How to Check and Relight Your Pilot Light

If you have a gas appliance in your home, then it likely has a pilot light burning away to keep the appliance functioning. Your gas furnace and water heater are two places where you might find a pilot light, although some newer units may not have them. While these appliances are running, a small amount of gas is released to keep this bright blue flame alight.

If you find that you have no hot water coming from the faucet or that your gas heating system is not working properly, then one of the first things you should do is check that the pilot light is still lit.

Where to find the pilot light

Finding your pilot light is usually straightforward, but it will depend on the type of appliance. Many heaters have a small window that allows you to see the flame, so you’ll immediately be able to see whether or not it is lit in this case. This may be hidden behind a small door or panel.

If you can’t see where the pilot light is, then look for the burner chamber door at the bottom of the heater and open the access door. Locate the pilot light tube inside the burner chamber, and this is where you should find the pilot light. If there is not a blue flame, then your pilot light is out.

Relighting your pilot light

If your pilot light is out, then your gas appliance will not be functioning properly, so it is essential that you relight it. An unlit pilot light can also be dangerous as the appliance may still be releasing gas. If there isn’t a fault with the pilot light, then relighting it should be straightforward. It might have simply gone out because a strong breeze blew it out, for example.

You should find a dial near the pilot light with three settings – On, Off, Pilot. Firstly, switch the unit to ‘off’ to stop the flow of gas, then just wait a few minutes for any excess gas to dissipate. After this time has passed, get a match or a lighter ready and switch the dial to ‘pilot’ to activate the gas flow again. Push and hold the reset button on your unit and hold your lit match or lighter to the opening to relight the flame.

When to call a professional

If you are unsure about the process detailed above, then you might choose to call a professional to take care of it instead. Similarly, if the pilot light will not stay lit after following the above process, then it is important to get it checked out by a professional technician to determine what the problem is.

If you need help with the pilot light on your water heater or other gas appliances, then we can send out an emergency plumber to provide the help you need. Get in touch for bathroom and kitchen plumbing services around Lewisville, Clemmons, and Winston Salem.

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