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Chimney Fire Supression

Post in 'The Hearth Room - Wood Stoves and Fireplaces' started by chris2879, Nov 16, 2012.

  1. chris2879

    chris2879 Member

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    I am looking for chimney fire supression extinguishers to have on hand just in case of one occurs.

    The two products i have found are chimfex and firex.

    What are your thoughts on them and which is better? Like the firex because it says you can just throw it in the fire, compared to the other one you need to light and out next to the fire (according to their websites).

    Thoughts?

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  2. Shmudda

    Shmudda Burning Hunk

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    honestly.....if you have an exterior cleanout and you can get to your chimney from this cleanout keep a BIG class ABC fire extinguisher handy. I had a fire once and knocked the bottom cap off the chimney and blew the extinguisher up the chimney and it worked perfectly!
  3. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    I doubt that Summit insert with flex liner has a cleanout cap.

    I am partial to the Chimfex because they have been around so long and were at one time a favorite of fire departments. Two or three years ago I bought a case of them and sold them to forum members at my cost.
    raybonz likes this.
  4. raybonz

    raybonz Minister of Fire

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    I bought a Chimfex on clearance at Walmart for $5.00 2 years ago (bought 2 more for BIL as house "cooling" gift too as they have 2 stoves) and also installed a fire extinguisher in the stove area and hope I never need them. My insurance company recommended one in the stove room and kitchen and I thought it was a good idea and followed their advice..

    Ray
  5. Tramontana

    Tramontana Member

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    Last winter after finishing the install of my Jotul, I installed a wall mounted 10lb 4A-60 BC rated fire extinguisher, a 2D 100 lumen LED Mag Light and a new in box Chimfex just inside the doorway to our hearth room.

    I later stopped by one of our local community colleges, and spoke with the Chief in charge of the fire fighter training program and asked his opinion of my preparations. He admitted that he didn't know much about Chimfex, and also that in his opinion, I had done more than the "average" homeowner. Unfortunately, I realize that his calls, on "average", are most often the least prepared.

    I write all of this, not to brag, but to point out the need for preparedness for all of us who choose to burn.

    Please take measures to improve your homes as you see fit. I myself think that several extinguishers, hard wired CO/smoke detectors and having a Chimfex on hand are the least that we can do to protect ourselves and our loved ones.

    Cheers!
    corey21, Beer Belly and raybonz like this.
  6. raybonz

    raybonz Minister of Fire

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    Tramontana I think we're on the same page..

    Ray
  7. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    When I would go to mail Chimfex to forum members I had to send them Parcel Post so they didn't go on an airplane per Postal Service rules. When the clerk would ask the standard question "Anything perishable, flammable or potentially hazardous?" I would answer "Yes, that is why it says flammable on the package.". Then every time they would say "What is it?" and I would reply "A fire extinguisher." and get a strange look. ;lol
  8. Tramontana

    Tramontana Member

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    One thing I question is what effect either the dry chem or the Chimfex will have on the enamel finish of our Jotul. Obviously, I'm not going to let a chimney fire continue, nor a fire outside of the firebox, but I wonder if there are better alternatives that won't cause further damage.

    Anyone know or have experience with this?

    Cheers!
  9. raybonz

    raybonz Minister of Fire

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    I can't imagine it having any effect to the outside enamel finish since it burns inside the stove..

    Ray
  10. Tramontana

    Tramontana Member

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    Dry chem can be corrosive, and the thermal shock of smothering a fire would be of concern.
  11. raybonz

    raybonz Minister of Fire

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    Beats a chimney fire any day.. I believe it robs oxygen and suffocates the fire if this puts out a chimney fire it will be much less harmful than a fire department putting the fire out..

    Ray
    WellSeasoned likes this.
  12. Tramontana

    Tramontana Member

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    I fully agree, and will not hesitate to "pull the pin" should a chimney fire ignite. Again, I'm curious if there is perhaps a better choice is what I'm asking?

    Cheers!
  13. raybonz

    raybonz Minister of Fire

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  14. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    There isn't going to be thermal shock from smothering the fire. That stove and chimney will still be plenty hot. For a good long while.
    raybonz likes this.
  15. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    ABC chem is "slightly corrosive" to metal . . . however I suspect if the clean up is done within a few hours/days you would be fine. Thermal shock should not be an issue with most extinguishers since most folks do not have CO2 or water extinguishers in their home.
  16. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    This may be the case with the Chimfex, but with ABC extinguishing agents the fire is extinguished not by suffocating the fire (such as a carbon dioxide extinguisher), but rather in interferring with the chemical process that allows heat, fuel and oxygen to come together and burn . . . perhaps someone a lot smarter than me can explain it better. BC powders which are found in some home "kitchen" fire extinguishers also affect the fire on the chemical reaction side of the fire "tetrahedron" (what elements a fire needs), but they also form a soapy crusty layer which has the added effect of partially suffocating the fire and partially preventing a combustion source for reigniting the fuel source.
  17. Kerovick

    Kerovick New Member

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    Where can someone purchase Chimfex? Google is failing me.
  18. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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  19. raybonz

    raybonz Minister of Fire

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  20. tlc1976

    tlc1976 New Member

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    This is good to know. I've burned wood for years, and grew up with wood heat, and never knew there was a product to help suppress a chimney fire.
  21. raybonz

    raybonz Minister of Fire

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    I should have bought out Walmart when they cleared them out for $5.00 each.. Bought 3, gave 2 away and left a bunch behind..

    Ray
  22. bag of hammers

    bag of hammers Minister of Fire

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    Outside air might be a problem - what do you do if you have an OAK and you need to light the Chimfex and shut down all air? I'm getting my outside air set up now (finally) - do I need to install some kind of block off cover or something close to the wall vent cap where the air feeds in so I can cover it off quickly? Hoping I never have to do this, but would like to be prepared. What do you folks with OAK's do?
  23. raybonz

    raybonz Minister of Fire

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    No because your air is still controlled by the stove air adjustment it makes no difference..

    Ray
  24. Pallet Pete

    Pallet Pete Guest

    I keep a chimfex on hand at all times ! It does not matter to me if the stove is ruined as long as the people inside the house are safe and the house is still standing. There have been a few chimney fires in the last couple of years near me and ( 2 people have died. ) The fire chief says that without a doubt if they had a chimfex they would be alive. Thats good enough for me.

    Aslo keeping in mind that if you burn dry wood and clean the chimney you have a low chance of a chimney fire as well.

    Pete
    raybonz likes this.
  25. bag of hammers

    bag of hammers Minister of Fire

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    Thanks Ray for the sanity check. Guess it was kind of a silly question.

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