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Pilot light won't stay lit

My ageing Vulcan Quasar 40 gas wall heater stopped working yesterday - the pilot light went out. When I try relighting it, it goes out as soon as I release the button.

I have tried turning power off at the mains, waiting 15 mins and starting the process again, but the pilot still won't stay lit.

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  • Anonymous Oct 19, 2008

    mine does the same thing. I light the pilot and it stays lit but soon as i release the button, even slowly it shuts off

  • Anonymous Jan 14, 2009

    I had the same problem, twice. I called the repair man and both times it was because it needed a good cleaning. If there is just a pin hole of dust the pilot light will not stay on; it will light easily, but it will not stay on.

    Use a can of compressed air (like the stuff you use on your computer keys) and spray all around the pilot light and such.

  • Papa0106 Feb 28, 2009

    Had the same problem with my Empire propane wall heater, a three-mantle ceramic catalyst unit with a pilot light. First, the #2 mantle wouldn't burn properly, allowing sheets of blue flame to roll up the face of the ceramic grid and burn the paint off the upper hood of the unit. That proved to be lint/dust in the gas passages, something I was able to remove with a small shop vac. Second, the pilot light became unreliable and would shut off at odd intervals. It had a good bit of yellow in it, and was shaped like a banana. Disassembly showed a wad of dust/lint in the pilot tube, and a quick blow and reassembly put it all right.

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Look for dust and lint. Look for them in places where gas should be freely flowing. I had a similar problem with an Empire Corcho wall-mounted propane ceramic catalyst heater. First it was the pilot light, then the #2 ceramic mantle. After horsing around with the gas lines and pressure regulators and trying to re-aim the pilot, it all turned out to be dust and lint in the gas passages. A little dust bunny in the brass pilot tube gave me a pilot light the shape and color of a banana. One puff of compressed air, and I got back my razor-sharp pilot. And some dust in the chimney of the #2 burner kept it burning blue/yellow and blistering paint off the upper surfaces of the heater. A bit of cleaning with a shop-vac put that right. "Passive" heaters are very much prone to this sort of problem because they rely on convection currents (i.e. LOW velocity) to get the job done. Convection currents are notorious dust collectors, as in COBWEB CITY.

Posted on Feb 28, 2009

Try cleaning the thermal couple. Just remove the ash from around it. If that doesn't work you will have to change out the thermal couple.

Posted on Oct 22, 2008

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