4 Reasons Why Your Water Heater Won't Light

4 Reasons Why Your Water Heater Won't Light

The pilot light is typically to blame if you discover there is no hot water in a natural gas or propane water heater. If you have tried to relight the pilot light but to no avail, there might be other issues that prevent the pilot light from being lit. Here are four reasons why your water heater won’t light up!


 The most frequent reason for a pilot light that fails to relight or that extinguishes immediately after lighting is a faulty thermocouple. Appliances for gas-powered heating must include thermocouples. Gas may leak into the area around a water heater if the pilot light on the device ever goes out, posing a risk of an explosion and a health concern. 

Appliances employ a thermocouple as a fail-safe circuit to determine whether the pilot light is still burning to avoid this from happening. The thermocouple stays warm, and the pilot gas valve is kept open when the pilot light is still burning. The valve closes if the pilot light goes out, which also lowers the voltage across the thermocouple and lowers the thermocouple temperature.

Pilot Tube

If the thermocouple is functioning properly, a dirty pilot tube is another possible reason why a heater won't light. The appropriate flow of gas to the pilot light and burner system can get obstructed by the buildup of dirt, oil, and even carbon. Fortunately, resolving this is a rather simple and uncomplicated process.

Use a needle or another thin, robust piece of metal to clear out the tube after turning off the gas and waiting for a few minutes for the pilot to cool. You should remove any large objects that might be impeding the tube and scrape the inside surfaces of the tube clean.

After thoroughly cleaning, turn everything back on to check whether the pilot will light. Repeat until everything is completely cleaned if it doesn't ignite.

Flex Tubing

The flex tubing is another potential factor that may be contributing to the pilot light's inability to stay lit. The gas controller is connected to this tubing. It will guarantee a steady supply of gas for the pilot light and burner systems. Sometimes, this tube will get twisted, damaged, or deteriorated, which will inhibit appropriate gas flow.

Straightening the tubing should address the problem if it has been twisted. It will be necessary to install new tubing if the tube is worn, or damaged, or if attempting to straighten it proves unsuccessful.

Main Control Valve

It is rare that a malfunctioning main control valve may result in a pilot light going out. Gas main control valves are typically among the last parts of your water heater to break down. If the main control valve is broken, it must be changed to solve the issue.

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