How to Lite a pilot Light on a Water Heater

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How to Properly Light a Pilot Light on A Water Heater

Gas water heaters with tanks have a pilot light which is used to ignite the gas burner. When the pilot light does out, the water does not get heated. Therefore, it is important to know how you can light the pilot light to get your hot shower water back. There is also a safety concern here, in case of a damaged flame sensor some gas might leak out of the tank and hence you must immediately fix the situation.

The advice is given as general advice and does not substitute for professional services. If you feel your water Heater may have a gas leak please call a professional plumber immediately.

Signs that the pilot light is out and why it happens

There are three quick and simple ways to know if there is an issue with the pilot light:

1.The water doesn’t heat up: If you are getting cold water from the heater then a possible cause be an issue with the pilot light and you must start your diagnosis with it.

2.Error message: Depending on the model of your heater you will see either an error message or a blinking light. If the sign indicated that the pilot light is out, you need to act upon it.

3.You do not see the flame: Visual inspection is a very important step and even if you are using the error message or status light for diagnosis, doing a double check is always wise. Underneath the unit there is a gap and that’s where you can spot the flame when the heater is functional.

The pilot keeps going out if there is dirt around the opening of the pilot light and you can recognize this by the color of the flame. A steady blue flame signifies that the pilot light is working fine. If you see a flame that  is either  yellow or orange in color and  waving there is possibly  dirt and other pollutants accluminating at the opening of the pilot light.

Pilot light keeps the therm-couple warm, which is turn keeps the gas flowing. If the therm-couple has a problem or is dirty, it will not respond to the heat generated and shut the flow of gas off.  With no fuel coming in the pilot light also goes out.

Turning the pilot light on

Before you start to work on the pilot light and attempt to turn it on make sure there is no gas leak. Trying to ignite a flame with a gas leak can be deadly. 

Here is how to check for a gas leak in the gas line to your water heater.

Once you are sure, you need to open the cover to access the pilot light, make sure you have a flashlight with you. Turn the gas knob to point towards ‘Pilot’ and while you hold it down, use the ignition switch to ignite.

Once the flame is on, slowly release the knob and turn the gas knob to ‘On’. Though this sounds simple to do, utmost care and caution must be practices while you try to light the pilot light.

If you have a problem with the pilot light or need expert advise on how you can turn it on in the right way, you can reach out to the team of professionals at A Clear Choice Plumbing & Heating LLC

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