It’s a homeowner’s worst nightmare in the winter – the furnace going out unexpectedly. But if you’re lucky, the solution may be relatively quick and painless, such as relighting the pilot.
There are several reasons for pilot lights to be extinguished, the most common of which include dirt buildup around the pilot light and a malfunctioning thermocouple. If your furnace pilot light is out, follow the instructions that come with your unit or reset the system to ignite the pilot light.
3 steps to relight your furnace pilot
- Find the label with instructions to light the furnace. If you can easily read the instructions on the sticker, follow them exactly. If not, move on to step 2.
- Find the pilot light and the furnace “on/off” switch. These are usually located near the bottom of the furnace. IMPORTANT: Turn the switch “Off” and wait AT LEAST 5 MINUTES to give gas from within the furnace time to disperse. Find the “reset” button while you are waiting. You’ll need to know where this is as you move to step 3.
- Turn the knob to “Pilot” and hold down the “Reset” button. Using a long lighter, bring the flame close to the pilot opening. This should ignite the pilot light. Once the pilot is lit, you can release the reset button. The pilot should stay lit at this point.
A few pro tips to keep in mind:
- Never try to light a pilot light without turning the furnace off. This can lead to serious bodily harm or home damage. It is crucial to wait at least five minutes after turning the furnace off before attempting to light the pilot light.
- When lighting the pilot, keep your hands as far away from the flame as possible. Using a lighter with a long barrel or a long matchstick is the best way to light a pilot light. Use extreme caution when handling an open flame near your furnace!
- If lighting the pilot doesn’t work after a few attempts of this process, you might want to try cleaning the area around the pilot light. A buildup of dirt or debris in the area can cause the flame to be extinguished or prevent it from being lit at all.
Don’t forget the thermocouple
Another common cause for pilot light problems is a malfunctioning thermocouple. A good way to tell if the thermocouple isn’t working properly is if the pilot light ignites but goes out after releasing the “reset” button, as this is a sign that there is a block in the pilot tube. Thermocouples can be replaced; however, we recommend calling in an HVAC professional to handle the task.
Furnace repair in Buffalo, MN
Still having issues? It could be that there is another underlying issue that needs to be addressed. To make your furnace pilot light issues a thing of the past, call the expert team at DeZiel Heating & AC. Schedule an appointment today by calling (763) 684-3965.