Quick Answer: How To Replace A Hot Water Heater Thermocouple?

Can I replace a thermocouple myself?

It’s easy to replace and a new one costs $5 to $10. Rather than trying to unfasten the thermocouple inside the water heater’s burning chamber, it’s easier to remove the whole burner and thermocouple assembly. Then unfasten the three nuts that hold the thermocouple and the two gas tubes to the valve.

Do you have to drain the water heater to change the thermocouple?

Removing and replacing a gas valve requires you to completely drain the water heater, turn off the gas control valve, turn off the gas and water supply. But that’s just the first step.

How do I know if my thermocouple is bad on my water heater?

If the pilot lights but the flame goes out as soon as you release the button after holding it for 60 seconds, then the thermocouple is bad. It’s possible to replace the thermocouple without removing the burner assembly, and many repair people do this.

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How much should a plumber charge to replace a thermocouple?

Thermocouple Replacement Cost Calling a professional plumber to install a new thermocouple should only be up to $150. If you do the work yourself, you will only pay the price of the part which is about $20.

What causes a thermocouple to go bad?

Changes in temperature can cause regular expansion and contraction in metal, which will cause thermocouples to weaken over time. After enough time, metal fatigue can cause a thermocouple to break. If thermocouples start to give out unusual readings, it may be suffering from metal fatigue.

Can you clean a thermocouple?

The best way to clean your thermocouple is to use either a piece of steel wool or the coarse side of a sponge to gently clean off any soot or other remnants. You can use a pencil eraser to clean between the threads of the screw that connects the thermocouple to the control valve of your system.

Are hot water heater thermocouples universal?

Universal Thermocouples. Universal thermocouples, as the name implies work on most water heaters. They are available online and in home supply stores for a reasonable cost. The length and the thread type are the two concerns when purchasing one.

How long does a thermocouple last on a water heater?

All things considered, the question remains, “How long should my thermocouple last?” The answer to that question is that it depends on the application. In an ideal environment, that length of time can be indefinite.

What are the symptoms of a bad thermocouple?

Failed Thermocouple Symptoms

  • Signs of contamination on the tube, e.g. discoloration, cracks, or pinholes.
  • Signs of wear or corrosion of the wirings, e.g. missing insulation or bare wire.
  • Physical damage to the connectors which can have an effect on the reliability of the test reading.
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Will a pilot light stay lit with a bad thermocouple?

A thermocouple senses the heat of the pilot and allows gas to flow to the burner. A bad thermocouple will shut off gas to both the pilot and the burner so the pilot light won’t stay lit.

How do I know if I need a new thermocouple?

If you can’t get the flame to light at all, and you’re sure the gas is on, there’s probably an obstruction in the pilot tube. If the flame lights and goes out when you release the gas control knob after holding it in for the recommended 20 to 30 seconds, that’s the sign of a thermocouple malfunction.

What’s the difference between a thermopile and a thermocouple?

The main difference between Thermocouple and Thermopile is their method of measurement. The thermocouple is a thermoelectric instrument, while the thermopile is an instrument that modifies thermal energy into electrical output.

How do you test a thermocouple?

Select the ohms or resistance option on your multimeter. Place one test lead on the side of the thermocouple and the other to the end that screws into the gas valve. If the thermocouple has proper continuity, a small resistance reading should be visible on the multimeter.

Why does the pilot keep going out?

If the pilot light goes out, the thermocouple senses the drop in temperature and signals for the gas valve to close. If you have a faulty thermocouple is the most common reason that your pilot light is malfunctioning. Over time your water heater will collect dirt, dust and other kinds of debris.

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