Why Is Your Heating System's Pilot Light Not Remaining On? Find Out

Posted on: 30 September 2022

Although many furnace manufacturers incorporate electronic ignition, older units use a standing pilot flame to start the system. Thus, if the pilot light goes out, the heating system does not ignite the light for the gas burner. This creates an uncomfortable atmosphere that may be unbearable for your home's occupants. Therefore, you need to engage the services of an HVAC specialist to inspect and diagnose the issue. They establish the cause of the malfunction and remedy it for peak functionality. Below are possible reasons for your pilot going off:

The Age and Condition of the System

If your unit is approaching the end of its service life, its pilot light may start to malfunction. This is due to the age-related deterioration of components, reducing their efficiency. In addition, if the thermocouple accumulates dust, the current may be unable to reach it. This cuts off the gas supply, turning off the pilot light. Accordingly, you should hire a service technician to replace worn-out parts and restore efficiency. The professional also cleans dirt and grime off the thermocouple for effective current flow.

A Bent Thermocouple

If your thermocouple bends, it will restrict the flame from reaching it. This may occur if the component is bent or acquires kinks during a non-professional installation. On the other hand, the thermocouple may fail due to mechanical or chemical stress, preventing electricity from flowing. As a result, the pilot will go off and close the gas valves. Therefore, it is important that you engage an HVAC contractor to straighten the thermocouple into position. Generally, they may bend the thermocouple using the bending template to avoid squashing it.

A Broken Thermocouple

The furnace thermocouple may have broken if your pilot light goes off. This is due to oxidation in the thermocouple, which wears it down, constricting the wires. Additionally, your thermocouple may suffer from metal fatigue due to constant expansion and contraction. As a result, the pilot goes off, stopping the gas supply. So, you need to contact an HVAC repairer to replace the thermocouple for optimal functionality. Moreover, they seal the thermocouple to prevent oxidation.

Poor Location

The pilot light can go off if you place your thermostat in a confined and enclosed area. This positioning leads to the furnace running out of combustible air, impeding the pilot light's function. To resolve the problem, contact an HVAC contractor to position your furnace in a spot with constant airflow for proper ignition.

A pilot light that keeps going off may render your heating unit inoperable. Hence, schedule regular HVAC maintenance with a heating and air conditioning repair expert to service your furnace for effective performance.


Lowering Your HVAC Expenses

After we purchased our very first home, I realized that I was really struggling with paying for the heating and cooling costs. We were spending much, much more money every month than we thought we were going to, and it was really difficult to figure out what we should do. We thought long and hard about how to minimize our expenses, but we didn't really get anywhere until we talked with an HVAC contractor. He mentioned specific, actionable ways to lower our bill, such as programming our thermostat and using more of our ceiling fans. This blog is all about lowering your bill.

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