Is it required to have a fire extinguisher in your house?

A home safety fire extinguisher in a kitchen.

With the focus on the horrendous bush fires, it’s easy to forget that more than fifty Australians die every year in house fires.

One of the biggest causes is bad electrics but there are many other things in your home that can start a fire. Being aware of what these are will help you to prevent it from happening.

But, no matter how well prepared you are, there are times when a fire will simply happen. That’s when you need to be alerted quickly and take decisive action.

Every home should have a smoke alarm, this will provide you advance warning of a fire. The emphasis is to get you and your family safely out of the house. Even if the fire is small it can spread quickly, getting them out ensures everyone is safe.

Should the fire be small you’re going to want to try and put it out yourself. That’s when you’re going to want a fire extinguisher from reputable fire safety equipment suppliers.

Is It A Legal Requirement?

You don’t legally need to have a fire extinguisher in your home. It is a legal requirement in rental properties and business but only a recommendation in your own home.

However, it’s a good idea to invest in one, it can save your property burning down, potentially save lives, and perhaps even avoid a fire spreading to nearby homes of the bush.

However, there are many different types of fire extinguishers on the market. You can’t have all of them in your home! You should have one n your kitchen and one n your garage as they are the most likely places for fires to start.

The best one to opt for is an all-purpose fire extinguisher. This should be labeled “ABC” or “DCP”.

A fire extinguishers deal with wood, paper, and cloth.

B fire extinguishers handle flammable liquids like cooking oil.

C category extinguishers are for electrical fires.

Your all-purpose fire extinguisher can handle all 3 types of fire, avoiding you having to read the labels when dealing with a fire.

Using It

It’s essential that you know how to use a fire extinguisher. In essence, they are very simple, pull the holding pin and direct the nozzle while squeezing the trigger. But, this is easy when you’re calm, it can be more difficult when faced with an actual fire.

You can speak to your local fire service about practice sessions. They will often organize these and give you the opportunity to experience using a fire extinguisher. It can be very beneficial if you ever need to use one.

Don’t forget, fire extinguishers need to be maintained yearly to ensure the pressure is correct and they’ll work when you need them to. They also have an expiration date; At this point, they must be recycled although your fire service or a local fire safety firm may be able to refill and charge them.

Take the risk of fire seriously and be prepared, hopefully, you’ll never have to experience one.

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