Elements of Fire

In order to understand how fire extinguishers work, you first need to know a little bit about fire.

Fire requires 3 elements to ignite and burn;

  • Oxidizing agent – Usually oxygen
  • Fuel – Wood, plastic, rubber, petroleum products (gas, diesel), etc.
  • Heat – Cigarettes, lighters, electricity, sparks, etc.


The Fire Triangle

  • A fire naturally occurs when the three elements are present and combined in the right mixture.
  • The elements cause a chemical reaction, which is fire.
  • This means fire is not a thing, but actually an event.
  • A fire can be prevented or extinguished by removing any one of the elements in the fire triangle.