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Don't really think the gas company would be checking your pool heater, they most likely just checked their gas connections. I would suspect a few things; control module, thermostat, gas valve, pressure switch. You say you get pilot light, and as long as it doesn't turn off and on, as if it is not being sensed, then I would suggest the control module is fine. If the pilot and main burner is controlled by the same valve, and your pilot light stays lit, then I would suggest the thermostat is fine. I take back the pressure switch since the pilot will ignite. I would check power to the gas valve solenoid and see if the control module is trying to open the gas valve. I would suspect low voltage, probably around 24v. If voltage is present and no gas, I would say you found the problem.
I had the same problem. It was my igniter. It was all corroded and oxidized. Would not properly ignite the gas fast enough and when it finally ignited, the excess gas in the chamber would explode and put out the flame and cycle over and over with bang. Took igniter out, cleaned and filed down the copper prongs. Replaced and all was well.
Is this a millivolt or electric ignition heater? You can tell by the connections: gas only = millivolt, gas + electrical conduit = electric ignition.
Sometimes people ridicule us for asking the obvious, but I thought this would be helpful:
1) Are your operating the heater with the pump running?
2) Is the gas to the heater turned on; either at the propane valve (is there propane in the tanks?) or is the valve at the meter for natural gas in the on position. IF is the code for ignition failure on Hayward Heaters. This could be related to a bad igniter or plugged burner orifices. Failure often indicates that the sensor wire to the ignitor is bad, rather than the ignitor itself. Inspect this wire, and if the sheathing is cracked or worn, replace it.
If the gas pressure and supply is OK, the proper order for parts replacement would be:Sensor wire, then the ignitor, then the gas valve. To inspect the igniter for operation, remove the igniter and turn the heater on and watch for a spark (don't hold it, you'll get zapped!). If you don't see one, try adjusting the spark generator relative to the metal ground around it. Clean out the area where it mounts as best you can. We have serviced similar issues several times where spiders or debris actually kept the spark from reaching the gas. Check here for manual and diagrams on all Hayward products http://www.haywardnet.com/inground/products/manuals.com
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The Ugly Pool Guy