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MG MGA - fire extinguisher

On readings the contributions to Graham's subject of carburetor holes but going onto to fire extinguishers the accounts of fire were fairly sobering and I thought it would be interesting to see what provision other owners have in their cars. It seems to me that a fire represents one of the greatest and possibly most frequent dangers to our cars both on the road and in the garage. I have a dry powder extinguisher by a suppler called 'Kidde Safety UK' that has a discharge time of 8-12 seconds but no expiry date. Had it for years fixed under the dash and not at all sure if it's big enough or of the right type. Other alternatives : foam, Co2?
J H Cole


Mine is identical to yours. Content weight is 1.13kg of dry powder. It covers Class A, B, C and E. Class A is rubbish, wood, paper; Class B is liquid, grease; Class C is gaseous; Class E is electrical. Dry powder is often termed the ‘multi-purpose’ extinguisher, as it can be used on classes A, B & C fires. Best for running liquid fires (Class B).

You are correct. No expiry date shown and that concerns me. I went on to The Kidde site but could not open up the FAQs and operating manuals. Bit worrying. Might look at replacing it. It is several years old. For continuity, this is the picture of mine I posted in that other thread.


Steve Gyles

The usual way to check if the extinguisher is charged is by weight. They should have a weight when full marked on them.

There are other issues with internal corrosion and pressure testing both of which means that extinguishers are condemed after a certain amount of time.

Dry powder extinguishers are good when mounted in a static position, not so good for carrying in a vehicle as the powder compresses with vibration and they often fail to go off when needed. They can also be very messy.

Some of the more modern AFFF (foam) extinguishers are quite good.
J Bray

It is not at all unusual for a powder extinguisher to leak all the propellant without any of the powder coming out.

If you don't have a guage on the side and it's more than 3-4 years old, I wouldn't count on it working.

The RAF firemen always taught us techies to turn dry powder extinguishers upside down every month to stop them becoming packed solid and not working. The other thing they did was to let us try all the types of extinguishers out on various types of fire (Aviation Fuel, plastics, paper etc.). Personally I don't think you can beat a dry powder on engine/fuel fires.

I still give my car one a good shake and check the pressure guage regularly.

On the Magnette it is nice and secure tucked between the offside sill and the seat runner.
P Reardon

I keep mine on the floor behind the passenger seat. I was doing some hot work on a car once and inadvertently ignited a large rodent nest inside the sills. Luckily I had that fire extinguisher...
Mark J Michalak

This thread was discussed between 20/08/2012 and 22/08/2012

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