You may not know about thermocouples, but these small components are vital to the safe operation of your gas-fired appliance. A thermocouple is where two dissimilar metals are joined together on one end. This combination of metals produces a very small voltage that corresponds to the sensed temperature.
The thermocouple is located in the appliance’s pilot light and is always hot. However, if the pilot light goes out, the thermocouple stops producing electricity prevents the gas valve from opening. This means no heat or hot water.
There are a few things that can alter the functioning of a thermocouple. The pilot light can be blown out by drafts coming from high winds through the gas vent. Checking to see that your venting system is intact and that your pilot light is lit after a big storm will increase the life of your thermocouple.
Keeping the gas supply turned on to your appliance can also ensure proper functioning. If the gas is turned off it can cause corrosion build-up which will decrease the electricity output. Having your thermocouple inspected regularly will also prevent dirt and build up.
Quigley can help you identify your thermocouple and let you know if it needs cleaning. They can also help you with any of HVAC needs in preparation for winter.