Why Won’t My Boiler Pilot Light Come On?

Is your furnace on the fritz? Call Complete Comfort Control at 631-910-6702 for the Hamptons’ reliable heating repair services.

The pilot light remains lit 24 hours a day regardless of when your boiler operates. Without it, your boiler wouldn’t power up to keep your home warm when the temperature starts dipping. If you realize your boiler didn’t click on, you’ll likely check to see if the boiler light is ignited.

You might fumble to try and light the component, all the while wondering, “Why won’t my boiler pilot light come on?” Complete Comfort Control helps you identify the problem below. 

Is Your Pilot Light Out?

First, make sure your pilot light or the components that influence it are causing the problem. Start by inspecting the pilot light. You might notice that the flame has gone out or has a yellowish color. If you observe either, you should investigate further or call a technician to service your pilot light.

Next, ensure your boiler hasn’t sprung a dangerous gas leak. The following signs often accompany a gas leak:

  • An odor that resembles rotten eggs or sulfur
  • Dead plants in the area immediately surrounding the boiler
  • Hissing sounds

If you notice any of these signals, turn off your gas supply, call emergency services, and get in touch with your trusted HVAC service provider immediately. 

#1 Thermocouple Problems

Your boiler contains a network of intricate parts working together. Among them is the thermocouple. An extinguished pilot light signals to the thermocouple to cut the gas flow from the gas valve. This safety feature protects your property from potentially explosive substances.

A malfunctioning thermocouple might preemptively shut off the gas supply feeding into your boiler. This prevents your pilot light from staying ignited. Some common thermocouple problems include:

  • Broken parts
  • Bad connections between the pilot light and thermocouple
  • Soot or dirt sediment covering the component

#2 Dirty Pilot Tube

The pilot tube connects to the pilot light, facilitating the gas flow that ignites the light. This mechanism is integral to the boiler’s overall operations. Without it, the pilot light gets no gas upon which it can feed and stay lit.

Soot can cover the inside of the pilot tube, restricting the gas’s pathway or causing a complete blockage. It may also spring a leak, allowing the gas to escape and never contact the pilot light. A professional HVAC technician should inspect this component to ensure you can safely use your boiler. 

#3 Filthy Boiler Furnace

When you inspect your pilot light, you should see a steady, azure flame. If you see a weak yellow flame instead, you need to have the entire furnace area cleaned by a professional. Soot builds up over time, blocking important connections within the boiler network that ensure proper operations.  

#4 Drafts 

“Why won’t my boiler pilot light come on?” you ask.

Sometimes, the answer is as simple as a breeze blowing out the flame. If you can detect nothing else wrong with your furnace, try to find the draft’s source. Eliminate the draft with insulation or caulk to protect the flame. 

#5 Buildup in the Heat Exchanger

Tap water contains minerals like sodium, magnesium, and calcium. The mineral levels depend on the municipality in which you live. As the water in the boiler heats, the minerals separate from the water and solidify as it cools.

This process causes kettling in the heat exchanger. The separated minerals will cling to the surfaces of any mechanisms they touch. The buildup blocks the heat exchanger, causing the entire system to shut down and prevent dangerous levels of water pressure. 

How To Keep Your Pilot Light Ignited

So how can you prevent the above issues from occurring in your boiler? Schedule periodic maintenance and cleaning services from a professional. Not only do these services keep you comfortable, but they can also save you money and improve your household’s energy efficiency.

Most of these problems, besides unexpected drafts, occur because of debris blocking or covering integral boiler components. During a maintenance call, a technician will inspect and clean each of these parts. Maintenance services can also prevent other costly repairs in the future. 

Why Won’t Your Boiler Pilot Light Come On? Complete Comfort Control Can Find Answers! 

If you’re asking, “Why won’t my boiler pilot light come on?” contact us. Our technicians at Complete Comfort Control quickly scope out and resolve the problem. Boilers are technical appliances that often require professional services. Let us find a solution and bring comfort back under your control.

Avoid costly repairs and increasing energy bills with Complete Comfort Control’s heating maintenance services. Call us at 631-910-6702 to schedule an appointment.

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