What To Do If My Heating System’s Pilot Light Went Out?

If you’re trying to figure out what to do if the pilot light on your furnace or boiler went out, it’s important that you understand the safety risks involved. A pilot light that goes out is not unheard of, so luckily, we are here to help you learn what to do!

Why Is My Pilot Light Out?

The pilot light is out when the pilot light goes out, which means there is an issue with the fuel supply.

Another common reason the pilot may not stay lit is an issue with your gas valve itself. Sometimes a dirty gas valve can be the cause of poor pilot light efficiency as dirt can clog openings around the flame.

Keep an eye out on your thermocouple as well, because often homeowners may not realize that the thermocouple is behind many of the issues they have been noticing with their furnace in the past.

Lastly, take into account the age of your heating system when inspecting the pilot light. IF your pilot light is going out often in a system under five years old, you need repairs. However, with a system that is over ten years old, you might want to consider a replacement as this heating system is getting to an age where repairs are not cost-effective.

My Pilot Light Won’t Stay Lit

If your pilot light is lit, but the furnace or boiler won't start check to see if the thermostat is set to “heat.” We know some of you are laughing at this, but you would be surprised how many homeowners accidentally forget to check their thermostats! It happens to the best of us.

Inspect the thermocouple; this device senses whether or not gas is flowing through your system and relays this information back to the ignition switch, which will not let your system run until there is an adequate supply of natural gas available for combustion. If its wires have become unplugged or been damaged by a power surge, a professional replacement will bee required.

Getting The Flame Back

If your pilot light goes out, you may want to relight it. But before you do, take a moment to reset the pilot light on your heating system. The knob or button on your heating that resets the pilot light will take a minute to function, so be patient. What the rest does is allow gas to cycle out, and prevent a build-up of gas from accumulating before you light a match.

After a few minutes, you can safely relight your pilot light. Stay around your heating system to make sure that your pilot light stays lit! Sometimes leaks or even damaged components can cause pilot lights to go out after being re-lit.

Whenever inspecting your heating system, always refer to manufacturer instructions! While our advice is general, unfortunately, we need to be so as each appliance is different according to manufacturer specifications. If you do not have the original manual, it is time to call the pros! You do not want to do gas repairs blind without any instructions or experience.