Readers ask: How To Clean A Thermocouple Water Heater?

How do 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.

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.

Do thermocouples need cleaning?

If the Thermocouple is faulty it will cause the unit to shut down. How to clean? Remove Thermocouple from pilot assembly, using steel wool or emery cloth to lightly clean the tip removing any soot or build up that might have accorded due to an improper pilot flame.

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How long do thermocouples last?

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.

How do you check if a thermocouple is working?

If the thermocouple is working, you should be able to measure 30 to 40 millivolts of voltage at the connection end of the tube when the pilot flame is on. You can test this yourself using a multimeter, but you may need a helper to keep the pilot flame burning while you do it.

Can you replace a thermocouple yourself?

The No. 1 cause of pilot lights that won’t stay lit is a worn-out thermocouple. It’s easy to replace and a new one costs $5 to $10. Then unfasten the three nuts that hold the thermocouple and the two gas tubes to the valve.

Why do thermocouples 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.

How do you fix a pilot light that keeps going out?

What do I do if my pilot light keeps going out?

  1. Find the gas shut-off knob and turn to the “Off” setting.
  2. Remove the access panel to access the burner.
  3. Turn the knob to “Pilot” to start the flow of gas.
  4. While still holding the gas knob, light the pilot with a long lighter.
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Can thermocouple be too long?

The length of a thermocouple has no effect on its measurement accuracy or its ability to transfer the signal to the instrument. In other words, thermocouples do not experience “voltage drops” or power loss along its length as a high current power line might possess.

Can you bypass a thermocouple on a water heater?

Realistically, you have just disabled the thermocouple, but you can also reach in and unclip it from its holding bracket where it meets the pilot light. In most cases it will be held on with a gravity clip, but some are held on with a screw that must be removed with a small screwdriver.

Why does my hot water tank keep going out?

Dirty thermocouple: If you can light your pilot light, but the water heater pilot keeps going out, there are many possible causes. One of them is a dirty thermocouple. Bent thermocouple: Sometimes, when your gas water heater won’t stay lit, if you check the thermocouple, you may see that it has been bent.

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