Why A Faulty Water Heater Pilot Light Means You Need Water Heater Repair | Hinckley, IL

Why A Faulty Water Heater Pilot Light Means You Need Water Heater Repair | Hinckley, IL

A water heater is one of those essential appliances in your Hinckley, IL home. It ensures a continuous supply of heated water for all your uses. Imagine starting that chilly day with a lukewarm or even cold shower. That could be frustrating and annoying. Couldn’t it? Although there are various reasons why your water heater isn’t heating your water, one of the main ones is if the pilot light keeps going off.

Many homeowners are disappointed because their water heaters do not heat the water sufficiently just months after installing the unit. But should you replace the water heating unit? Is it normal for the water heater to die on you? Simply, no. A water heater has a lifespan of about 10-12 years (for conventional units) and over 20 years for tankless units. So, rather than shopping for a water heater, have a water heater repair technician inspect the unit and develop recommendations.

What Is a Pilot Light?

There are many components within a water heater. However, the pilot light is your water heating unit’s heart. This is a small flame, blue, that helps burn petroleum gas to produce heat. Without the flame, your water heater would produce heat, meaning no warm water. A technician must inspect it if you notice that the water from the heating unit is lukewarm or even cold.

Why Does the Water Heater Pilot Light Keep Going Off?

Unclean Pilot Tube

This is a prevalent issue with most water heating units. Although a water heater repair technician can quickly address this issue, it is enough to reduce the heating efficiency of the water heater. The pilot tube supplies gas to your water heater’s pilot light to ensure combustion. The flame will go out when the pilot tube has debris or dirt obstruction. If the pilot tube is partially clogged, it supplies little gas for combustion, making the pilot light keep going out.

Fortunately, a professional can resolve this problem by thoroughly cleaning the pilot tube. They have the right tools and experience to ensure that they remove all the dirt and debris lodged in the tube safely without damaging the filters. Avoid this by having a regular water heater inspection.

Dirty Thermocouple

The other reason your water heater’s pilot light keeps going off is if the thermocouple is dirty. The thermocouple is the component responsible for closing the water heating unit’s gas valve whenever it senses that the pilot light has gone off. It prevents any gas leaks.

Hence, the pilot light can keep going out if it is dirty. This is because a layer of grime and dirt will prevent the electrical current from reaching the unit. Hence, the gas supply is cut out, resulting in the pilot light going out. This is also a problem that a technician in Hinckley, IL, can resolve by cleaning the thermocouple.

Kinked Thermocouple

A kinked thermocouple is another reason you might notice that the pilot light keeps going off. Your water heater’s thermocouples should be near the pilot light to open the gas valve and receive heat. Heat won’t be received if it is bent or too far away. Hence, an electrical current won’t be produced. This means that the thermocouple will sense that the pilot light is off, closing the valve and cutting off the gas supply. Fortunately, a water heater repair technician can straighten the thermocouple back to its position, close enough to the pilot light to sense the flame properly.

Faulty Main Control Valve

This is also an issue that can make the pilot light misbehave, though among the rarest. A water heater technician will inspect the thermocouple, flex tube, and pilot tube before inspecting the main control valve for any issues. It is because it hardly ever malfunctions. The main control valve is the unit responsible for regulating the water and gas pressure in your water heater. It is akin to the soul of your water heater.

The main control valve begins the entire process by supplying your water heater with a small volume of gas, and when the pilot light lights up, the valve fully opens, providing a steady gas supply. If faulty, the main control valve will close the gas valve unexpectedly, creating a weak flickering flame. Below are some of the signs that the main control valve is faulty:

  • Whenever you experience scalding hot water that is more than the set temperatures
  • A malfunctioning control knob
  • If the pilot button doesn’t pop even after you press it

Though some water heater repair technicians in Hinckley, claim they can fix the issue, it is recommended that you replace the malfunctioning control valve.

Flex Tube Problems

A flex tube is an elongated tube connecting the burner housing the thermocouple, pilot light, other components, and gas controller. If the flex tube is clogged or damaged, gas won’t be supplied to the unit’s burner for combustion. However, the flex tube issues aren’t as prevalent as thermocouple issues. Hence, the water heater repair technician must ensure that the thermocouple is pristine before paying attention to the flex tube.

Fortunately, the professionals can deal decisively with all flex tube issues. The water heater repair maestro will straighten any kinks, clean and clear any clogs within the tube, and inspect for any other visible damages that might result in a gas leak. Remember, the gas leaks reduce the volume of gas reaching your unit’s burner, which might be the reason for the flickering or frequent shut-off of the pilot light.

Let Us Help You with Water Heater Repair

Have you noticed that the water heater’s pilot light constantly goes out? At Just In Time, we can help. We have professionally trained water heater repair technicians who can quickly diagnose this issue’s cause. They will also fix the issue to ensure that your Hinckley, IL home has a constant supply of heated water. Call us at any time for a water heater repair and maintenance service.

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