What do water heaters, gas stoves, furnaces and gas fireplaces have in common? They all function with the help of a pilot light – a small device designed to light the gas coming out of the gas valve and main burner. But what to do when the pilot light goes out?! The team at Integrity Home Solutions tells common reasons that the pilot light may be out.
Why isn’t my Pilot Light Working?
Here’s the thing: it is not uncommon for a pilot light to go out. And it could be due to any of the following reasons:
- High winds or downdraft
- Inefficient pilot flame caused by low gas pressure or a blocked orifice
- A flame that is set too small
- An insufficient supply of gas
- A malfunctioning thermocouple
- A bad gas valve
- A cracked heat exchanger
- Improper venting
- Issues with the flue or chimney
Can’t figure out why the light isn’t working? Call our team of licensed professionals! We cover all of Tampa Bay and can come help diagnose the problem quickly and get it fixed for you affordably.
Easy-To-Fix Pilot Light Issues
Step one to fixing your pilot light is to troubleshoot the issue, which may be easily fixed on your own. Here are some of the easier to fix pilot light problems.
There’s a draft. The most common reason for a pilot light to go out is a nearby draft. Fortunately, it’s also the easiest to fix. Simply check to see where the draft is coming from. Seal any cracks in the walls and add weather-stripping to nearby doors and windows.
You have dirt buildup. Another common cause for a pilot light blow out is a blockage caused by an accumulation of dirt and soot. You can solve this problem easily by cleaning it out with flexible wire or an old toothbrush. Repeat the process every six months to keep your pilot light in working order.
There is an inefficient flame. Adjust the size of your pilot light flame using a dedicated bolt or screw. Just make sure to check the owner’s manual for your appliance or the pilot light instruction label commonly found on a wall panel adjacent to the pilot light.
There is not enough gas. Check your gas supply line and make sure it is set at “Open.” Also, take a look at the pressure gauge to ensure you have enough gas left in your supply tank. An insufficient supply of natural gas usually results in an inadequate flame or a pilot light that repeatedly goes out. If this is the case, you simply need to order more gas.
When does a Pilot Light Blow Out Require Professional Attention?
The pilot light burns inefficiently. A properly working pilot light flame should be a cone-like shape, bright blue in color and yellow at the tip. A lazy orange/yellow flame means the furnace or water heater isn’t getting hot enough to heat the thermocouple to the point where it triggers the gas valve to open.
The thermocouple is faulty. When the pilot light stays on and burns with an adequate flame but the gas appliance is still not working, it could indicate a problem with the thermocouple. This means the wiring needs to be adjusted or the thermocouple needs to be replaced.
There is a safety issue. When dealing with natural gas, be careful and follow all safety precautions. Insufficient pilot light flames could also be a sign that carbon monoxide is being released into the air. If you have any safety concerns, call a professional plumber immediately.
Integrity Home Solutions Can Fix Your Pilot Light Issue!
If your pilot light blows out repeatedly, there could be a problem with your system which should be immediately inspected by a professional like Integrity Home Solutions. Not only do we offer 24/7 emergency plumbing repair in the Tampa Bay area, but we also perform thorough maintenance checks to keep your system and appliances running efficiently.
For more information on our plumbing or heating/cooling services, please call us today at (813) 531-9480!