry powder fire extinguishers used to have a terrible habit of powder compaction so that when they were set off the propellant came out and the powder stayed in.
The modern versions apparently have a coating on the powder that inhibits that compaction, however practical experience has found it is not perfect. So extinguishers should be pulled from their brackets occasionally and given a good shake to ensure the powder remains loose.

AnswerID: 526471

Reply By: Murray48 - Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 10:43

Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 10:43
If your extinguisher is in good condition, temperature inside a car shouldn't be an issue.
Extinguishers should be serviced every 6 months according to Australian Standards and removed from service at 5 years for hydrostatic testing. Somewhere on the extinguisher will be a date of manufacture, typically on the base or the neck. It will be a month and year. 5 years from this date the extinguisher should be retired.
The stamping is sometimes a bit hard to find as it is usually full of paint.
Extinguishers that are subject to vibration will still settle and it is not uncommon to have them fail if they are not turned regularly. This why you should test the extinguisher prior to committing yourself to a fire situation.
Mine are mounted on the floor in front of the drivers seat in the landcruiser and in front of the front passenger seat of the hilux.
AnswerID: 526504

Reply By: SDG - Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 12:47

Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 12:47
One thing I noticed is that heavy vehicles have theirs mounted outside of the vehicle. Sure, they might be bigger, but at least they are easy to get to. Both for trailer, and towing vehicle.

Just got to work out a way that some clown does not knock it off.
AnswerID: 526510

Follow Up By: Ozrover - Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 13:44

Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 13:44
I have one large commercial stored pressure water fire extinguisher mounted in the tray of my ute as well as two smaller powder type extinguishers in the cab.

I have thought about someone "knocking it off" but it does take a bit of a knack to get it out & in an emergency I'd rather not be fumbling around with keys for padlocks etc...

FollowupID: 808720

Reply By: Member - evaredy - Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 14:20

Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 14:20
I currently have one tucked behind the rear seat of the Dmax dual cab. I am considering buying two more and mounting them to the outside edge of the roof rack so they are in easy reach.
But the only thing that worries me is some A hole swiping them.
AnswerID: 526513

Reply By: SDG - Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 17:55

Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 17:55
Doing a bit of research, fire extinguishers in the States have a pressure valve that is released if needed to prevent explosion. Are ours the same as theirs??????
AnswerID: 526520

Reply By: Dennis Ellery - Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 18:03

Saturday, Feb 15, 2014 at 18:03
I have one mounted behind the driver’s seat within easy reach.
A mate of mine was driving through Tenants Creek when one of a group of locals stepped out in front of his 4WD trying to stop him. He put his foot down and the bloke smartly jumped out of the road.
Mine’s not only for extinguishing fires.
AnswerID: 526522

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