We have all worried whether our oven will catch on fire when we are using it. It’s one of those things that can happen and knowing what to do in the event of an oven fire could be the difference between containing the fire, or the fire escalating into something far worse than a small oven fire. Is it safe to use an extinguisher on an oven fire or will it ruin your oven?
If you are using a properly rated fire extinguisher for an oven fire and clean up the residue as soon as possible, your oven will not be ruined when using a fire extinguisher to put out an oven fire.
If you are searching for the best way to protect your home against oven fires and want all of the vital information about how to clean up after using one, keep reading! I have found all of the information that you need to keep your family safe and worry less while using your oven for cooking foods that may contain high levels of grease or oil.
If you are interested in a good oven cleaner for after using your fire extinguisher, here is a good one.
Your # 1 priority is keeping your family safe. As a firefighter, I recommend everyone has updated smoke detectors that don’t require battery changes, like these ones from Kidde, a fire extinguisher, like this one from Amerex, and a fire escape ladder if you have bedrooms above the first floor, I recommend this one from Hausse.
For more information about fire extinguishers, read: Can a Fire Extinguisher Be Used More Than Once? and Storing a Fire Extinguisher: 5 Things to Keep in Mind
Will The Oven Still Work?
Typically, using a fire extinguisher won’t ruin your oven.
However, you have to make sure you are using a fire extinguisher that is rated for home use and will put out the fire and not make it worse. When you are dealing with grease or oil, you have to remember that those types of fires respond differently than a combustible item would such as paper or cloth.
You are also going to want to make sure you are cleaning up any residue that has been left behind from the fire extinguisher as soon as you have the fire contained, and the oven has cooled. If you wait, you could ruin your oven.
Remember, if you are using a standard fire extinguisher versus a carbon dioxide fire extinguisher, it will leave a chemical residue on anything you have sprayed the fire extinguisher on. You will want to make sure you are cleaning that up properly and taking safety precautions while doing so.
How to Put out a Cooking Fire
If you are using your oven and a fire starts, the first thing you are going to want to do is to turn off the oven and keep the door closed! Most of the time, just by doing that, the fire will die down and ultimately go out. When you cut a fire off from any oxygen, it will kill the fire.
If that doesn’t work and you need to break out the fire extinguisher, make sure you follow the PASS technique. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) breaks down the PASS technique with fool-proof directions to use the fire extinguisher correctly.
Grab your fire extinguisher, and follow these steps to put out the fire:
- P – Pull out the safety pin from the fire extinguisher
- A – Aim the extinguisher low toward the base of the fire
- S – Squeeze the handle
- S – Sweep the spray from side to side spraying all over the fire
Cleaning up After a Kitchen Fire
After you have successfully put out the fire in your oven, you are going to want to clean up any mess left behind. Make sure you clean up as soon as your oven has cooled enough to start cleaning, or corrosion of your appliance could occur. According to Round Rock Appliance Repair, there are steps you need to take to clean your oven after a fire properly.
Five steps for cleaning your oven after a fire:
- The first thing you are going to want to do before you even start cleaning is to put a mask over your face and wear plastic or rubber gloves. You are cleaning up chemicals, so you want to take precautions. Chemicals can cause irritations to your skin, and you don’t want to breathe them in while cleaning, either.
- Grab your vacuum with a hose attachment. You are going to want to use your vacuum to suck up any debris inside your oven before you start cleaning.
- If there are spots that you couldn’t reach with your vacuum, grab your dustpan and brush and remove the rest of the debris or dry powder from those tight spots.
- Take a sponge and wet it. You will then take the wet sponge and wipe down your oven completely. You will need to rinse your sponge several times while you are doing this step. By doing this, you should be able to remove most of the mess from using the fire extinguisher.
- Use an oven cleaner inside of your oven. Follow all instructions on the cleaner. Using an oven cleaner will remove any leftover debris and allow your oven to be ready to use again.
Do not use the self-cleaning function on your oven if your oven has that option.
If the fire has destroyed your oven to the point where you don’t feel comfortable using it, you may need to replace your appliance. But this is not usually the case.
Types of Fire Extinguishers and Their Uses
According to “Fire Extinguishers 101: Different Types of Fire Extinguishers for Your Home,” if you use the wrong kind of fire extinguisher for your fire, it could counteract as an accelerant and cause even more damage than what it would have caused if you used the correct fire extinguisher.
Here is the list of some fire extinguisher classes and what to use them for:
- Class A: Class A fire extinguishers are used for fires that involve ordinary combustible materials. Those types of materials include any wood, paper, plastics, fabric, or cardboard. They are highly flammable, and homes are mostly made up of these, making your home flammable. Since they are common in homes, this type of fire extinguisher is an excellent option to have in your home. If the fire extinguisher is labeled Class A only, it is a water extinguisher.
- Class B: If you are looking for a fire extinguisher that works for flammable or combustible liquids, you are going to want a Class B. They work on gasoline, kerosene, grease. Class B and C extinguishers are dry chemical extinguishers and will leave a residue when used. If you are looking for one that won’t leave a residue when you are using it, you can try getting a carbon dioxide extinguisher. They are a good idea for your kitchen if you need to use them on an oven or stove fire since they don’t leave any extra residue that you will have to clean off.
- Class C: Class C extinguishers are used on electrical equipment. They are primarily used on appliances, wires, circuit breakers, and outlets in your home. You don’t want to use a Class A water-based extinguisher on an electrical fire because it can cause electrical shock.
- Class K: Class K is for fires involving cooking oils. These types of fires are usually in kitchens and restaurants. This is the type of extinguisher you want to have in your kitchen for any grease or oil fires that may be caused by cooking.
Overall, a Class ABC extinguisher is the best option for your home, such as: the Amerex B402 Class ABC Fire Extinguisher. This way, you are covered for most possible fires in your home. You may also want a Class K extinguisher for your kitchen.
For more information on the different types of fire extinguishers, watch this video:
If you have a fire in your oven and you need the help of a fire extinguisher, rest easy knowing that you can use one and not completely ruin your oven and it can be cleaned. Just make sure you have the proper fire extinguisher in your home to take care of an oven fire if one occurs.
Preventing oven fires is simple, keep your oven clean and keep an eye on extra greasy or oily foods that you are cooking.