How To Clean Up Fire Extinguisher Powder

How To Clean Up Fire Extinguisher Powder

Maybe your fire extinguisher went off accidentally and now you have residue and don’t know where to put it?

Whatever the reason is that brought you here today, we have the answers for you!

When it comes to fire extinguishers, many of us are relieved to have them in our homes or business.

But as soon as we are plagued by the powder or residue it leaves behind, we become frustrated.

Suddenly, no one seems to know what to do and you are left with powder you just don't know how to get rid of.

Well, no more! Today we are here with a complete guide to help you clean up fire extinguisher powder!

We will be looking at the different powder or residue that different types of fire extinguishers leave behind too, so no matter the extinguisher, we have you covered!

How To Clean Up Fire Extinguisher Powder 

As we mentioned earlier, there are a few different types of fire extinguishers and different ways to clean up the powders or residues that they leave behind.

So let’s take a look at how you can clean the powder up depending on the type of fire extinguisher that you have!

Remember to take care when you are cleaning these chemicals and residue up.

They can cause skin irritation, so make sure that you are wearing gloves or eyewear where necessary to protect yourself.

If a fire occurred in a business, you will need to ensure that only those that have received the relevant fire safety training are using the extinguishers and cleaning up the residue in line with your regulations.

Cleaning Up Dry Chemical Fire Extinguisher Powder 

Dry chemical fire extinguishers feature potassium bicarbonate, sodium bicarbonate, and monoammonium phosphate, leaving behind a corrosive powder.

You will want to clean this powder up quickly after using these fire extinguishers, following our steps below.

  • Start by using a vacuum or brush to sweep up loose debris.
  • Next, you will want to make a spray of isopropyl alcohol and water and spray it on the powder you can’t sweep up.
  • Leave the spray for a few minutes before wiping it with a damp cloth.
  • Next, make a solution that is 98% hot water and 2% vinegar. 

This will neutralize the sodium and potassium bicarbonate residue.

  • Leave this solution for a few minutes before wiping the area with a damp cloth.
  • Follow with a paste of hot water and baking soda. You will want to leave this for several minutes before wiping it with a damp cloth. 

This will neutralize the monoammonium phosphate powder.

  • To finish, wash the whole area with soap and water.
  • Rinse clean before using fans to dry the area quickly.

Cleaning Up Wet Chemical Fire Extinguisher Powder

Cleaning Up Wet Chemical Fire Extinguisher Powder

Wet chemical fire extinguishers don’t feature corrosive elements the same way dry chemical extinguishers do, making them a good choice for commercial kitchens.

These extinguishers release a fine mist that cools cooking surfaces and puts the flames out.

But you will need to clean the area after use before you can cook again. Use our steps below to do this easily!

  • First, you will want to turn off all power to the area and put rubber gloves on.
  • Next, take a sponge or cloth and dip it in hot and soapy water. Use this to wipe away the foamy residue on the surface.
  • Next, rinse every surface that has had contact with the wet chemicals to ensure they are fully removed.
  • To finish, leave everything to dry completely before turning the power on again.

Cleaning Up Halotron Fire Extinguisher Powder 

Older fire extinguishers use Halotron as their main extinguishing agent.

Although they don’t make fire extinguishers with this anymore, you might have one in your home or business, and it might get used, so you need to know how to clean the residue up!

It will leave behind no visible residue, but that doesn’t mean we should not clean the area up!

You will want to remove any smoky smells from the area and also ensure that the surface is neutralized. You can do this easily using our steps below.

  • First, take a diluted degreaser and apply it to the area where you used the extinguisher.
  • Take a sponge to tackle small areas, or you can use a spray bottle to cover a larger area quickly.
  • Next, use a neutral cleaner to remove any residue that is remaining.
  • To finish, wipe away all the cleaning products that you have used. Leave the surface to dry completely before using it again.

Are There Any Fire Extinguishers That Don’t Leave Powder Behind?

Yes, there are some fire extinguishers out there that don’t leave any powder or residue behind!

These clean agent extinguishers are perfect for putting out fires near computers or electronics.

They are non-conductive and non-ozone depleting, meaning you don’t need to worry about water damaging any electronics.

They work by harmlessly dissipating into the atmosphere, leaving no residue or powder behind that would need to be cleaned up!

Final Thoughts 

And there you have it, all the ways that you can clean up fire extinguisher powder!

No matter the type of fire extinguisher that you have, we hope this guide has been helpful and answered your questions today.

Remember, that you will need to tailor your cleaning method depending on the fire extinguisher that you have.

You can use our steps to do this, but we also recommend checking the user manual or any information on the fire extinguisher itself to see if there are any other steps you need to implement.

For those cleaning up fire extinguisher powder in a business, be sure to follow your company's cleaning procedures and fire safety protocols to ensure that you are maintaining the safety of yourself and others.