Man Thinking About Furnace Pilot Light Problem

Why Doesn’t My Furnace Pilot Light Stay Lit in Maryville, TN?

November 29, 2023

The pilot light is the ignition source for the burners in gas furnaces. If the pilot light doesn’t stay on, the furnace simply can’t generate heat. This is an especially annoying problem for Maryville, TN, residents to experience — and not only for that reason. Here are a few likely explanations for why your furnace’s pilot light won’t stay lit:

Debris Buildup Around the Pilot Light

The most direct explanation for why your furnace’s pilot light won’t stay lit is that dirt or soot has accumulated around the pilot light orifice. If this happens, the debris will obstruct the valve leading to the pilot light, and the flame either won’t light at all or will light very weakly.

Cleaning the pilot light orifice is a job for an HVAC professional, as it requires disassembling parts of the furnace. This can be dangerous since you may trigger a gas leak if you try this on your own without knowing what you’re doing. HVAC professionals recommend cleaning the orifice at least twice a year. It’s a good idea to do this as part of furnace maintenance.

Filthy Furnace Filters

If you’ve kept the same air filters in your furnace for too long, they’re bound to become exceptionally dirty — so dirty that they will begin to inhibit airflow through your furnace. If you don’t address this problem and change your filters, it’ll have all-around negative consequences for your furnace’s performance. One possible result is that your furnace’s heat exchanger may overheat and malfunction, preventing the pilot light from igniting.

Bad Gas Valve in the Heating System

The gas valve delivers gas to all of the parts of your furnace where it needs to go. If this valve doesn’t open and close when necessary, whether as a result of obstruction or direct physical damage, pilot light ignition won’t happen.

A malfunctioning pilot light can also be dangerous for your home since it also serves as a carbon monoxide detector. If you sense something is wrong with your furnace, don’t hesitate to bring in a professional. Call LB Chase Mechanical to ask for our heating repair services today.

Image provided by iStock

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