why does my gas hot water heater keep turning off
If you have a gas water heater that keeps shutting off, you most likely have one of these 4 issues:
Dirty pilot light Faulty thermopile Bad gas valve Dirty or clogged air inlet Unfortunately, you ll need a professional to fix any of these problems. But we ll explain how each of these problems can cause your water heater to shut off frequently. Important note: If there is a strong smell of natural gas coming from your water heater, leave your home and call a professional immediately to avoid a natural gas explosion. Need a professional now? and we ll send one over right away. Your water heater s pilot light controls when the gas burners inside the heater come on. Here s how the process works: Once the pilot light is on, the thermopile activates the main gas burners to heat your water So, as long as the pilot light lights, you ll get hot water. Over time, though, the tip of the pilot burner (called the orifice ) can become clogged with soot and other debris.
And when this happens, enough gas can t get through the orifice to create a steady flame. A dirty pilot burner is most likely your problem if you see a weak, flickering yellow flame coming from your pilot burner instead of a strong, blue flame that stands at a max of inch high. What to do: and inspect it for signs of damage. Your thermopile is a straight metal rod that sits next to your pilot burner and activates the gas controls of your water heater. How? Well, it s designed to turn the heat from your pilot light into electrical energy. Once the pilot light s flame heats the thermopile to a certain point, the thermopile creates enough electrical energy to power the electronics inside the gas controls. Sometimes, though, if the thermopile is dirty or needs to be replaced, it won t be able to generate enough electrical power to activate the gas controls even if the pilot light is lit (translation: no hot water). What to do: to decide whether it simply needs to be cleaned or if it needs to be completely replaced.
Your gas valve is what delivers natural gas directly to your water heater. Gas from this valve lights your pilot light and eventually lights the gas burners that heat your water. But if this valve or its inner elements are damaged, it can t deliver enough gas to your water heater, causing it to shut on and off. If you ve ruled out problems with your pilot light or thermocouple, your water heater s gas valve is most likely to blame. What to do:. Today s gas water heaters have air inlet screens at the bottom of the water heater that can get clogged with dust, dirt, soot, cat hair, lint, etc. And if that screen is clogged, it doesn t let in enough air to keep the gas burners burning. What to do:. If you re still struggling with a water heater that keeps shutting off, we can help. and we ll send over an experienced plumber who can diagnose and repair your water heater. There is nothing more frustrating when trying to run a hot bath than when your water heater keeps turning off.
If your water heater pilot light will not stay lit, it is important to fix it immediately. There are many reasons your water heater igniter might turn itself off. Often, when your water heater wonвt ignite, itвs due to the thermocouple. This device detects whether your pilot light is on by generating a heat-powered electrical current. If the thermocouple has cooled, it assumes that your water heater pilot light is off and your water heater wonвt ignite. A faulty thermocouple can cause problems with your water heater not staying lit. Dirty thermocouple: If you can light your pilot light, but the pilot keeps going out, there are many possible causes. One of them is a dirty thermocouple. When you have a problem with your water heater not lighting, look at your water heater pilot light. Inspect the thermocouple to determine if it is dirty. If so, turn off the gas and allow the thermocouple to cool, then clean it by gently sanding with fine sandpaper.
Then turn the gas back on and attempt to light the pilot. Bent thermocouple: Sometimes, when your gas water heater won t stay lit, if you check the thermocouple, you may see that it has been bent. This will prevent the pilot light from heating it. This will cause the thermocouple to turn off the supply of gas, and then your water heater won t light. To avoid your water heater going out, bend the thermocouple so it is closer to the pilot light. Dirty pilot tube: Sometimes, your gas water heater won t light due to a dirty pilot tube. Use a needle to remove any blockages when the pilot tube has cooled. Damaged thermocouple: If none of these techniques work, it is possible your thermocouple is damaged and needs to be or repaired. For help getting your water heater running, contact the experts at today. We have been proudly serving Northwest Indiana and south Chicagoland since 1951.
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