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Pesky Pilot Light Problems

If you’ve got a gas furnace at home, chances are pretty good that you know what your pilot light is. For everyone else, the pilot light is the flame that is used to light the gas burners that eventually heat your home. The pilot light provides a pretty simple yet integral part of the heating process.

So why are we talking about it? Well, problems with your pilot light can mean your heating system comes to a screeching halt, which is absolutely unacceptable during some cold winter days. We’d like to go over some of the more common pilot light problems and the possible solutions for said problems. Obviously, if you’ve got a gas furnace in Plymouth, IN and you’re experiencing any sort of problem, we highly recommend calling our team for specialized furnace care.

Pilot Problems

Issues with a pilot light can range anywhere from a minor inconvenience to a serious safety hazard depending on what’s going on with the furnace itself. We’ll get into more detail below.

Understanding the Pilot

Before we can begin to approach fixing a pilot light, we need to talk about what exactly is a pilot light. Within your furnace lies a device called a thermocouple. The thermocouple acts as a sensor for your furnace to see if the heat produced by the burner is hot enough to burn the fuel. If the pilot light isn’t producing enough heat from the flame, the thermocouple will shut off the gas valve. This is incredibly necessary to keep gas from leaking into your home and causing fires or explosions. Basically, without the heat from a pilot light, the thermocouple won’t allow any gas through.

Lighting the Pilot Light

Sometimes the pilot light goes out for any number of reasons. Before you attempt to light your pilot light make sure you take a look at the instruction manual for your specific model of furnace. If your gas furnace has a specific way to relight the pilot, then you should always default to those instructions.

Some systems require you to relight the pilot by using either a match or a lighter, others have their own pilot light switches on them. You’re going to want to make sure you’re doing precisely the right lighting for your system so that you don’t risk breaking anything or injuring yourself.

Irregular Flame

If you managed to relight the pilot light but it looks irregular, you’re going to have to take note of that. If the flame is yellow instead of blue (or any other color aside from blue for that matter) then it could be functioning at the incorrect temperature. Also, if the flame seems to be flickering, then you’ve got a pretty bad draft inside your furnace that might lead to the pilot light going out again.

Hopefully, next time your heater stops working because the pilot light is out, you’ve got a bit more information to find the source of the issue. If you’re ever confused about a pilot light issue, or would rather have a professional handle your burners, there’s always our team.

For all your gas furnace problems, call Collier’s Heating & Air Conditioning. Colliers—A company you’ve grown to trust.

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