What to Do if Your Furnace Pilot Light Won’t Stay Lit

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
  • Stoves
  • 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.

furnace pilot light won't stay lit heat

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!

Haley Lasché
Haley Lasché
1716002159
We had an excellent experience with Aquarius. Our plumber, Erik, was efficient and thorough. He made a complete assessment and gave me different options for the repairs I could make. He also prepared me for the costs of the repairs we knew we needed to make now as well as the repairs we will likely need to make in the future. I felt like I was able to make a good choice about what needed to be done today, and I’m ready for what to expect in the coming years as we care for and repair the 75-year-old house we love so much. I will absolutely use them again.
James Pike
James Pike
1715985966
Brad and his crew did an outstanding job and were very informative walking through the system. You should be proud to have those 4 men working for you.
Ronald Peterson
Ronald Peterson
1715970709
Problem solved. Simple error on our part with the power switch turned off by mistake. Quick effective service.
Donn Satrom
Donn Satrom
1715916044
Wanda Bester
Wanda Bester
1715915730
Excellent!!
Jon Roloff
Jon Roloff
1715893001
Christopher Eggert
Christopher Eggert
1715885010
Had a very good experience with our plumbing needs as our service technician Gordy was very knowledgeable and provided solutions for our plumbing issue. Gordy also identified a couple of potential future issues and provided options and bids for those as well.I would recommend Aquarius Home Services to others based on my personal experience
vivek javangula
vivek javangula
1715805530
Nick visited my home today for an AC tuneup, he certainly did a great job beyond expectations and explained how to take better care of my furnace unit and AC unit. Hands down the best
M Engelen
M Engelen
1715798674
Kay Milbrath
Kay Milbrath
1715789778
Alec was great at explaining the features of our air conditioning and the work he performed.
Jerrold Wood
Jerrold Wood
1715739574
Part of Aquarius Home ServiceKnows his business re HVACAppreciates customer position
Jason Anderson
Jason Anderson
1715725775
John has a great guy. Great help deserves a fat raise.
betty cornwell
betty cornwell
1715721398
Nick is polite, on time, and does a great job!
Vincent Ruane
Vincent Ruane
1715716313
Very positive HVAC service call by technician Riley.Riley is professional, competent, respectful and very thorough.He explains his findings and recommendations very effectively. He is clearly driven to providing a outstanding result.
mark stevenson
mark stevenson
1715708324
Paul was very professional, very knowledgeable and got things done quickly....thanks
Danielle F
Danielle F
1715706224
Nick was very personable and professional at the same time. Staff was easy to work with in getting services scheduled. The reminders of the appointment were nice to have, the phone call when they were on their way is also nice. (Instead of waiting a 6 hour block and not knowing when they will arrive.)
Kyle McKeever
Kyle McKeever
1715701178
David Schaeffer was great!
Gary Long
Gary Long
1715653431
Technician Brent was informative and thorough during my AC tune up. Thanks again Aquarius!
Aliciea Her
Aliciea Her
1715642256
Nicholas did a wonderful job with our AC and furnace tune up. His attention to detail, friendly demeanor and focus on education the customer is unmatched.
Derrick Chamley
Derrick Chamley
1715626310
Professional and informative. Mike C was great!
C. C.
C. C.
1715625592
Nick was great! Easy to communicate with & explained things in layman terms!
Daniel Bakken
Daniel Bakken
1715615714
John Jansen
John Jansen
1715554236
Tech arrived and completed the service as requested. Very knowledgeable and answered any questions that I had.
bruce armstrong
bruce armstrong
1715453376
Aquarius service tech Matt did an excellent job as usual.Very helpful and thorough.
Gary Winkel
Gary Winkel
1715432198
Dale Ebben
Dale Ebben
1715372986
Aquarius Home Services recently replaced our furnace and matching Air Conditioner in a one day job. Scheduling kept us informed on the arrival of each service person in the various trades and the project went smoothly and on schedule. All tradesmen were knowledgable, personable and considerate from the original sales person to the final walk through technician. I readily give them my highest recommendation.
Thomas Gruetzmacher
Thomas Gruetzmacher
1715369765
Paul was great! He went above and beyond installing our new water heater! He was so polite and explained everything to me clearly. Thank you for doing a great job!
Eric Meyer
Eric Meyer
1715364134
A big thank you to Nick S. With Aquarius service. My heat pump was not working for cooling. Nick diagnosed that a power cord had gotten wrapped around the fan blade and wasn’t allowing it to spin. After removing the blade, disentangling the cord and re-threading it, he put it back together again. We fired it up and it works great now! I’ve worked with several people on the Aquarius team and they are all knowledgeable, friendly, and great to work with—Nick is no exception. Prompt, same day service, plus no charge for warranty work.
Terry Bluhm
Terry Bluhm
1715309648
Nick did a great at my place with both furnace and a/c work. One item took longer than planned, but he stayed and finished the job the same day. I would have Nick back to my place anytime for furnace or a/c work.
Nick Marty
Nick Marty
1715294446
Dallas Winslow
Dallas Winslow
1715283495
Very professional. Thoroughly explains all options and potential issues.
Skyler Holloway
Skyler Holloway
1715283072
Mike was friendly and informative.
Jessica Whalen
Jessica Whalen
1715204274
Dan La Vigne
Dan La Vigne
1715201424
Friendly, informative, and a job well done.Again, friendly, informative, and persistent in doing a good job.
Mike Gunderson
Mike Gunderson
1715196046
I had an old furnace that was on its last legs and needed to be replaced ASAP.Day one: Service Tech arrived 2 hours after initial contact with Aquarius. Sales Rep arrived within an hour of the request. Deal was made and installation appointment scheduled for the NEXT DAY!Day two: Contacted by the installation team at 7:00 am. Arrived at 7:30. Finished up by 2:30.All of the staff that I dealt with were friendly, professional and great to work with. They explained everything very well. I was expecting to wait 2-3 weeks for a new furnace and A/C. This was all done inside of two days. I would 100% recommend Aquarius to anyone needing any type of home service.Tall Mike, Mike Sippel, Chris Oigard, Dave and Luke it was great to work with you. Thanks for everything!Oh, they like dogs too.
Judi Huempfner
Judi Huempfner
1715187572
All went well other than Mike was not made aware of the filters he needed so, new ones were not put in. He is going to have the main office either send or have your Mora guy drop them off. Hopefully, I will not have to wait days for this to happen. Not happy about the lack of not giving Mike the updated info. ( If mailed, I do not feel I should pay the mailing charges)Judi Huempfner
Jerry Chapman
Jerry Chapman
1715175479
Pre- Installation check was professional, quick and courteous.
Joe Thelen
Joe Thelen
1715112582
Lindau Jax
Lindau Jax
1715111238
Brent came out and tuned up the furnace and AC unit! Did a remarkable job, kept me informed and updated on both of our heating and cooling systems
Ellen Malicki
Ellen Malicki
1715108950
Service was on time and completed quickly. Our technician suggested some home remedy’s and was a pleasure to talk too.
Daniel Dean Latham
Daniel Dean Latham
1715105780
YIour electrician Dave, is personable, knowledgeable, and considerate. He was very professional, and kept me informed. You are fortunate to have him on your team : )
Kenny Patten
Kenny Patten
1715095158
Paul did a great job fixing our plumbing problems
Jean Hammer
Jean Hammer
1715037674
Brandon was a great person to work on my air conditioner for the summer season. Really very grateful for his work
Carol Stone
Carol Stone
1715031982
L❤️VE Aquarius!! We had the Kinetico water system installed a couple of years ago and it is the BEST!! Our furnace went out on us in December and Aquarius was out here the next day to give us a quote and by bundling it with a new AC unit we saved 25%!! Travis and a couple other guys came out and installed both our furnace and AC unit and was polite, informative and you would never have known anyone had been here as they left the house clean where they had been working. Today Travis came out to get our AC system started and to change our furnace filter and very kindly showed myself, my son and then my husband how everything works. We are now signed up for both the Kinetico water system service plan and now the furnace/AC service plan and with the discounts we get it actually basically pays for itself. Highly recommend Aquarius and Travis was great!!
Jim Kruzitski
Jim Kruzitski
1715029003
Aquarius Home Services did the electrical work on a bathroom remodel in our downtown Minneapolis condo. The team was thorough and took the time to clean up the work area. It is challenging to find tradespeople that will work in multi-unit dwellings, and I will call on Aquarius in the future.
Dale Fasching
Dale Fasching
1715024926
Ben
Ben
1715020007
Derek did an outstanding job. He was professional, efficient, thorough and left a very clean area when he finished. I would highly recommend Aquarius and Derek.
Jenny Woods
Jenny Woods
1715013159
Erik and John….the Johnson brothers were professionals at their plumbing job at my house…, looks and works good….very knowledgeable and friendly. I will have them finish 2 more jobs at my home.
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