Flammable Storage Cabinet

A flammable storage cabinet also called a flammable liquid storage cabinet, is a special storage container made specifically to safely keep solvents, gasoline, chemicals and other flammable liquids. They are typically made from galvanized steel and are yellow in color to signify that they hold flammables. There are quite a few different variations of flammable storage cabinets designed to hold varying capacities and to be used in different locations.

Why You Need A Flammable Storage Cabinet

Whether in a business or home all flammable liquids always need to be stored properly. Not doing so is not only dangerous but illegal. It can lead to serious accidents or death to people and severe damage to property. Depending on where you live or work there are different regulations and fire codes for this.

Flammable storage cabinets protect the liquids inside of the cabinet from causing flash fires, which are rapid burning intense fires caused by the vapors of a flammable liquid. And because these liquids are safe inside of the cabinet they are prevented from intensifying fires started outside of the cabinet.

Storage cabinets also provide a safe way to contain spilled flammable liquids inside of the cabinet itself without it becoming a fire hazard. They also prevent flammable liquids from developing excessive internal pressure.

Flammable Storage Cabinet

The Most Common Flammable Storage Cabinet Requirements (These vary depending on the code and regulations where you live)

Made from galvanized steel: All flammable liquid storage cabinets need to be made from at least 18 gauge steel to protect against fires. This keeps a fire on the outside from affecting the flammable liquids inside.

Double walled:  Having a double wall with at least ½”-1” of space between the walls is another precaution against fires.

Yellow colored:  Just as other cabinets are certain colors to show that they contain certain types of materials like red color for combustible items or green for pesticides, a flammable storage cabinet should be yellow to show that it contains flammables.

Clearly labeled: The cabinet also needs to be labeled and should say both: “Flammable” and “Keep Fire Away.”

Flammable Storage Cabinet

Raised doors: The cabinet must have raised doors; typically this means they must be 2 inches from the base. This keeps anything which spills inside of the cabinet totally contained in the case or sump area as well as keeps other liquids and moisture out, essentially making it liquid-tight.

3 point latch:  All doors must also have a 3 point latch to guarantee that they will stay securely shut.

Tight fitting joints: All of the joints need to be tight fitting and they also should be welded this helps to reduce air flow and in turn adds more protection from fires.

Powder coated finish: This not only looks good but it functions to keep corrosion and humidity to an absolute minimum.

Extra Features Not Always Required But That Are Extra Convenient

Vents: These function to release any internal vapors and are not usually required if storing sealed containers. The vents should be kept sealed with the accompanying bungs unless using the proper vent pipe.

Adjustable feet: This is a great feature which allows you to keep your storage cabinet level even if your floor is not. Just use your level and adjust the legs until the cabinet is level.

Flammable Storage Cabinet

 

Ground connection: Another good feature to have if you are planning to dispense flammable liquids from the container while still in cabinet. Grounding it will help to prevent both static sparks and fires.

Self closing doors: A fantastic feature of some cabinets is self-closing doors. These not only close by themselves but self-latch as well which means you will never have to worry about forgetting. No human error means more safety and these are actually required in certain states.

Sloped shelves: These allow liquids to drain downwards to the sump area in the base of the cabinet instead of pooling around the liquid’s container in case of a spill.

The Top Brands

Hands down the most well known and trusted manufacturers of flammable storage cabinets are Justrite and Eagle. Purchasing one of these 2 brands pretty much guarantees you will be abiding by all codes and requirements regardless of where you live.

Flammable Storage Cabinet

Justrite– Justrite has been one of the leading makers of storage products for flammable and hazardous liquids since 1906. All Justrite flammable liquid storage cabinets are top of the line and rigorously tested by third parties for quality along with complying to standard codes and regulations.

With features like fusible links which hold cabinets doors open which are made to melt at 165 degrees Fahrenheit to automatically close the door in the event of a fire and a 10 year warranty on all their products, it’s no wonder Justrite is an industry leader.

Eagle- Eagle is the other heavy weight when it comes to safety cabinets of all types. With a ton of creative and convenient features like adjustable feet, all eagle flammable storage cabinets are guaranteed to be the best quality and the fact that they have been in business since 1894 tells you they know what they are doing. All of their products are proudly made in the USA and will comply even with the strictest of standards.

3 Steps For Selecting The Right Flammable Storage Cabinet

Step 1: Contact your local fire marshal to make sure of your federal, state, or local regulations and codes.

Step 2: If the type of door is not dictated by any regulation or code that you must follow in your area choose the type of door which is most convenient for you. Typically there are 3 choices: manual doors which swing open one hundred and eighty degrees and that self-latch when you push them closed, bi-fold doors which slide open and fold on a track and latch by themselves when you manually close them, and self-close doors which swing open and both self-close and self-latch.

Flammable Storage Cabinet

Step 3: Decide what capacity you will need and where you will use your cabinet. This will help you to choose both the right size and model cabinet for your needs.

Different Sizes And Types

Flammable liquids storage cabinets are available in all different sizes to fit your unique storage needs. These sizes are described in how many gallons of liquid they can hold. This can range from 2 gallons all the way to around 110.

Mini, transportable, bench top, counter-top, and compact flammable storage cabinets: These are the smallest variety of cabinets and go by many names depending on the manufacturer. They are the best solution for someone who only needs to store a small amount of flammable liquids. Small enough to be placed on top of a work bench, table, or counter top they normally have one shelf. The largest of these can usually hold around 15 gallons while the smallest about 24 aerosol cans.

Flammable Storage Cabinet

Wall mountable flammable storage cabinets: Another option and one which is also an excellent space saver is purchasing a wall mounted cabinet. These come with a mounting bracket and of course installation instructions. They are perfect above workbenches.

Standard flammable storage cabinets: Standard sized cabinets typically run from around 30 gallons to about 90. They usually have 2-3 shelves and varying door styles.

Slim flammable storage cabinets: These are cabinets made specifically for areas with limited space. They are also perfect for extra storage when placed next to existing cabinets.

Flammable Storage Cabinet

Piggy back flammable storage cabinets: Some companies offer what are called piggyback cabinets. These are made to sit on top of existing cabinets for extra storage space. They can also be used on bench or table tops. They normally hold anywhere between 12 and 17 gallons of storage.

High security flammable storage cabinets: For high-security environments some manufacturers offer cabinets which have steel bars across the doors.

Under the counter flammable storage cabinets: Not as tall as the standard type cabinets, the under the counter variety are the perfect height for using them under an existing counter or adding a new counter top above them. They are a great way to save space especially if you don’t have a lot of it.

Flammable Storage Cabinet

Corner flammable storage cabinets: One more option for areas with limited space are corner cabinets. They are made to perfectly fit corners, an often overlooked space, and have backs designed to help them do so while still allowing for large storage capacities (usually from 30-45 gallons).

The Simplest Ways To Prevent Accidents

There are four extremely simple things to keep in mind that will dramatically decrease your chance of having an accident while using flammable liquids and their storage containers.

1) Always, always, always make sure you when you store containers in your cabinet they are properly closed. This is the most common mistake with flammable liquids.

2) If a spill does occur deal with it immediately, don’t wait until later.

3) Never place your storage cabinet in a space where it could potentially block your escape if there were an accident or fire.

Flammable Storage Cabinet

4) Only place your cabinet in a space which is both low in humidity a well ventilated.

When choosing a flammable liquid storage cabinet always be sure to use the three step method listed above and most importantly make sure you are following the legal guidelines, codes, and regulations where you live. And of course remember to choose a reputable brand as purchasing one is an investment in the safety and well-being of your home, business, family, workers, and yourself.

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