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Vanguard knob will not turn past pilot setting

Pilot is lite, but knob will not turn enough to come on

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You have to press down on it to turn further .

Posted on Dec 09, 2016


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Why does burners and pilot forced off after burners are engaged

We get asked this question many times.

If you light your pilot light, hold in the button and then when you release it and the pilot light goes out, generally you need a new thermocouple. Gas repairs can only be undertaken by a qualified gas technician so you can't do this job yourself.

The thermocouple is a safety device that recognises that the pilot has a good flame and is enough to ignite the main burners. The thermocouple open that valve to the burner.

In limited circumstances the thermocouple doesn't need replacing, either the shield that aims the flame to the thermocouple has become dislodged, or the pilot jet is a little blocked by debris. Either way, having the appliance serviced by a qualified gas fitter is the way to go. I am sure you will have seen news stories about explosions caused by gas leaks and faulty appliances.

Jan 18, 2016 | Procom Heating & Cooling

1 Answer

Rheem NatGas hot water heater model 41V50, basement flooded pilot went our how do I relight?

At the controls there should be a knob that says " Pilot"... "ON" Turn the knob to pilot and hold it down while lighting the pilot lite. Keep holding it down until it gets warm enough that when you leave it up the pilot stays on. Once the pilot lite stays on on it's own turn it to on.

Mar 14, 2011 | Rheem 40 Gallon FVR NATGAS Low WATER...

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We have a vanguard wall heater . MODEL VN2550ITA , serial # 3352415 . it will not stay lite , I have cleaned with a air hose but it will not stay lite . the pilot will lite ,but when you turn it to the...

Jim, it sounds like a gas pressure problem coming to the heater itself. Be sure the gas line shut off valve at or near the appliance is turned all the way ON. Also, check the air intake shutter on the burner to be sure it's not clogged. If it is, vacuum it out with a vacuum that has a hose and a crevice tool attachment.

One other thing to trouble shoot. Trace the wire from the thermocouple at the pilot, back to the control valve. It will be connected with a nut, Try loosening the nut with your fingers. If you can turn it, it's too loose. Finger tighten it and with the appropriately sized open end wrench, turn it only a quarter of a turn more.

Let me know how it works out for you.

Feb 01, 2011 | Vanguard Heating & Cooling

1 Answer

Igniter on my electrnic gas hot water heater does not work but tests good .so what can the problem be

Not enough information but I will try and guess. Assuming that you have a pilot. Set the thermostat to vacation mode. turn the gas valve knob to pilot and push down and then click the pizzo button several times to lite the pilot. You can look through the sight glass at the bottom of the water heater to see if the pilot is lite. If it didn't wait a few minutes and try again and look at the pilot and see if you can see a spark. If it did lite and then when you took pressure off of the knob and if went out you could have a bad thermocouple or a bad gas valve.....hope this helped.

Jan 31, 2011 | Heating & Cooling

1 Answer

When the heater has the pilot lit we can not turn the thermostat to light the elements.

Try pushing the control knob down sightly and turning it counter clockwise to ON position. If it won't turn, this usually indicates that the control valve has locked up. Turn the pilot off and wait 5 minutes, Relight the pilot and try turning it again, as described above. If it still doesn't turn easily, the Control Valve will have to be replaced. It's not an inexpensive part, as it's the heart and brains of the heater.

Also, DESA International the manufacturer of your Vanguard heater is no longer in business. However, some parts are still available. Do a Google search for Vanguard Vent-free Heater Parts and you may have some success in find it for your specific model number.

It's rare for a control valve to lock up or fail. It's usually caused by someone trying to force the control knob to turn with a pair of pliers and usually in the wrong direction. Which breaks the plastic gears inside the control valve. I'm not saying you did this, it's just what usually causes it.

Jan 26, 2011 | Vanguard Heating & Cooling

1 Answer

Polite will stay lite but when you turn it on it will only stay on for a 10 ti 15 minutes and shuts off

Check to see if the pilot flame is hit the themcouple bulb. there is a angle sheild that mount be hind the pilot lite to keep main flame from pulling the Flame up and way from pilot lite and the bulb. If can't find one E-mail me And I will sent you one. Ken's Repair

Jan 18, 2011 | Vanguard International Blue Flame - Large...

1 Answer


Sounds like a weak thermocouple. With the extra heat of the main burner running it can keep the pilot solenoid open...without it it fails shut. Try replacing the thermocouple. (small rod the pilot flame burns against with a skinny copper tube going to gas valve).

Jan 04, 2010 | Heating & Cooling

1 Answer

Pilots lites , holds ok for minutes,but once move

Hello KJGreen, It sounds, based on your description, as though the thermocouple is faulty and should be replaced. If the pilot light stays lit and you've left it on for several minutes before turning the knob on to light the log set, then that indicates that the thermocouple is bad.

The thermocouple is a safety device (heat sensor) designed to stop the flow of gas to the burner in the event the gas flame goes out and the pilot goes out. The sensor will only allow the gas valve to open once it has reached the preset temperature.

To confirm that the thermocouple is defective, I would light the pilot light and allow it to remain lit for up to 10 minutes before I attempted to turn on the log burner. If, after 10 minutes, the log burner still won't stay lit, then you know that the thermocouple needs to be replaced. Otherwise, the burner should light, since after 10 minutes, the sensor should be hot enough to signal the gas valve to open.

If you are going to have this replaced, please make sure you use only an approved supplier, since an incorrect replacement part could cause an unwelcome malfunction of the gas log burner. Safety should be primary when dealing with open flame burners.

Hope you find this Very Helpful and best regards!

Nov 23, 2009 | Vanguard International Infra Red - Large...

1 Answer

I dont know how to relight my furnace not sure where the pilot is please help. Kathi

First thing and this is very important turn the thermostat off. When you are in front of your furnace remove the top cover to expose the burners and pilot light. You will see a gas valve that has a knob, lever, or some kind of switch on top of it. It will have off pilot and on in raised letters on top of it. Now move the knob to pilot position and if you have a long lighter or maybe fireplace match something long enough to reach back into the unit about 10 inches or so. Depress the knob hold down reach back with lite match, lighter and get close to pilot and there it will lite. Hold knob down for about 30 seconds and let go. Did the pilot stay on? Good if it did. Turn the knob to the on position and go to the thermostat and turn on the furnace. Now if you are nervous about lighting the pilot light you could call the gas company in your area and explain your situation and they should come out and do it for free. let me know how it turns out. ken

Dec 17, 2008 | Heating & Cooling

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