Rachel Hirshorn: Do you have a gas hot water heater or a gas furnace? If so, there's a good chance you'll have to relight its pilot light at some point. I'm Rachel Hirshorn for Repair.
com with some tips on how to relight a pilot light safely.
First, turn off your appliance so it's not trying to heat while you work on it. You can do this by turning down the thermostat until it's on its lowest setting or the PILOT or VACATION setting.
Next, find the knob that controls the gas on your appliance's pilot control assembly. It may be next to a red RESET button if you have one. Turn the gas control knob to OFF to prevent gas from leaking out. Wait about 3 minutes for all the gas to dissipate.
Now, turn the same gas control knob from OFF to PILOT. You can usually find the pilot inside the appliance. If you're working on your hot water heater, you'll need to open the cover below the control assembly to reach the pilot. On a furnace, the pilot light is typically behind the front cover. If it's too dark to see, put that flashlight to use.
If your appliance has an electronic igniter button, usually red and near the pilot, you'll use that to relight the pilot. Otherwise, you'll need a match or a lighter. To light the pilot with a flame, place a lighted match or lighter at the pilot opening where the metal gas supply tube ends, that's where the pilot flame will burn.
Next, press and hold the gas control knob that's still set to PILOT. It should push in just like a button. Or if you see a red RESET button near the knob, press and hold that instead. Keep pressing and holding the control knob or RESET button for 30 seconds to make sure the flame lights and stays lit.
To light an appliance with an electronic igniter, push and hold down the control knob while it's still set to PILOT and then push the red electronic igniter button to create a spark and light the flame.
Once your pilot light is lit and staying lit, you can release all buttons, turn the gas control knob to ON and crank that thermostat back up to a comfortable temperature.
For more helpful tips and advice for maintaining your home, visit us at Repair.