1211 and 1301 or "Halon Blend" are liquefied
compressed gasses which stop the spread of fire by
chemically interrupting combustion. Halons are odorless,
colorless, electrically nonconductive, leave no residue
after use and are "people safe."
Halon blend is far superior to the 1211 Halon propelled by
nitrogen because it generates its own pressure so that it
does not change even if the extinguisher is almost empty.
it legal to manufacture,
buy or sell Halon 1211-1301?
April 6, 1998, the manufacture of the Halon 1211-1301 blend
is prohibited (Federal Register, 63 FR 11084 dated March 5,
1998) except for aviation fire protection, provided that the
owner at the time of disposal, if there is any Halon
remaining in the unit, properly returns the unit to the
manufacturer for the recycling of the Halon.
effective April 6, the Halon 1211-1301 blend will only be
sold "for aviation use only" in the United States.
rule does not prohibit:
sale or use of Halon blends produced prior to April 6,
needs three elements to prosper; fuel, oxygen and heat. The
most common extinguishing agents like water, carbon dioxide,
dry chemical and foams attack the fire physically, deprive
the fire of one or more of the three critical elements
needed for propagation. Halon differs from all other
extinguishing agents in the way it puts out the fire. It
offers some of water's cooling effect and some of carbon
dioxide's smothering action, but its essential extinguishing
technique lies in its capacity to chemically react with the
fire's components. It actually interrupts the chain reaction
of fire -- a process known as "chain breaking".
provides a Certificate of Conformance with every aviation
distributor's order. Below is a sample Certificate of
is to certify that the following 1211-1301 Halon Fire
Extinguishers are rated and listed by Underwriter's
Laboratory. These units meet A.N.S.I./UL Standards 711 and
1093 as tested and are listed by Underwriter's Laboratory.
conducted by Factory Mutual (in 1975) demonstrated that
the blend of Halon 1211 and 1301 is much more effective
than either 1211 or 1301 alone. The optimum blend of
1211 and 1301 possesses up to 50% more fire kill
capability, than 1211 alone.
leakage. 1211-1301 Blended fire extinguishers maintain
their pressure when used. Since the Halon molecule is
larger than the nitrogen molecule, the blended units
experiences less leakage around the valve and
Halon 1211-1301 fire extinguisher does not require a
gauge, whereas the Halon 1211 fire extinguisher requires
a gauge and ongoing maintenance and recharging.
toxicity evaluations have been compiled by nationally
recognized US Medical laboratories & institutions on
Halon 1301 and 1211. These evaluations have shown that Halon
1301 is the safest extinguishing agent available, and that
Halon 1211 is the second safest. Dual Halon concentrations
of about 5% by volume in air are adequate to extinguish
fires of most combustible materials. This concentration is
equivalent to emptying twelve (12) 2.5 lb units in a closed
room of 1000 cubic feet, which would be highly unlikely.
A fax received
from the FAA along with excerpts from AC 20-42C and 25.851
clearly indicate that a gauge is not a requirement on any
type of aircraft. The fax response states: "There
should be no problem with an extinguisher that is U.L
approved and has no gauge for extinguishant capacity,
provided that the weight tolerance for the extinguishant is
should the Halon blend be inspected and maintained?
FAA Advisory Circular 20-42C dated 3/7/84 titled "Hand
Held Extinguishers for Use in Aircraft", it states:
"Disposable type fire extinguishers should be
maintained and inspected in accordance with the
nameplate instructions for the RT A1200 are:
monthly or more frequently. Ensure nozzle is not
obstructed and safety seal is intact. To be installed,
inspected and maintained in accordance with NFPA no. 10.
Return to manufacturer... if gross weight is below 1420
grams" (2½ lb. f/e gross weight).
no.10 states in Chapter 4 "Inspection, Maintenance,
and Recharging" the following:
"Inspection is a "quick check" that an
extinguisher is available and will operate. It is
intended to give reasonable assurance that the
extinguisher is fully charged and operable. This is done
by seeing that it is in its designated place, that it
has not been actuated (discharged) or tampered with, and
that there is no obvious physical damage or condition to
prevent operation... Determine fullness by weighing or
"Extinguishers shall be subjected to maintenance
not more than one year apart ... During annual
maintenance..., such extinguisher shall be thoroughly
examined externally in accordance with the applicable
items of 4-4.2(a) mechanical parts."
RECHARGING, the 1211-1301 HALON requires no recharging.
Circular 20-42C "Hand Fire Exting. for Use in aircraft"
excerpts relating to 1211-1301 Halon are taken from the
above mentioned AC which "provides methods
acceptable to the Administrator for showing compliance
with the hand fire extinguisher provisions in Parts 25,
29, 91, 121, 125, 127, and 135 of the FAR."
"For occupied spaces on aircraft, Halon 1211
extinguishers should not be less than 2½ pounds
capacity. These extinguishers should have a minimum 5
B:C rating; not less than 8 seconds effective discharge
time; not less than a 10 foot range..."
"For occupied spaces on aircraft, Halon 1301
extinguishers should have a minimum 2B:C rating, and
should have an effective discharge time of not less than
"Halon fire extinguishing agents approved for use
include ... a combination of the two (Halon
"Halon 1211 is a multipurpose, Class A, B, C rated
agent effective against flammable liquid fires. Halon
1301 offers limited Class A capability when used in
portable fire extinguishers."
"In accordance with Section 21.305(d) of the FAR,
the FAA accepts hand held extinguishers approved by
Underwriters Laboratories...". Also, in accordance
with Section 25.851 (601(b1) "An approved type fire
extinguisher includes those approved by the Underwriter's
Laboratories, Inc., Factory Mutual, Underwriter's
Laboratories of Canada..."
"Non-refillable disposable fire extinguishers
(1211-1301) are exempt from the periodic hydrostatic
of Using Halogenated Agent Extinguishers
" ...1211-1301 is similar to CO2 in that it is
suitable for use in cold weather and leaves no
" ...1211-1301 is three times as effective as a CO2
extinguisher having equal weight of agent."
" ...Halon 1211 and Halon 1301 leaves no chemical
residue behind to contaminate or corrode aircraft parts
"Other advantages of ...1211-1301 are lower cold
shock characteristics on electronic equipment, no
degradation of visual acuity, and lower pressure."
Related FAR Sections and CFR.
FAR 21.305 b. FAR 23.561 c. FAR 25.561; 25.851 d. FAR 27.561 e. FAR 29.561; 29.851; 299.853(e)
& (f) f. FAR 91.193(c)
FAR 121.309(c) h. FAR 125.119(b) i. FAR 127.107(c) j. FAR 135.155. k. Title 46 and 49 of the CFR