If you own a boat you will need a boat automatic fire extinguisher or marine extinguisher to ensure your safety. Fires can break out on boats and ships due to cooking, engine fires, and electrical fires.
It is hugely expensive to replace an entire boat, let alone replace an engine. By having safety equipment on board you can minimise damage caused by a fire, as well as save lives.
There are two types of automatic fire extinguishers available: gas and powder.
What Are Automatic Fire Extinguishers?
An automatic fire extinguisher project is in place to test various heat situations on boats. The idea behind the automatic design is to provide a discharge from the extinguisher at any point where the temperature reaches above 79 degrees Celsius.
This is the temperature a fire will start at, so the extinguisher discharges, smothering the fire before it can completely destroy the boat.
Why Are They Necessary For Boats?
An automatic extinguisher is necessary in the event that you are not on hand to put the fire out.
When cooking, you are naturally at the source and can act quickly; however, a fire in the engine compartment may take several minutes to reach.
This depends on whether the engine is right behind the captain’s chair or below a deck or two. To prevent further damage an automatic extinguisher is there to act straight away.
Aspects Of Automatic Extinguishers
A small powder fire extinguisher will have a space value of 1 or 2 kilograms. To work on an engine, a compartment is not necessary. It is compact for easy installation even in a small space near the engine, technology or computer you have on board.
This type of extinguisher is rated for class A, B and C fires. There is a larger version that works the same but it just offers more powder.
A residue-free or pressurised inert gas fire extinguisher for marine fires uses the FE36 gas which is a clean agent.
Unlike, previous models using halon, the gas is not going to deplete the ozone or damage the environment, making it safe to use.
Options include 1, 1.5 or 2 kilogram space volume. This particular fire extinguisher is rated for class B and C fires and safe to use on electrical equipment.
Being gas, it can be mounted almost horizontally and the gas will penetrate further and deeper into a compartment.
How To Make A Decision?
In short, with the choice of gas or powder for fire suppression, gas is the most effective option. It is much more expensive, hence the reason for an alternative.
Powder works well as a fire suppressant; however, it will damage the engine if used in the engine compartment. Although, as a fire would also damage the engine, this may not concern you.
Powder covers the fire surface rather than engulfing it. Gas engulfs the fire making it successful in extinguishing all types of fires without the damage to the engine that powder risks.
Despite this, powder automatic extinguishers are a popular option and taking price into account, you may find that this type is more reasonable for you.