Water Heater Pilot Light Won’t Stay Lit; Why and How to Fix It

Have your water heater pilot light won’t stay lit? Water heater pilot light holds important key to heat the water at your home. It is used to light the gas for water heating so you can have hot water. If there is a malfunction, the water heater pilot light won’t light and can’t heat the water.

Let’s just say you have to do with cold shower in the morning. You won’t notice it until the cold water hit you because you have not been paying attention to your water heater. What should you do? You can light the heater again by yourself using barbecue lit if what it needs is only to be relight again.

But there are more complicated issues that cause the pilot light goes out. Below are the common problems of the water heater pilot light and how to fix the issues:

Water Heater Pilot Light Wont Stay Lit

The Thermocouple

Thermocouple is the safety device to sense the water heater pilot is on or not. There are some issues that can cause the thermocouple malfunction. The first one is that the thermocouple is blocked. This happens when the thermocouple is dirty.

The thermocouple won’t be able to receive the report from the electric current then lead to a gas outage. Then, hot water pilot won’t light. When this happens, turn off the gas and wait for the thermometer to cool down, then you can simply clean the thermocouple using sandpaper.

Thermocouple water heater pilot

The second problem that can be found with the thermocouple is that the thermocouple might be curved. This problem usually occurs when the thermocouple get bend too far from the pilot to the point that the thermocouple loses its function. It can also causes the water heater pilot light won’t stay lit.

When problem like this occurs, you can simply bend the thermocouple back to its original place with a thumb-distance with the pilot light. Do not forget to follow the previous safety before doing this. The third problem is damaged thermocouple.

When the previous two problems do not show themselves, it is possible that the thermocouple is damaged. The only way to fix this is to call the repairmen and replace the old thermocouple with the new one.

Dirty Pilot Tube

When there is nothing wrong with the thermocouple, the next issue comes from the pilot tube getting dirty. Dirt and grime in the pilot tube can block the flow of gas. To fix this issue, turn off the gas and wait for the pilot to cool down. Then, use needle to clean the pilot tube. Make sure to clean it thoroughly, and then turn everything on.

Main Gas Control Valve

This problem is the most unlikely to happen in most cases. Take careful precaution before thinking that this might be the reason for your problem. To check if the main control valve is bad or not, you can test the thermocouple with a multitester. If the main control is damage and the only way to do is to replace it. Call the professional for help because if you don’t, your water heater pilot light won’t stay lit.