It’s a major inconvenience when your furnace pilot light won’t stay lit.
Not only will you be without heat, but you may also have to pay to have your furnace repaired. In this blog post, we will discuss what a pilot light is and what to do if your furnace pilot light won’t stay lit. We will also provide some helpful tips to keep your furnace running smoothly all winter long!
What Is a Furnace Pilot Light?
A pilot light is a small flame that is used to ignite the burner in a furnace. The pilot light is lit by a match or igniter, and then it stays lit all the time. Other gas appliances that have pilot lights include:
- Water heaters
- Gas fireplaces
When a furnace pilot light won’t stay lit, it’s usually because there is a problem with the gas valve or the igniter. If you’re having trouble with your furnace pilot light, we recommend that you call a furnace repair technician to come take a look.
How to Tell if the Pilot Light Is Out?
Besides having to put another layer on because your house is cold, there are a few ways you could tell that your furnace pilot light is out. First, take a look at the furnace itself. If you don’t see a small blue flame, then the pilot light is out.
You may also hear a “clicking” sound when you turn on your furnace. This is because the igniter is trying to light the pilot light, but it can’t because there is no gas flowing to the burner.
What Causes a Furnace Pilot Light to Go Out?
For the most part, your pilot light, once lit, will stay lit for good. But there are a couple of things that could make it go out, including:
A Faulty or Loose Thermocouple
The thermocouple is a safety device that is located next to the pilot light. Its job is to make sure that there is enough heat being generated by the pilot light. If the thermocouple detects that the pilot light flame is too low, it will shut off the gas flow to prevent an explosion. A faulty or loose thermocouple can cause the furnace pilot light to go out.
Dirty Soot and Debris Buildup
If your furnace isn’t vented properly, soot can build up and clog the pilot light opening. This will prevent the pilot light from getting enough oxygen, and it will eventually go out.
Air Flow Issues
If there are any blockages in the furnace vents or ductwork, it can cause the furnace pilot light to go out. This is because the furnace needs a steady supply of air in order to function properly.
The Gas is Shut Off
If the gas to your furnace is shut off, the pilot light will go out. This is usually because the furnace needs to be serviced or repaired.
How to Relight the Furnace Pilot Light
If you do discover that your pilot light is out, it’s easy enough to relight it on your own if you follow these steps in this order:
Step 1: Turn Off Your Furnace
Step 2: Turn the Gas Valve to “Pilot”
Step 3: Press the Red Ignite Button
Step 4: Gold Down Until It Lights
Step 5: Once Lit, Turn the Gas Back On
Step 6: Turn the Furnace Back On
If you follow these steps but the pilot light does not light or does not stay lit at Steps 3-4, there may be a bigger problem at hand. We recommend that you call a furnace repair technician to come and take a look. There could be an issue with the gas valve, the igniter, or something else entirely. A professional will be able to diagnose and fix the problem quickly and efficiently.
Tips for Maintaining Your Furnace
For optimal performance, here are some tips to help you keep your furnace running smoothly all winter long:
- Schedule routine maintenance at least once a year. This will help to ensure that your furnace is running properly and can prevent small problems from becoming big ones.
- Keep the area around your furnace clean and free of debris. This will help to keep the furnace running efficiently and prevent any safety hazards.
- Make sure that your furnace is vented properly. This will help to prevent soot and debris buildup, which can cause the furnace pilot light to go out.
- Check the furnace filter regularly and replace it when necessary. A dirty furnace filter can cause all sorts of problems, including decreased efficiency and increased wear and tear on the furnace.
Following these tips will help you keep your furnace in good working order and prevent costly repairs down the road. If you have any further questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact an HVAC professional.
When to Call the Pros at Aquarius
There are some furnace problems that are best left to the professionals. If you’re having any of the following issues, it’s time to call in a qualified professional:
- The furnace pilot light won’t stay lit
- The furnace isn’t heating your home evenly
- The furnace is making strange noises
- The furnace is cycling on and off more frequently than usual
- You smell gas near your furnace
If you’re having any of these problems, don’t hesitate to call Aquarius Home Services. These are all signs that there is a bigger problem with your furnace, which could mean you need furnace repairs ASAP.
Luckily, we guarantee furnace repairs for an entire year after we make repairs. If the same issue arises, we’ll repair it for free! Don’t let a faulty pilot light keep you from being toasty warm this winter. Call Aquarius— we’re here to help!