Putting Out A Grease Fire In The Kitchen: What To Use And What To Avoid When Putting Out The Fire

Posted on: 17 December 2015

Fires are not only feared due to the damages they incur on properties, but also because they can cause death. Kitchen fires alone claim more than 460 lives each year and destroy properties worth 700$ or more. Grease fire is at the top of the chart when it comes to the culprits of kitchen fires. A grease fire occurs when the cooking oil becomes too hot; the oil starts to smoke before catching fire. However, it is easy to put out a grease fire at home if you know the right items to use for putting out the fire. On the other hand, it could all turn into a disaster when you use the wrong items.

What To Use To Put Out A Grease Fire

The following items which are readily available at home can be used to put out a grease fire:

  • Baking soda - Baking soda puts the fire out by cutting off the oxygen supply. Baking soda is made up of sodium carbonate which produces carbon dioxide gas when heated. The gas does not support combustion and is heavier than oxygen. Hence it settles naturally and overpowers the flame.
  • Fire Extinguisher - Class B fire extinguishers are particularly useful in putting out fires caused by grease. The extinguishers are labeled dry chemical fire extinguishers and carbon dioxide (CO2) fire extinguishers. To kill the fire efficiently, spray at the base of the fire.
  • Salt - Salt may not solve your problems entirely but if it is the only item you can use to minimize the fire in the kitchen, do not hesitate to use it. Salt will smother the flame before you can get hold of something that will put it out completely.

What To Avoid When Putting Out A Grease Fire

While the following items are readily available at home, you should never use them at any point in extinguishing a grease fire:

  • Water - Instead of killing the fire, water has an effect of doubling the flame when poured onto a grease fire. Water turns into vapor that forces the oil to splatter in all directions. The end result is of course a larger flame.
  • Flour - Flour can result in an explosion that might injure you severely. 

You can also put out a grease fire by covering your cooking pot with a metal lid. Turn off the heat first and then cover the pot with a lid to cut off the oxygen supply.  Just remember to leave the pot in its position. Moving it may tempt the fire to spread. For more information on fire prevention, contact local professionals.