A Back-Fire Flame Arrestor (BFA) must be installed on each carburetor in a gasoline-powered boat with an inboard engine installed after April 1940. This device aims to muffle sparks in an enclosed engine space so they will not cause a fire. It is essential that the BFA is either US Coast Guard-approved or conforms to SAE J-1928 or UL 1111 standards. For the BFA to function correctly, it must be in good working condition and have a flame-tight connection with the air intake.
Using air and fuel induction systems, commonly found on personal watercraft, velocity stacks, and reed-type devices, is also an acceptable method of reducing backfire flames.
The purpose of this device is to prevent sparks from causing a fire. As a result, it suppresses sparks that may be generated in enclosed engine compartments.
Maintaining your backfire flame arrestor is a must. Boat operators should ensure that the machine is regularly cleaned and checked to remain in good working condition. As a precaution, it is recommended that the BFA be removed and then cleaned with a mild detergent (see instructions provided by the manufacturer) so that any fuel or combustion residue can be thoroughly removed.