Car fires can be incredibly dangerous to you and your loved ones. One of the worst aspects of these incidents is that you can be left stranded with a growing blaze to deal with if they occur while you’re on the road.
Here, we will have a look at the leading causes, how you can prevent them, and offer a car fire extinguisher solution developed by the experts at LifeSafe.
Top Causes of Car Fires
It shouldn’t be surprising, but failing to do the proper maintenance for your vehicle can be disastrous. Many people put off garage checks or ignore warning signs because they don’t seem like an immediate threat.
But if you do not do anything about them, these little things can build up to a massive fire hazard. The main reason for this is that the inner workings of your car rely on several chemical and mechanical processes that depend on fuels and oils to function.
Most of the materials are highly combustible and are only safe when kept in perfect working condition.
Take your engine for instance; the fluid inside is necessary, but it is also flammable and could leak without regular checks. After that, there only needs to be a spark from a faulty wire for the whole thing to ignite.
There may be inherent flaws from the manufacturers themselves that can be extremely hazardous.
The main concern here is you cannot proactively do until the makers have detected it.
The good news is that they certainly will and when they do, they will take immediate action. If it’s severe enough, they will recall all the affected models, though they may just direct you to a mechanic.
The other thing to remember is that it is rare that a design fault alone will cause combustion.
Like the issues we spoke of in the previous section, the biggest threat is they can exacerbate any other potential hazards.
Be sure to keep an eye out for any letters or emails from the manufacturer, as it could contain important recall information.
One area of the car that can cause the most severe damage is engine fires. Now, it will not instantly combust or burst into flames itself, but that doesn’t mean it won’t do any harm.
The risk comes from the fact that when the engine is working, it generates massive amounts of heat. It can produce too much at times, commonly causing it to overheat.
Your car uses many flammable fluids like fuel and coolant to work. An overheated engine can cause chemicals to spill out of their containers, spraying into the engine or exhaust in the process. It may then set alight.
If you notice your engine light constantly blinking, it might be time to visit a mechanic.
If you find yourself in a car crash, there are going to be a myriad of concerns.
However, your vehicle may have suffered severe damage even you have no injuries.
While there are protective barriers in the engine to limit this, they do not always work. If any of the flammable liquids were to leak, they could set on fire.
If you are in a collision and see flames, turn off the ignition and get everyone out of the car to a safe distance.
DO NOT OPEN THE BONNET, as this can feed oxygen to the fire.
Instead, release the bonnet so fire emergency services can extinguish the flames. Keep passengers and passer-by’s away from the vehicle.
Fuel leaks are the leading cause of vehicle fires. Inadequate maintenance, flawed design, overheated engines, and car crashes can all result in a fuel leak.
However, they can also happen randomly without any warning signs.
It is because fuels have a very low point; that is to say, they will ignite at a temperature far below most other material.
For standard petrol, it is around −43 °C, while diesel fuel flashpoint is -52 °C.
If f either of the fuels reaches this temperature, a small spark will cause the car to burst into flames.
To avoid fuel leaks, ensure your car is properly maintained and regularly checked by a registered mechanic.
If you do smell gas when you are driving, try to find the leak as quickly as possible.
The Stay Safe 5-in1 Fire Extinguisher
While any of the things on this list could cause a fire on their own, it is quite unlikely.
The real danger comes when a combination of these factors comes into play, such as an overheated engine causing a fuel leak to ignite. For this reason, you should always be vigilant that your car is in perfect working order.
Of course, even if you do everything right, you can never totally protect against the threat of car fires. If one does happen, it can quickly spread and grow out of control, causing immense damage as it does.
However, you can stop the blaze before it gets out of hand if you have the right car fire extinguisher.
LifeSafe has developed the Stay Safe 5-in-1 Fire Extinguisher, a 200ml aerosol extinguishing solution, that is lightweight and highly portable. It easily fits in most gloveboxes, so you can take it with you while you are driving.
It utilizes our patented formula, which is among the eco-friendliest available on the market. There is no toxic waste left behind, which is always a bonus. It is the fast-acting, effective way to deal with a small car fire.