• Water puts a fire out by cooling it off. This is because the boiling point of water is lower then the typical flash point of most materials. If you throw a bunch of ice into a fire it will probably be supressed if not extinguished. Of course it a depends on the material that is burning versus the amount of ice. It is all governed by the physical laws of thermodynamics.
  • Water puts out a fire by doing one or both of two things. In smaller amounts, it will remove heat needed to sustain the combustion reaction. In large enough amounts, water will also deprive the fire of the oxygen needed for combustion to continue. If you add too much ice to a fire, it will put out that fire. In either cast, the water and/or ice must be introduced to the fire at the point of combustion. However, when fire is used to melt ice, the ice and melt water are usually kept separated from the fire by some kind of container. Thus the ice and water are unable to interfere with the combustion process. They simply absorb the heat that is released as a byproduct of the combustion.
  • Ice needs to be at 0 degrees Celsius. Fire warms up the ice so it is above 0 degrees Celsius and therefore the ice melts and it reverts to it's liquid state: water. If you want me to answer without commenting on temperature it can't be done, because heat is the answer.
  • Very well said science_geek. It can also be said that the atoms within water can extinguish fire because they are free to move around, and can easily get into molecules within the fire. Since ice is solid water, The ice does not have it's molecules move, so it can't get into the fire to put it out. The moving molecules of the fire can metaphorically speaking, attack the ice, gettting it's molecules to move again, thus changing it back into water.
  • To put out fire,we need to bring the temperature of burning substance below its ignition temperature. As specific heat capacity of water is more than that of ice therefore water will absorb more heat than ice. Thus, water is more useful in terms of putting out fire than ice.
  • Time and molecular form and structure.
  • ice is solid.
  • What is this, the Middle Ages?! Rock-paper-scissors?! Is there supposed to be some deep, mystical connection between the two phenomena you ask about or some implied contradiction or inconsistency? Surely you understand why water puts out fires AND why fire melts ice. Science gives us a few simple rules that explain and predict both of these. Not sure I understand the question.
  • 6-18-2017 There is no besides - ice is cold and water is hot. They cancel each other.

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