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What are Puff Backs?

Written by Casey Shearns on . Posted in , , , .

Puff backs occur when an oil burner takes a long time to ignite due to the fumes building up in your furnace. The fume build-up causes an explosion within the burner chamber, leading soot to disperse throughout your home, covering walls, furniture, and anything around. 

Puff backs are no small matter and can require extensive clean-up and restoration. Follow along as the Soil-Away restoration experts go over the leading causes of puff backs and how you can prevent them.

What Causes Puff Packs

  • Leaks in your equipment: Leaks allow oil to leak out and air to enter inside. When air bubbles get into your heating system, it causes the pressure to drop. The air pressure then pushes the unburned oil to leak out of the system, causing combustion and a puff back. 
  • The shutdown valve is not working properly
  • Dirty, clogged, or faulty oil burner nozzle
  • Poor maintenance: If you are not taking proper care of your oil burner, your chances of experiencing puff backs increase dramatically. It is imperative that you know how to maintain your oil burner properly. 

Puff Back Prevention

Puff backs can cause severe damage to your home, your belongings, and your family. It is crucial that you have the knowledge to prevent puff backs from happening in your home. 

  • Service your appliances: Be sure to have professionals come out to service, inspect, and clean your oil-burning appliances at least once a year. 
  • Be aware: Always be sure to be mindful of any odors, noises, or soot coming from your boiler/ furnace room.
  • Keep an eye for leaks: Keep a constant eye out for leaks near your pipes and burner. 
  • Look for soot: Any sight of soot, debris, or rust in the vent connector signifies that your system must be cleaned.

Puff Back Clean Up

Puff backs require intense, professional cleaning. You do not want to attempt to clean soot damage in your home by yourself. The soot itself is greasy, carcinogenic, and toxic; it is not an easy clean. It affects your entire home and gets into every crevice possible. You will need to hire restoration professionals. 

If you have experienced a puff back in your home, give the fire and soot restoration team at Soil-Away a call immediately at (603) 641-6555. For more information regarding oil burner puff backs, contact us today.

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Jay KorsenJay Korsen
00:51 04 Aug 22
All I have to say is WOW and FANTASTIC. I just got done building out my new professional office with Soil-Away’s construction division and they went ABOVE and BEYOND. Scott and Mike, the carpenters are skilled artisans. The project got done on time and the project came in on budget! The finished results have been blowing people away. Much better than I could have anticipated. Anyone is welcome to come to our office, Bright Light Chiropractic in Hooksett to check out the fine work they did. Simply can’t sing enough praises for them. Sorry that the picture doesn’t do the job justice. Thank you Jack and your team. -Dr. Jay
Asian BreezeAsian Breeze
04:28 15 Jul 22
Since day one, I’ve known the owner, Jack, to be a hard-working and selfless leader. Through the efforts of him and his team, he was able to restore my flooded restaurant to tip-top shape. I was amazed with Jack’s orderliness throughout the entire process. Jack has proven to me that he is trustworthy, as both a friend and an individual in the work environment.
Breton LangendorferBreton Langendorfer
21:17 07 Jul 22
Highly recommend Soil-Away. A pipe in our upstairs bathroom gave and sent water down through a wall for at least a day before we noticed water dripping through our kitchen ceiling. Our insurance put us in touch with Soil-Away and they were at our house the next morning to assess the damage and dry things out. Joe, Ray and Tom were phenomenal to work with. They explained every part of the process to us and were very professional and friendly. If you have to deal with similar issues call Soil-Away, you won’t regret it.
Maureen CidzikMaureen Cidzik
13:49 15 May 22
Superior service from start to finish. Highly responsive. The entire team is dedicated to quality and customer care and it shows in everything they do – from first call, to estimate, to job completion.
Sarah GrugnaleSarah Grugnale
16:02 14 Jan 22
Joe and Tommy were amazing to deal with, they kept us updated every step of the process. They were punctual and hard working, answering all of our questions that we had. Everything was done as promised and even above and beyond. A great experience from start to finish.