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You most likely have a bad thermocouple that needs to be replaced, but other causes can be a blocked flue, sooted-up burner chamber, strong down draft from wind blowing out your pilot from improper venting or high temp switch is bad or needs to be reset. Need more info on your type of heater to diagnose it. Check the pilot flame when lit and see if it is heating the thermocouple and making it red hot. It should be a nice firm blue pilot flame. Lazy yellow pilot flames may not be heating the thermocouple enough or has caused the thermocouple tip to be burnt off and is now failing to keep the pilot lit.
I would first concentrate on the pilot flame, and thermocouple. Make sure pilot flame is good and strong , and thermocouple end above flame is cleaned well. If flame appears proper, sometimes a good rub down on thermocouple end with fine steel wool will do the trick. The thermocouple senses the heat from the pilot and thus signals gas valve that it's ok to send gas for operation. If debris collects on that thermocouple and it doesn't sense proper heat from pilot flame, it will not signal gas valve to open.
Look at your thermocouple. Is it glowing red from being heated by the pilot flame? Is the pilot flame blue or yellow? You may have a dirty pilot orifice that is not heating your thermocouple enough to keep it lit after the burner cycles off. A yellow flame will eventually burn the tip of the thermocouple, which causes more frequent problems and eventually it will not work at all. If you have a can of compressed air with attached straw, use it to blow out the pilot orifice (with the gas off) where the pilot flame usually burns. Then examine the tip of the thermocouple and see if it is still round and smooth. Jagged or irregular tips mean it should be replaced. A blue pilot flame and a new thermocouple should do it. Hope that fixes it for you. Douglas
It can either be your pilot orifice is dirty and not sufficiently heating the thermocouple or your thermocouple is defective and needs to be replaced. Is your pilot flame yellow or blue? It should be a strong blue flame impinging directly on the thermocouple. If it's not, shut it down, take a can of compressed air and blow out the dust, spider web or whatever is inside the pilot assembly where the pilot flame is. Then try relighting it and see if that improves the flame and keeps it lit. Otherwise, just replace the thermocouple. Douglas
Hello, Here's a few things to check. When you light the pilot, is it a strong blue pilot flame, a weak blue flame or a lazy yellow flame? Is it heating the thermocouple enough to make it red hot after a few minutes? If the pilot is small blue or lazy yellow flame, it may be dirty and need cleaned. When the burner lights, the weak pilot flame may diminish causing the
thermocouple to cool off enough to shut down the main burner. Clean the dirty pilot orifice by using a can of compressed air with
attached straw. (The same canned air you use to clean computer keyboards) Blow it into the pilot assembly where the pilot flame burns out from and blow thru the air holes on the side, if applicable. You might also check the thermocouple itself to make sure the tip is not partially burn't off. It should be a smooth, rounded tip. Replace the thermocouple if cleaning the pilot orifice doesn't solve the problem. Douglas
The pilot remains on because of a signal from the thermocouple to the valve. The thermocouple needs the pilot to remain lit for approximately 60 seconds prior to being able to send a proper signal to the gas valve. Be sure to keep the button pressed for 60 seconds prior to releasing it.
If after 60 seconds, the pilot extinguishes as soon as the button is released, the problem is generally going to be with either the thermocouple or the pilot orifice. The pilot orifice can become clogged which affects the flame. This, in turn, will prevent it from properly heating the thermocouple. I do not recommend disassembling the pilot assembly to clean the orifice unless you are a trained, qualified service technician. If this job is not performed properly it could lead to personal injury and/or death. However, there is a trick that sometimes works......you can try tapping the pilot assembly with a screwdriver.....this can sometimes loosen debris on the top of the orifice allowing for better pilot.
If the flame is not the problem, chances are good you have a bad thermocouple. The thermocouple can be purchased at your local hardware store for approx $10.00 - $20.00. I'm going to include a link to a YouTube video showing you how to replace a thermocouple.
If these steps do not work, you should consult with a trained, qualified service technician. At this point you most likely need to have the pilot assembly professionally cleaned and/or you need to have the gas valve replaced.
ALWAYS remember to keep a working <5 year old Carbon Monoxide detector in your main living area and in your master bedroom. Carbon Monoxide is colorless, odorless, and deadly. If you do not already have these devices installed, GET THEM. They, too, can be purchased through your local hardware store.
If the pilot light keeps going out,make sure the thermocouple is in the flame of the pilot light,if it is not fully in the flame,then try to adjust it to where it will be in the flame.If it can not be adjusted,to keep from replacing it,take a stick of tubing,steel,or copper,about 3/16 and cut a piece of it out.Just enough to slide over the tip of the thermocouple that will be in the flame of the thermocouple.Steel brake line tubing works great.This piece of steel tubing will last fore ever,or close to it,
The thermocoupler is faulty. It is that bulb that sits i the pilot flame. It controls the gas valve so you won't get any gas if the pilot goes out.. So, the thermocoupler needs to be replaced. Inexpensive and easy fix. Good Luck _Ned_
There is a small probe that is heated by the pilot flame. This is called a thermocouple & keeps the gas valve open by generating a small electric current. Most likely the pilot flame is too small, or not heating the thermocouple properly. Either turn the pilot up a bit, or gently bent the thermocouple bracket to put it in the flame a bit more. Do not try to bend the thermocouple itself. If this does not help, a new thermocouple may be needed.