Investing and storing a fire extinguisher inside your car is highly recommended. Whether you are driving on the road, race track or even off-road, there may be a chance of the car catching fire. Even if you don’t use it on your own car, you may be able to save the day for someone else if their vehicle has caught fire.
If you require a quick answer, the best car fire extinguisher is the H3R Performance HG100C, which is compact, lightweight, easy to use, rechargeable and comes in an excellent chrome finish. However, if you are on a tight budget, the popular FIAFESA5 alternative is perfect for keeping inside of your car.
In terms of rating the car fire extinguishers within this article, we based our recommendations upon plenty of research and multiple factors. The factors that we considered included their UL rating, discharge rate, size, certifications, mounting capabilities, extinguishing agent, warranty and value for money.
Table of Contents
- The Best Fire Extinguisher For Cars
- How We Rated The Car Fire Extinguishers
- Car Fire Extinguisher Mount
- Automotive Fire Extinguishers Buying Guide
Car Fire Extinguisher Comparison
|Auto Fire Extinguisher||Discharge Range||UL Numeric Rating|
|H3R Performance HG100C||6 to 8 Feet||1-B:C|
|First Alert FIAFESA5||6 to 8 Feet||5-B:C|
|Kidde 21005779 Pro 210||10 to 15 Feet||2-A:10-B:C|
|Buckeye 45100||4 to 8 Feet||5-B:C|
|Fire Command Aerosol||8 to 10 Feet||Not Rated|
|Amerex B417T||10 to 15 Feet||1A:10B:C|
|Kidde FX511||10 to 14 Feet||5-B:C|
Deciding on a car fire extinguisher that best suits your requirement can be difficult. For example, due to the different types of fires that are determined by their class, you need to choose one that’s suitable. Another factor to consider is the size, which is dependent upon where it’s stored or mounted. The most common places to mount the extinguisher include the drivers seat, roll bar or securing it within the trunk.
If you drive a race or drift car, ensuring that you have a working auto fire extinguisher is essential. Even storing them in your daily driver is recommended because cars can catch fire for a whole range of unexplained reasons.
Below is a list of the best car fire extinguishers that are suitable for automotive use and can be used to put out class A, B or C fires.
The Best Fire Extinguisher For Cars
1. H3R Performance HG100C Car Fire Extinguisher
The H3R Performance HG100C is a premium car fire extinguisher with a unique chrome finish. It’s not all about the aesthetics either because it uses a clean Halguard agent, which is highly effective for automotive fires.
A standout feature of this particular model is that it’s by far the most aesthetically pleasing auto fire extinguisher on the market and the brand even offer a matching chrome mounting bracket too.
Other features of the H3R Performance HG100C include:
- Designed specifically for automotive use
- Measures up as 10 x 3.6 x 2.6 in size
- u/L rating of 1B:C
- Halotron 1 extinguishing agent
- High gloss chrome finish
- Made in the USA
- Discharge range of 6 to 8 feet
- Matching mount available
- Steel cylinders and an all metal valve construction
- Includes a five year warranty
- EPA approved
Overall, the H3R Performance HG100C is a premium car fire extinguisher that not only not looks great but is also highly rated for automotive use. It creates no thermal shock to electronics and leave zero mess or damage to the car’s surface. It’s also backed by an impressive 5 year warranty for complete peace of mind.Check it Out
2. FIAFESA5 Automotive Fire Extinguisher
The FIAFESA5 is an auto fire extinguisher that’s most effective against liquid or electrical fires. It’s a UL rated 5-B:C extinguisher and the brand provides a five year warranty for peace of mind. For extra value for the money, this model even comes with its very own mounting bracket as shown in the image above.
Unlike other similar sized extinguishers, this unit has a large and easy to read gauge, which allows you to quickly check the capacity left in the extinguisher.
Other features of the FIAFESA5 Extinguisher include:
- UL rated 5-B:C
- Weighs 1.38 LBS
- Mounting bracket included
- Button to test the current pressure
- Easy to read instructions for usage
- Suitable for gasoline, oil, grease and electrical fires
- Includes a 5 year warranty
The First Alert Auto fire extinguisher is a compact and affordable option that can be stored easily inside of the car. The FIAFESA5 extinguisher also has many intuitive features such as the large gauge and pressure tester, which makes it standout from the rest.Check it Out
3. Kidde Pro 210 Auto Fire Extinguisher
The largest automotive fire extinguisher within this article is the Kidde Pro 210, which is ideal for storing in the trunk. It can be mounted to a roll bar but you will need a mounting bracket that can withstand the 4 LBS construction of this extinguisher. In terms of its performance, it’s UL rated at 2-A:10-B:C and is capable of tackling class A, B and C fires with an impressive discharge rate.
Other features of the Kidde Pro 210 include:
- 2-A:10-B:C UL rated
- Operates at 100 PSI
- Discharge time of 13 to 15 seconds
- Range between 10 to 15 feet
- Corrosion resistant aluminum cylinder
- Powder coated finish
- Multipurpose dry chemical agent
- Instructions of use listed on the extinguisher
- Easy to read pressure gauge
- Weighs 4 LBS
The Kidde Pro 210 is an excellent all-round car fire extinguisher that handles a variety of different fire types. It’s also rechargeable, which means that you can keep the heavy duty extinguisher unit for many years. There is also a six year limited warranty for peace of mind, which is impressive considering its price.
Check it Out
4. Buckeye 45100 Automotive Fire Extinguisher
The Buckeye brand offer a variety of fire extinguishers but the 4500 model is one of the best options for cars. However, it isn’t the cheapest, which makes it less popular than many of the alternatives. On the flipside, it’s a large car fire extinguisher (5.25 x 7.25 x 17.375 inch in size) and contains 5 LBS of extinguishing agent.
Other features of the Buckeye 45100 include:
- 5-B:C UL rating
- Discharge time of 9 seconds
- Discharge range between 4 to 8 feet
- 5 LBS of carbon dioxide agent
- Color coded pressure gauges
- Industrial grade steel and aluminum cylinders
- Polyester powder coating
- Rechargeable tank
- USCG approved
Overall, the Buckeye 45100 is a premium car fire extinguisher that’s suitable for class B or C fires. This is due to the fact that it uses a non-conductive cleaning agent that’s most effective on electronic equipment fires. The main drawback is the premium price but it’s built to the highest of standards and it won’t disappoint.Check it Out
5. Amerex B417T Fire Extinguisher For Car
The Amerex brand are well-known in the US for their fire extinguishers that are available in a variety of shapes and sizes. The B417T model in particular features a long and thin construction and is also a dry chemical formula that’s suitable for putting out class A, B or C fires.
Other features of the Amerex B417T include:
- UL rating of 1A:10B:C
- Discharge range of 15 feet
- Discharge time of 10 seconds
- Made in the USA
- Uses a Monoammonium phosphate agent
- Operating pressure of 195 PSI
- All steel cylinder construction
- Includes a car mounting bracket
The Amerex B417T is an auto fire extinguisher that’s built to last with an all-metal construction. It’s a high performing option that’s suitable for class A, B or C fires and even comes with a mounting bracket for extra bang for your buck.Check it Out
6. Kidde FX511 Automobile Fire Extinguisher
Another large auto fire extinguisher by the Kidde brand is the new and improved FX511 model. It has a distinctive white powder coated finish that provides corrosion protection and looks great when mounted inside of the car.
In terms of the performance of this auto fire extinguisher, it has a discharge range of 10 to 14 feet and a discharge time of 8 to 10 seconds.
Other features of the Kidde FX511 include:
- 5-B:C UL rated
- Operates at 100 PSI
- Easy to pull safety pin
- Pressure check device
- 3.25 x 4.25 x 10.95 inches in size
- Sodium bicarbonate finish
- Rust and impact resistant nylon handle
- Powder coated finish
- Clear instructions with graphics
The Kidde FX511 is an affordable car fire extinguisher that’s designed to last with a heavy duty powder coated construction. It’s suitable for use on liquid or electrical fires and also comes with a 2 year warranty for peace of mind.Check it Out
How We Rated The Car Fire Extinguishers
Although car fire extinguishers aren’t found in the majority of cars, they are certainly a popular aftermarket product that people install. In terms of how we rated the above recommendations, we based them upon a number of factors. The factors that were considered included UL rating, discharge rate, size, certifications, mounting capabilities, extinguishing agent, warranty and value for money.
Car Fire Extinguisher Mount
Rather than simply storing the auto fire extinguisher in the trunk, you can choose to use a mount. These come in the form of a mounting bracket or a universal strap, which ensures that the fire extinguisher is secured in place and doesn’t get lost in the trunk. Not only does a bracket secure it in place, it also prevent the solution becoming shaken, which could potentially lessen the performance of the formula.
Using a high quality mount can improve the aesthetics of your car and it can actually become a unique feature. Some brands such as H3R provide their own mounting brackets, which look great when used together. However, there are plenty of alternatives to choose from in case you decide to buy from a different brand.
Below is a list of three mounting brackets that are ideal for auto fire extinguishers and can be easily mounted inside of the car.
1. The Bracketeer Car Extinguisher Mount
One of the most popular fire extinguisher mounts in the US is called “The Bracketeer”, which the brand states is one of the best on the market. It’s a universal fit and has an adjustable width design to clamp onto the seat rails or seat mounting points of your car. It’s also compatible with cradles supplied with most of the recommendations in this article or 2/2.5 LBS extinguishers.
Other features of The Bracketeer Mount include:
- High strength A572 steel
- Durable powder coated finish
- Stainless steel bolts and Allen keys
- Installs in less than 15 minutes
- Adjustable width design
- Multiple hole spacing
Overall, the Bracketeer mount is ideal for mounting to the bottom seat rail and is a universal fit for most cars. Unlike cheaper alternatives, it’s built to the highest of standards using high grade and stainless steel components.Check it Out
2. Drake Off Road FIREX-MNT-DOR Mount
The Drake Off Road fire extinguisher mount is an alternative to the seat rail mount. It’s usually mounted to the roll bar or cage but can also be mounted to the seat rail. In order to maximize the durability of this extinguisher mount, it’s constructed from a high quality 6061-T6 billet aluminum.
Other features of the Drake FIREX-MNT-DOR include:
- Easily mounted to roll bars or cages
- Slick gloss black finish
- Heavy duty aluminum construction
- Quick release functionality
- NHRA approved
- Suitable for multiple mounting positions
- Includes a one year warranty
Overall, the Drake FIREX-MNT-DOR is an excellent all-round fire extinguisher mount for cars that looks excellent when installed to cars with roll bars installed.Check it Out
3. Bartact TAOFEH Roll Bar Mount
The Bartact TAOFEH is another popular option that’s designed to mount the fire extinguisher to a roll bar. The brand state that it’s been built to the “highest standard of excellence” and is compatible with most 2.5 to 5.0 LBS extinguishers. Unlike other cheaper alternatives, it uses powder coated steel hardware as opposed to cheap plastic.
Other features of the Bartact TAOFEH include:
- Powder coated steel hardware
- Padded roll bar racking
- Suitable for 2.5 to 5.0 LBS extinguishers
- Available in black or red
- Made in the USA
The Bartact TAOFEH is a more affordable alternative to the Drake FIREX-MNT-DOR alternative that also mounts the extinguisher to the roll bar. Unlike similar priced alternatives, it uses powder coated steel hardware that can withstand far more punishment, which may be required for more heavy duty usage.Check it Out
Automotive Fire Extinguishers Buying Guide
According to the USFA statistics, it’s estimated that 171,500 car fires occurred in the USA. This resulted in 345 deaths, 1,300 injuries and $1.1 billion in property loss.
If each of these vehicles were equipped with a car fire extinguisher, this figure would have been reduced quite significantly. By taking precautions and installing an auto fire extinguisher in your car, you can prevent the fire spreading through your car and causing further damage occurs.
To help you make an informed buying decision, we have produced the below guide regarding car fire extinguishers.
What Causes Car Fires?
Cars simply do not spontaneously set on fire without a root cause. Some causes are due to manufacturer design faults, which often results in thousands of cars being recalled. For example, Mercedes Benz had to recall 308,000 cars due to a potential fire hazard.
Other causes of car fires include:
- Car crash causing flammable liquids to leak out
- Arson of your car via criminals
- Mechanical fuel leaks within the engine
- Electrical short circuits
- Engine overheating to dangerous temperature
- Exhaust issues
- … and much more
The new era of automotive technology has seen hybrid and electric vehicles become popular on the road. These use sophisticated car batteries that are required to be either charged via the high-tech hybrid system or an EV charger.
This may seem safer without any flammable gasoline required for power generation but there are many case studies of electric vehicles shooting up in flames.
An arson attack or car crash is pretty much impossible to avoid but the other causes can be with proper car maintenance checks. For example, if you have noticed that your car is overheating on a regular occasion, you shouldn’t just leave it to fix itself.
Types of Car Fire Extinguishers
Fire extinguishers can be split into different types based from their UL numeric rating as listed in the table. The three main types of fire extinguisher for car usage are usually class A, B and C ratings.
Class A fire extinguishers are designed for to put out ordinary combustibles and contains monoammonium phosphate.
Class B works best at dealing with flammable liquids such as gasoline, oil or paint and it uses a monoammonium phosphate or sodium biocarbonate.
Class C fire extinguishers uses a non-conductive agent and is used for electrical fires, which is a common cause of many car fires.
Fire extinguishers that offer the best value for money are units that can be recharged. Many can only be used once and even if they aren’t used, the agent may expire and no longer be effective. Although a rechargeable unit will be more expensive, you will be able to save money in the long run by refiling the agent once used or expired.
Storing and Mounting
Having a fire extinguisher readily available for a car fire is crucial. However, not everyone will have room in their car to store the large auto fire extinguishers. This is where the smaller alternatives come useful and you can then keep the larger one in your garage.
In terms of where to mount the fire extinguisher, it’s a matter of personal preference. The most popular locations are the roll bars, bottom of the driver seat, side of trunk and many other areas of the car.
If you are familiar with Might Car Mods on YouTube, you may remember their in-depth video below, which they display how to mount a fire extinguisher.
What To Do When Car Catches Fire
Understanding exactly what to do if your car sets fire could mean the difference saving your car or it being a write off.
If you smell any sort of burning, don’t continue driving but instead pullover immediately in a safe location. Failing to do this will allow the fire to spread, which could potentially burst into flames and causes imminent danger.
Once you have pulled over safely, switch off the engine to prevent anymore fuel flowing. Get everyone out of the car and keep a safe distance away. You should also call the emergency services and await their response.
If you are prepared and have one of the recommended car fire extinguishers above, you can attempt to distinguish small fires. If the fire or smoke is from the engine bay, don’t open the bonnet fully. The reason behind this is because the increase of oxygen can cause the fire to increase in size. The best method is to open the bonnet slightly and spray as much of the fire extinguisher inside as you can.
Storing a car fire extinguisher inside your car is highly recommended. Until you have experienced a car fire, you may not understand the importance of owning one in the car. It can make the difference between minor damage to extreme damage that destroys the car.
All of our recommendations are suited to a range of different automotive fires and budgets. However, we advise that you purchase from a reputable brand that offer long warranties for complete peace of mind.