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How to Handle Furnace Puff Backs

By brian barrick
January 31, 2012

The weather outside may be frightful, so it’s time to turn on your furnace and get nice and toasty, but what if there’s a problem with your adult care home’s furnace?  Warming up may not be your only problem, this could result in a case of furnace puff back. Furnace puff back is caused by a malfunction in the heating system that results in incomplete combustion in the unit. This can cause a mess in your home because the incompletely-burnt material passes through the duct system into the living areas of the home.

                If the fuel and oxygen levels are balanced in the furnace, your furnace should have no problems with combustion, but if the rate of combustion slows and the fuel injection continues at the same rate, a sudden combustion can occur. Puff back is not resistant to puff back either, although it is a bit different then forced air systems.

                Puff back is often a sticky, oily film that has a petroleum base and it usually has a strong smell. If puff back occurs it can be found in every nook and cranny, furniture, behind closed doors, inside cabinet drawers, and closets. You will need to get in touch with a professional restoration business that will inspect the premises and test various cleaning methods to get rid of the residue, as well as a trained HVAC technician to service your heating system.  The goal of the professional restoration business is to return the home to its pre-puff back condition rapidly.

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