Dealing With A Pilot That Doesn’t Stay On

Photo of electrician inspecting electrical panel

With traditional heating systems, pilot light is the key to your furnace properly functioning to heat your home. Without your pilot light, you can kiss being cozy in the winter goodbye, so what happens when your pilot light will not stay on? Before you go window shopping for a new furnace, here are some tips to hopefully put your mind at ease and potentially fix your pilot light issues.

Thermocouple Woes

The most significant cause of a pilot light not staying lit can be linked to the hating system’s thermocouple not functioning correctly. To put it simply, think of the thermocouple as the component in your heating system that helps ignite the gas being fed into your heating system.

Thermocouples are heated, and when they reach a specific temperature, it sends an electric current to ignite the gas that heats your home.

When a thermocouple is damaged, it will not correctly sense heat, causing a safety mechanism to close off the gas valve and leave your home without a functioning pilot light.

Types Of Damage

The most common issue with thermocouples can come from the wire being bent, causing a faulty pilot light. The best solution is to hire a professional to inspect your system to replace the thermocouple when it comes to bent thermocouples.

You would not guess it, but sometimes thermocouples can be faulty due to excess dirt! Yes, that’s right, not cleaning your thermocouple can lead to a build-up of dirt that causes issues with ignition and leaves you with a faulty furnace.

The Other Cause Of A Faulty Pilot Light

Sometimes you may not have a damaged thermocouple but instead have an issue with your heating system kettling. With water heaters, sometimes mineral deposits can build up in the system, causing a rattling sound, and a safety mechanism will close off the gas valve. Depending on the mineral deposit build-up, the solution can either be a simple deep cleaning or possibly replacing the heat exchanger.

At Cunningham Associates we know that troubleshooting your heating system can be tedious, which is why we are here to help/. When you call us at (770) 343-7565, we are ready to take the bulk of the work so you can focus on relaxing this winter.