How to put out / extinguish a lithium battery fire?

We all want to prevent a fire from happening, but that is not always the case. There are plenty of threads on battery building safety etc. So I wanted to talk about what is the best and or most practical way to subdue a lithium battery fire. and prevent further loss of property or worse.

Lion or lipo, they both burn pretty similar. They create their own oxidiser so they are almost impossible to put out, also the heat can travel from cell to cell creating a slow traveling chain reaction that will not stop burning until all the cells are burnt out.

The other reason I am starting this topic is there seems to be some confusion about what to use to put out these fires. Most people saying you need a special type of fire extinguisher, but many experts saying using lots of water is the best way. This is to reduce the temperature and prevent the fire spreading. Its not really to put out the battery fire.

The special fire extinguisher people talk about is a class D which is a for lithium metal fires, our batteries do not contain solid metal lithium so a class D should not be used. Lithium battery fires are a considered a flammable liquid fire (B class) and can be extinguished with normal ABC extinguishers. From my reading the most ideal is a class B foaming type.

Also its not like anyone is going to be carrying a huge fire extinguisher in their back pack! So what are the practical alternatives?

I use my board to commute and one of my biggest fears is that it spontaneously starts to combust while I’m on the train. I have considered carrying one of these fire blankets which I could throw over the board to somewhat contain a fire.

I have also considered carrying a bag of sand or a bag of bi-carbonate soda. What you guys think about my ideas for back pack extinguishers?

References
Fire extinguisher company recommends
Battery university recommends

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I was gonna say baking soda

I ordered this. Thankfully I haven’t had to use it yet, but it also fits nice in a backpack for those first few beta rides. I think it says it puts out chemical fires. https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B002U0KGDY?psc=1&ref=yo_pop_mb_pd_title

I doubt that will work well. Just look on that tiny spray"stream"? :smiley:AC_SY400

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Haha okay fair, but I have tested it and that stream is powerful. Seriously. It’s a better option than…

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Absolutely! Rather have that thing in your backpack then fight a fire with your fist’s! I’ve bought this. It’s 2kg and fit’s in a regular backpack. Works well with electrical and chemical fires

20€

My biggest fear is that my battery will explode in the apartment during charging or such, I had nightmares about it…
But what should you do? I have a fire blanket and a abc fire extinguisher to be prepared if it would happen…
I’ve heard water can make it even worse cuz it can cause a chemical reaction?

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While on a saftey course about lithium batteries and other dangerous goods the lecturer basically told us its best to let the fire burn out (contained obv) since its very hard to stop a lithium fire and you’d probably end up hurting yourself rather then putting it out. But if possible, completely submerging it in water would do the trick. Not sure how i feel about tossing my board into the ocean tho.

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Well lithium metal will explode in contact with water, I think it gets very hot and makes hydrogen. :boom: My science teacher demonstrated this to our class, was cool. Like 20 years ago though before safety was so serious.

But lion batteries don’t have lithium in metal form. Its in micro particles in the electrolyte that don’t react strongly with water according to the experts.

For your house I would add fire alarms and a bucket of sand. What you have already is good too.

This is my welding spot. I always have around a fire extinguisher a fire blanket and several fireproof XL bags. I never used any of those. I work very carefully but shit happens. I think they are a must on every table. Better have’em and not use’em than need’em and cry later

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I’m thinking that if I had to I could throw the board in the bathtub and start filling it with cold water until it’s completely submerged…that or throw it out the window if possible.

I have no problems sacrificing my board to save my apartment and my neighbour’s.

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A question I also asked my self not only once.
Just found that:

Don’t know if it´s that good but the description sounds good.
I read that salt water is better than normal water.
But the problem is that often the cells start to burn from inside again.
So like others already said, best way to through it into the ocean :wink:

There also a punch of different boxes to store the battery or place it while charging.

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One of the annoying parts of my board is having to open the enclosure to charge. It works for me, but it does allow for checking the IR and use a hobby charger. 12s6p from dead to full under three hours. It also allows me to detach a pack of it decides to burn while charging.
If I was concerned about charging regular lipo. I would do it in a lipo bag sitting on a frying pan so I could carry it outside. Lithium fires are hard to put out because until the reaction which caused the fire loses fuel it will keep burning.

Fires are rare, but having a plan in case one happens is a good idea.

maybe just covering it up with 20kg of sand so it does not spread and wait til it all burns out or something?

You could actually throw a couple of motors and vescs on that thing and ride it. Just make sure the batteries are in reach of the hose

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You should build it! I dare you. lol

I dunno if I’d like anything as hard as a fire extinguisher in a backpack, broken ribs anyone?

There are some small options 1kg, 0.5kg.
A light, mountable, quick release bracket which comes with some of them, plenty of mounting options, that don’t necessarily need to be close to the battery and in fact you could get it off very very quickly and at least have a fighting chance.

Wearing a helmet, gloves etc I don’t see how you would not be able to get the extinguisher off before critical mass occurs

Lol true, the faster it burns, the quicker it’ll be out.

Honestly though this has got me thinking about putting a little hole in the top of my deck the runs a tube into my enclosure near the battery, if anything happens I can get one of those spray can things and shove the nozzle into the tube. Not sure if it would really help that much though

i think the best you can do is just wait untill it is over

check that out:

the glass melts and covers the fire so no oxygen can reach it anymore.

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