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Old 01-11-2009, 02:45 PM   #1
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Default My First and hopfully last Miata fire

I used seafoam on my engine the night before last, and along with the regular smoke that comes out of the engine, I had a flames come up from the exhaust side of the engine. The heat shield blocked some of my access, but I took care of it. I was able to put it out pretty quick with bottle of water I had near me but wow, thats never happen before. Scared the crap out of me, and my WB O2 freaked out for a while, but it seems fine now.
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Old 01-11-2009, 02:59 PM   #2
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lol!

Did you spill any seafoam on the exhaust? ;p

i woulda **** myself
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Old 01-11-2009, 03:04 PM   #3
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Nope factory header, with heatshield in place, so no spillage, I did use the remainder of the can in the fuel tank, but I can't imagine the stuff is so volatile it would cause a fire outside of the car. I freaked !!!!
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Old 01-11-2009, 03:36 PM   #4
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Old 01-11-2009, 03:56 PM   #5
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^^^ Werd on the fire extinguisher

When I blew my engine recently it put a good-sized hole in the left side of the motor. This led to a large oil leak/splash that covered the down pipe and the turbo blanket with some motor oil (synthetic). Seeing how I was in full boost when the engine let go, the DP and turbine were hot. When I pulled over and opened up the hood, I see that the oil had ignited and I had a small fire in progress; I pulled the blanket off the turbo while it was on fire. So I caught it in time, no damage, but it could have been a lot worse.

I'll be installing a fire extinguisher soon.
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Old 01-11-2009, 04:13 PM   #6
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I'm driving home and smell gasoline. When I get home, the smell is strong. I pop the hood while it's running and peak under to see fuel pouring onto the alternator, where it's boiling off!

It didn't catch fire, thankfully, but as soon as I fixed the problem, I went straight to walmart and bought a 14 dollar fire extinguisher.
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Old 01-11-2009, 04:51 PM   #7
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Damn! I'm gonna get one too. I haven't thought of mounting one. I had a similar experience. One time I was driving and my car dies, so I pull over and pop the hood to find that a fuel line slipped off the rail and was pouring gasoline on my alternator. There was visible fuel vapor everywhere! Luckily, there was no fire. It scared the crap outta me!
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Old 01-11-2009, 06:07 PM   #8
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I was trying to get my 914 started back in the day on a cold morning with some starting fluid. Car backfired and covered the engine bay in a gas/starting fluid mix that was burning. I saw a giant fireball in the rear view mirror. The air filter was off so I danced around trying to decide if I wanted to extinguish it with my fire extinguisher. Decided it was better to sacrifice the engine over the whole car. Sprayed the engine down later with the water hose, and ran some seafoam through it. Car ran for another year.
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Old 01-11-2009, 06:55 PM   #9
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+1 on the fire extinguisher. I have one, just need to figure out where to mount it.

I have too much $$$ into the car to watch it burn. My turbo dodge caught fire years ago and luckily I got it out in time...not fun.

Vash-
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Old 01-11-2009, 07:09 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 99mx5 View Post
I haven't thought of mounting one.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vashthestampede View Post
+1 on the fire extinguisher. I have one, just need to figure out where to mount it.
Mine is a 10BC purchased from the local hardware store, and I simply have it sitting on the floor behind the passenger's seat. It's not going anywhere, and yet it's reasonably easy to reach.

Important tip: when shopping for dry chemical fire extinguishers, try to get one that is rated B (flammable liquids) and C (electrical fires) only, as these contain sodium bicarbonate as the active agent. Those also rated for class A fires (solid combustibles, eg: wood) contain monoammonium phosphate, which is extremely corrosive.
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Old 01-11-2009, 07:24 PM   #11
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Important tip: when shopping for dry chemical fire extinguishers, try to get one that is rated B (flammable liquids) and C (electrical fires) only, as these contain sodium bicarbonate as the active agent. Those also rated for class A fires (solid combustibles, eg: wood) contain monoammonium phosphate, which is extremely corrosive.
Hmmm....I never knew that. I just checked mine and its A, B, and C rated. How corrosive are we talking, like spray it and it'll eat the car alive corrosive?

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Old 01-11-2009, 07:53 PM   #12
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Here, let me Google that for you.

Seriously, though. My understanding is that it's not going to make the car dissolve, but it's very difficult to clean up and causes corrosion of copper parts. IOW, it'll make a big mess and wreak havoc on your electrical system.

From Factory Mutual's Loss Prevention Data, Section 4-5:
"The multipurpose-type dry chemical forms a soft sticky mass when heated and clings to hot surfaces when they cool. Consequently it usualy cannot be brushed or blown from surfaces as sodium bicarbonate and potassium bicarbonate-base dry chemicals often can, particularly from metallic surfaces. Therefore, it is not recommended for areas such as textile card rooms or any other locations where many fine machine parts may require individual cleaning after a fire. Multipurpose-type dry chemical, in combination with moisture, can corrode copper and copper-alloy material."
From the Nov. / Dec. 1983 issue of "Air Transport Newsletter" written by Ronald Horn, then Manager/Ground Safety for Eastern Airlines and titled "Class A-B-C Extinguishers Damage Aircraft":
"The A-B-C extinguishers have excellent fire-fighting capability, but the mono-ammonium-phosphate chemical agent melts and flows when it comes into contact with heat. This is how it gets its Class A rating. This chemical is highly corrosive to aluminum and once it contacts hot aluminum and flows down into the structural cracks and crevices it cannot be washed out as the B-C dry chemical agents can.
Once an A-B-C extinguisher is used on an airplane, it is necessary to disassemble the aircraft piece by piece and rivet by rivet to accomplish cleanup. Failure to do so will result in destruction of the aircraft by corrsion."
For the $15 or $20 that a new 10BC extinguisher costs, I'd say your current ABC model might be well to be moved to kitchen duty.
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Old 01-11-2009, 08:03 PM   #13
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I knew it was a matter of time before you'd be tempted to use that site

pretty freakin cool huh?
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Old 01-11-2009, 08:12 PM   #14
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Good info Joe. Wouldn't have even considered looking at the A/B/C ratings.
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Old 01-11-2009, 08:16 PM   #15
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I've thought about them in the past, but this did it for me, thats my next miata accessory.
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Old 01-11-2009, 10:01 PM   #16
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Something similar happened to my brothers Saab 900 while using seafoam... The underside of the car caught fire it burned a hole through the bottom of the car and started to catch the driver’s seat on fire. I was the one in the car giving it gas while he fed the seafoam in.
That has to be one of the scariest things that has ever happened to me. Next to having two 270 pound lard asses rubbing up against my car while it was on jack stands with me underneath it.
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Old 01-11-2009, 11:20 PM   #17
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Ever since I had my DSM I carry a fire extinguisher in every vehicle.
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Old 01-12-2009, 11:24 AM   #18
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I have one sitting in my trunk, still haven't gotten around to mounting it to the cockpit brace.
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Old 01-12-2009, 11:46 AM   #19
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o i c wuts goin on


Quote:
Originally Posted by patsmx5 View Post
I'm driving home and smell gasoline. When I get home, the smell is strong. I pop the hood while it's running and peak under to see fuel pouring onto the alternator, where it's boiling off!

It didn't catch fire, thankfully, but as soon as I fixed the problem, I went straight to walmart and bought a 14 dollar fire extinguisher.
Quote:
Originally Posted by 99mx5 View Post
Damn! I'm gonna get one too. I haven't thought of mounting one. I had a similar experience. One time I was driving and my car dies, so I pull over and pop the hood to find that a fuel line slipped off the rail and was pouring gasoline on my alternator. There was visible fuel vapor everywhere! Luckily, there was no fire. It scared the crap outta me!
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Old 01-12-2009, 11:49 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by gompers View Post
o i c wuts goin on
lol. But seriously, I should start a "group buy" on fire extinguishers. I will prearange the orders so you can pay me a few bucks, and then for 14 dollars (shipping cost) you can pickup your item at your local walmart...
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