Lithium Battery Fire Fighting

Lithium versus Lithium-Ion Batteries

These two battery types are often confused but are actually unrelated.  Lithium batteries are non-rechargeable or ‘primary’ high capacity cells.  They are commonly found in everything from watch batteries to ‘AA’ size batteries in consumer electronics (cameras etc.).  Lithium-ion batteries are rechargeable batteries used in everything from laptops to electric cars and don’t actually contain lithium in it’s metallic form.

lithium battery fire

Fire Fighting Lithium Batteries

Lithium batteries are a class D fire risk (flammable metal) and need a specialist fire extinguisher which has been specifically designed for that risk.  Argos Fire provide a range of Class D extinguishers which are suitable for fighting lithium battery fires as shown below.

Fire Fighting Lithium-Ion Batteries

lithium-ion battery fireLithium-ion batteries are not a class D risk because they don’t contain lithium in a metallic form.  They are actually a class A risk but with some caveats.  The danger with lithium-ion battery fires is with the electrolyte in the batteries rather than the lithium salts.  Every battery uses a different electrolyte solution, but many contain Fluorine, which readily combines with the hydrogen found in water used for fire fighting to make Hydrogen Fluoride.

Using water could be deadly

This is a highly toxic gas which can cause blindness and respiratory failure, and in aqueous form (Hydrofluoric Acid) is highly corrosive and absorbed through the skin.  So although lithium-ion batteries are in theory a class A risk and can be extinguished with plain water, this can cause dangerous and potentially deadly side effects.  Argos Fire provide a range of extinguishers specifically designed for fighting lithium-ion battery fires – which not only extinguish the fire but also neutralise the fluorine compounds and completely remove the deadly side effects.

Lithium Battery Fire Extinguishers

Our Kitemarked F-500 fire extinguishers offer impressive fire ratings, as well as excellent value without compromising on quality.

All the fire extinguishers we sell are BS EN3 Kitemarked and CE Marked.F500-extinguisher

Water and F-500 EA

Water Fire Extinguishers are ideal for extinguishing Class A Fires. The addition of F-500 EA dramatically increases the cooling ability of the extinguisher and provides fuel encapsulation. This 9 litre unit (also available is 6 litre units) is ideal for first responders handling
Class A or Class B fires, whether it’s non-polar (like gasoline, diesel fuel or oil) or polar (like ethanol or the ethanol- blended fuels we use in cars today). F-500 EA also has excellent burn-back resistance, so once the fire is out, you can move on to the next hazard without worrying the fire will re-ignite.

DEKRA recommended

F-500 EA fire extinguishers are the only product (recommended by DEKRA as suitable for A & B Class fires) for use with Lithium-ion battery fires. This is because F-500 deals with the free radicals that occur in a Lithium-ion fire that cause a chain reaction, sustaining the three elements needed to keep a fire burning.  As an encapsulator agent, F-500 wraps itself around the free radicals (tetrahedrons) at the molecular level, interrupting the three elements – heat, fuel and oxygen for a fire to be sustained. This makes it the ideal suppressant for domestic and commercial use as it can be used safely in the home or office where many Lithium-ion powered products are found.

Effective Hydrocarbon spill control

As an encapsulator agent, the F-500 EA Fire Extinguisher can also be used for hydrocarbon spill control. Instead of spreading out absorbent material, which becomes flammable after application, the F-500 EA solution renders the fuel non-flammable and non-ignitable. A single fire extinguisher can easily encapsulate a 2 litre fuel spill in minutes, perfect for small fuel station spills.

The F-500 EA Fire Extinguisher comes with a spray nozzle, which has a spray delivery pattern for better penetration and broader coverage.

  • 6ltr & 9ltr water is BS EN 3 Kitemarked
  • CE Marked
  • Suitable for office use
  • Plastic base for added protection
  • Easy to read pressure gauge
  • High quality corrosion resistant finish
  • Supplied complete with wall mounting bracket
  • Polyethylene internal lining
  • Full range of spare parts available
  • 5 year warranty

F-500 Extinguisher rating