Tips to Safely Relight Your Furnace

Relighting Furnace in Peoria, IL

If the pilot light on the furnace in your Peoria home goes out, your heating system won’t start. Knowing how to safely relight it is incredibly empowering. With the tips below, you can troubleshoot this common home issue on your own.

What Is a Pilot Light?

The pilot light in your furnace is the component that ignites the burners. This is what gets the heating process started after the unit has been turned on at the thermostat. Pilot lights were once standard in all gas-fired furnaces for quite some time. However, many new furnace models don’t have a pilot light ignition system. Instead, these more advanced designs have ignition systems that are entirely electronic.

Find Your Owner’s Manual

Before attempting to troubleshoot any issue your home furnace is experiencing, take some time to read through your owner’s manual. If you’re unsure of the type of ignition system your heater has, this guide will tell you. If your furnace has a pilot light, it will also show you exactly where this component is located, how to access it, and how to safely reset it. If you no longer have the owner’s manual for your furnace, search for a digital copy online.

Understanding Your Furnace’s Pilot Light

You will likely find the pilot light behind a small, marked door near the base of the furnace. At the inside of this housing will be a small, round button with three settings: On, Off, and Pilot. This round button can be depressed and then dialed to each of the three settings as needed. This is the pilot light’s reset switch.

Resetting and Lighting the Pilot Light

Always start by turning off your furnace at the thermostat. Then, turn the pilot light’s reset switch to the “Off” position, as this will stop the flow of gas. You will need to give the gas ample time to dissipate before attempting to light the pilot. Wait for one to two minutes before taking any other actions.

Next, dial the reset switch to “Pilot.” This will restore the flow of gas to the pilot. Keep the reset button depressed while using a match or lighter to light the pilot. Hold the reset button in its depressed position until the flame holds. Once it does, release the reset button, close the chamber, and try starting your heater up again.

What to Do if Your Pilot Light Won’t Stay Lit

If your pilot does not stay lit after your first attempt, start the process over again. However, after you have made two separate attempts with no success, return the reset switch to the “Off” position and shut the access door. Then, call a licensed HVAC professional. There may be other problems preventing your furnace from igniting.

No HVAC repair project is too big or too small for Fritch Heating & Cooling, Inc.. We’ve been offering reliable heating and cooling services throughout the greater Peoria, IL, area for more than 70 years. We also provide a variety of innovative indoor air quality services and maintain an expansive catalog of boilers, heaters, humidifiers, and more. Call us today to get help with your pilot light or to schedule an appointment for routine furnace maintenance.