How To Reset the Pilot Light on a Water Heater

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Locate the hot water heater in your house. Look in the laundry room, garage and attic. If you cannot find it, contact the builder of your house for the exact location. Clear your water heater of any obstructions like Christmas presents, storage boxes or other items.

Turn on the hot water faucet in your bathroom sink. Allow the water to run for at least five minutes. Feel the water to determine if it is cold or hot. If the water is still cold, you need to check the water heater’s pilot light. The pilot light heats the water which services your house.

Once you locate the water heater, turn the water temperature dial to the lowest setting. This should be clearly marked on the unit. Wait for ten minutes and then smell for gas. If you smell gas, please call your local gas company imediately. If you do not smell gas, you can proceed with the next step.

Look for the gas release valve and the igniter switch. Usually the gas release valve is a big button. The igniter switch will have a symbol of a match or lighter. Press the gas release valve and you will hear a hissing noise — that’s the gas. Now press the lighter switch until a blue flame appears. Hold the gas for at least one minute and then let it go. If the flame disappears, try it again. If you try it three times with no success, your water heater may need service.

(Always know how long the service warranty will last for your appliances to avoid paying for repairs.)


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