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Wondering what do symbols on a fire extinguisher mean is a classic question posed by many when they’re looking to have their fire safety inspections up to date in their home, workplace, or boat. Marine Diesel Specialists, experts in all things marine diesel repair and supplies, understand that for many people, the symbols can get a bit complicated. For this reason, our team of experts has come together and provided this easy-to-follow guide to help make fire safety learning a breeze! So, what do the symbols on a fire extinguisher indicate?

Fire Extinguisher Symbols and Their Meaning Based on Letters

When you have to extinguish a fire and are looking for which extinguisher to use, you’re going to see two different indicators – a letter and a picture. What do the symbols on a fire extinguisher indicate? They indicate to the user which type of extinguisher to use, why, and under which circumstances. Here is the breakdown of each letter, its meaning, and corresponding symbols.

A: The letter A indicates to the owner that the particular fire extinguisher they are about to use is meant for paper, wood, trash, and other common materials. The symbol associated with this tends to be a trash can next to a woodpile, both on fire.

B:  If the fire you are dealing with is the result of gasoline, paint, oil, or other flammable liquids, this is the fire extinguisher symbol to look for! Also, be on the lookout for a picture of a gas canister atop a fire.

C: This letter is meant to help people associate the extinguisher with electrical fires. If the flames are the result of an electrical malfunction, look out for this letter and for the symbol of a cord entering an outlet with fire in the background. 

D: Metals can also result in fires. If you’re trying to fight a fire that originated from a combustible metal, reach for this safety tool. The symbol associated is the letter D inside of a star. 

K: The last item on our list is K. This letter is associated with the image of a pan with a raging fire in it. These are great for stopping fires that were started because of oils, deep fryers, fats, etc. 

Fire Safety Tips for a Boat

Fire extinguishers should always be present on a responsible owner’s boat. Be sure to have the proper equipment for whatever emergency you may have to deal with based upon the fire. Having one may not be enough if you plan on cooking, sleeping, or painting on the boat at the same time. Boating is amazing, but safety is the most important thing to consider when you’re on the water.

Marine Engine Parts Suppliers and Repairs

If you are in need of marine engine parts or repairs, be sure to get in touch with Marine Diesel Specialists! Our experts have years of experience in the field and have put that expertise to good use by providing the best services and products in the business. Feel free to take a look at our marine engine blog to learn more about all things related to this field.


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