September 22, 2016
A common call we get from Aurora homeowners is: “Why won’t my gas furnace pilot light stay lit?”
So, it was no surprise when Mark, a homeowner in Aurora, called saying that his furnace’s pilot light had gone out and he couldn’t get it to relight.
We dispatched our technician, Bob Simmons, right away to fix the furnace.
When Bob arrived, he first needed to find the cause of the problem — this is performing a diagnostic.
While investigating the 13-year-old furnace, Bob found that the igniter was busted and that the flame sensor was covered in soot.
What are these parts and why would this prevent the pilot's light from lighting?
Let us explain.
What a furnace igniter looks like
A furnace igniter is a silicon carbon element that glows red-hot when the voltage is applied to it.
In a standing pilot light furnace, the igniter is part of an indirect electronic ignition system. Its role in this system is to automatically light the pilot when your thermostat calls for heat.
But if the igniter is busted, which was the case for Mark, the pilot won’t light, which means the furnace burners won’t ignite either.
However, even if the igniter works and lights the pilot flame, the furnace still won’t work if the flame sensor is dirty and covered in soot. When covered in soot, the flame sensor can’t sense that the pilot flame is lit, causing the sensor to shut off the flow of gas to the pilot, preventing it from lighting.
Given that Mark had a broken igniter and a dirty flame sensor, here’s what Bob did to fix the problem.
Bob first replaced the igniter and then cleaned soot off the pilot’s flame. He then tested his work by running the furnace through several cycles to check for any lingering issues, but there were none.
Another fixed furnace. Another satisfied customer!
“Excellent service. Fast, friendly, and knowledgeable. Pleasant and professional experience. Great work!” - Mark C., review on Better Business Bureau Website.
For your convenience, you can request an appointment in one of two ways: