Importance of Extinguishing a Fire ProperlyWhen it comes to enjoying time around the fire pit, it is vital to ensure that it is extinguished properly to avoid any accidents. Embers that fly away from a fire can cause unwanted fires, leading to potential destruction of property, wildlife habitats, and even people’s lives. It is essential to take the necessary precautions when extinguishing a fire and make sure that it is completely out before leaving.
How Water Puts Out a FireWater is one of the most effective ways to extinguish a fire, including a fire pit. When water is poured over a fire, it works by cooling down the temperature of the flames and the fuel. The water also creates steam, which helps to smother the fire and cut off any oxygen supply the fire needs to thrive. As a result, the flames are extinguished.
Using water to extinguish a fire has many benefits such as:
- Water is widely available in nature, and accessibility to it is easy.
- It is affordable, and you don’t need specialized equipment to use it.
- Water doesn’t leave any residue behind that could flare up after the fire has been put out.
Safety Precautions with Water and FireUsing water to extinguish a fire pit can be effective, but it is essential to take precautions to ensure that you are not putting yourself in danger. Here are some safety tips to keep in mind when using water to extinguish a fire pit:
- Wear protective gear such as gloves and goggles since hot embers can fly when you pour water on them.
- Never use a hose to put out a fire pit. Hoses are not safe to use on fires and can create steam that can cause burns or get you injured.
- Make sure to pour the water slowly and away from yourself to avoid getting burned by the steam or any flying debris.
- Never pour gasoline, lighter fluid, or any other flammable liquids on the fire pit to speed up the extinguishing process. These substances can lead to an explosion or a fireball.
What Else Can Be Used to Extinguish a Fire?Apart from water, there is a range of other materials that you can use to extinguish a fire, including baking soda, sand, and fire extinguishers. Each of these materials has its benefits and should be considered depending on the circumstances. For example, if you’re using a fire extinguisher, you should know how to use it before lighting up the fire pit.
Here are some alternatives to water:
- Baking soda – Baking soda removes oxygen and absorbs heat, making it perfect for smothering fires. One can sprinkle it over the fire pit slowly to stop the flames.
- Sand – Sand is useful for smothering small flames and is often found in beach locations. It is also an excellent choice if there is no water source nearby.
- Fire extinguishers – Fire extinguishers are mostly used indoors, but some are designed for outdoor use. They work by cutting oxygen supply to the fire. During camping, it is crucial to have one if your campsite is near a wildfire zone.
Tips for Using Water to Extinguish a FirepitUsing water rightly to put out a fire requires some skills to keep yourself and nearby property safe. Here are some tips for using water to extinguish a fire pit effectively:
- Use a shovel to spread the fire pit wood out before pouring the water. This creates an even spreading of the water, covering the entire fire.
- Pour water slowly. Dumping or pouring water too fast can cause embers to fly out, causing potential harm.
- Avoid stirring the ashes after pouring water. Stirring the ashes can reignite an area that hasn’t fully cooled down, creating potential hazards.
Common Fire Pit Mistakes to AvoidUsing fire pits incorrectly can be dangerous. Here are some common mistakes that people make and should avoid:
- Starting a fire without first checking to see if the area is suitable for open fires. Not all campsites allow open fires.
- Using gasoline to start a fire. It’s essential to use safer materials like lighter fluid to avoid potential accidents.
- Burning plastic waste in their fire pit. Some plastics burn and release toxic chemicals that are harmful to the environment and human health.
- Abandoning a fire pit before putting out the fire completely. Most wildfires are as a result of abandoned fires that were not adequately extinguished.
How to Dispose of the Ashes After Using Water to Extinguish the FirepitOnce the fire is completely put out, the ashes can still be useful in the garden as fertilizer. To dispose of the ashes, follow these steps:
- Make sure all the embers are extinguished and allow the ash to cool down. Also, avoid moving ash when hot or warm.
- When the ash is cool enough to handle, place it in a metal container with a well-fitted lid. Do not dispose of ashes in cardboard, plastic, or paper since they can ignite again.
- Ensure the container is placed on a non-flammable surface and far away from any flammable materials.
- Keep the container out of reach of children or pets and dispose of it safely in designated areas.