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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

How to recognize a puffback in your Hicksville/Plainview home

3/1/2017 (Permalink)

What is a Puff Back?

Most of us have never heard of a puff back. A puff back occurs when an oil burner backfires sending soot throughout your home or business. It can happen all at once (like a balloon popping) or more gradually (as if someone was holding the end of a balloon and letting the air seep out slowly).

How do I know if a Puff Back has occurred?

It is usually quite easy to tell when one has happened. Soot covers all areas of the home or business and may range from light to very heavy. Sometimes the disbursement of soot is so light and fine it appears to be ordinary dust. This "dust" however, reappears hours after being cleaned. There is often a strong odor of oil accompanying a puff back. 

Can I prevent a Puff Back from occurring?

The best defense against a puff back is to have your oil burner inspected annually and kept in good repair.  This is no guarantee against having a puff back, but it greatly reduces your risk. Keep debris, animal hair or anything that could interfere with proper functioning away from your oil burner.

What are the possible health concerns?

While the soot is suspended in the air, occupants are at risk of inhalation exposure. Since the particles are less than 1 micron (m m) in diameter, they potentially can penetrate the deepest areas of the lung. While some studies have looked at the health risks associated with microscopic soot generated from diesel exhaust and factory emissions, none have considered the residential exposure due to furnace puff back. 

What to do if a puff back occurs...

Notify SERVPRO of Hicksville/Plainview  immediately. We will have our qualified disaster restoration specialists assess the damages and set up a crew to clean all affected areas immediately - soot travels and will reappear if not properly cleaned.

Call in SERVPRO of Hicksville/Plainview Professionals Today! 516-733-1800

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