Do you have an A, B, C, D or K fire extinguisher? You might have seen one or several of those letters listed on a fire extinguisher, but do you know what they mean? The reason for those letters is to let you know what type of fires the extinguisher is meant for. It could actually be dangerous to use the wrong type of extinguisher for the wrong fire. It could cause the fire to worsen or it could be dangerous for the person using the fire extinguisher.

So what different types of fires are there? Isn’t fire just fire? While they might behave in a similar way, there are some important differences. A fire could be in wood and paper, gasoline and oil, electrical systems, combustible metals or animal fats and oils. Those are the five categories that correspond to the 5 letters that you will find on your extinguisher. You should make sure that it matches what you are most likely to encounter in your home.

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