Feb 1, 2023 | Fairfield-Hamilton, Burner, Burner Cover, Flame, Furnace, Lighter, Ohio, Pilot, Pilot Light, Relight, Reset

Suppose your furnace’s pilot light has suddenly gone out. Now you are stuck with a chilly home and a furnace that is only blowing cool air. Despite it being an unwelcome issue, an extinguished pilot light is a rather normal occurrence in the HVAC industry. But how did it happen? Well, first off, sometimes, a draft is the main culprit behind a blown-out pilot light. There are also a few various other system-related reasons behind a malfunctioning pilot light. But whatever the case, here you are – stuck with an unlit pilot light, and now you need to know how to relight your pilot light. Luckily, that’s what your Fairfield-Hamilton Heating & Cooling service experts are here for! So, join us today as we guide you through each step of relighting your furnace’s pilot light.   


Relighting a pilot light may sound complicated, but it’s not. It’s an easy process that involves a few steps. The main thing to remember is always proceed with caution.  

Step One:   

A good thing to keep in mind is that usually, furnaces come with instructions on how to relight your specific model’s pilot light. Generally, these directions are placed on the side of the unit. These instructions are from the manufacturer and are made for your specific type of furnace. So, if they are available to you, please refer to these instructions first. However, there are some situations where they may be hard to locate based on the furnace’s position or due to a lack of lighting in the vicinity. If this is the case for you, then you should proceed with the steps below.   

In addition, it’s also important to note that before you start the relighting process, you will need to have a long lighter (or matchstick) on hand that is sufficient in length to reach the opening of the pilot light.  

Step Two:   

Your furnace may or may not have a burner cover that needs to be removed in order to obtain access to the pilot area. The burner cover is a metal faceplate that protects and covers the area surrounding the pilot light. So, perform a quick check of your furnace first and if this applies to you, carefully remove the burner cover and set it to the side for the time being. 

Step Three: 

Whenever dealing with gas-powered equipment, always shut off the gas supply first. This is for safety reasons, of course. The gas valve should be positioned close by. 

Step Four: 

Now scan the base of your unit for the furnace’s power switch. Usually, the power switch is located at the base of the heating unit; when you find it, turn it off accordingly. 

Step Five:  

Now that you have turned the furnace and the gas supply off, it’s crucial to wait for a minimum of five minutes before continuing on to the next step. Doing this is vital as it allows the gas sufficient time to dissipate. Therefore, you must not skip this step. Not waiting for the gas to disperse could result in a fire hazard, placing you and your home in danger. While you wait during this time, look for where the pilot light assembly is. This consists of a rotating knob-like button and is normally in the general area of the pilot light. It should have some wording on it that may say something similar to “pilot, reset, and on/off.” Wording tends to vary based on the furnace model and manufacturer. 

Step Six:   

After the gas has dissipated as it should, the next thing to do is turn the “pilot” setting on the knob on. After the “pilot” switch has been initiated, press and hold down the “reset” switch at the same time. While keeping this switch pressed, ignite your lighter and bring it near the pilot light’s opening with your other hand. When you are close enough, the pilot light should ignite itself and the flame should remain lit. At this point, you can release the “reset” switch.  

Step Seven: After you have verified the pilot light is functioning and staying ablaze, go ahead and turn the gas supply back on. 

Step Eight: Don’t forget to put the burner cover back on if you had to take it off! 

There you have it – congratulations! Knowing how to relight your furnace is a fantastic skill we think every homeowner would benefit from. So, even if you do not need to relight your pilot light currently, keep these tips in the back of your mind, saving them for a rainy day. A few additional things to bear in mind are that if the pilot doesn’t stay lit after relighting it, this is a good signal that it is time to give Fairfield-Hamilton Heating & Cooling a call. It’s possible there is a component-related problem that needs to be looked at. We will come to your home to assess and diagnose the issue.   

Call Fairfield-Hamilton Heating & Cooling today at (513) 540-1716, or schedule an appointment online now by clicking here!  


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