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You also have the option to opt-out of these cookies. They can troubleshoot the problems and replace the thermocouple if necessary. by High Performance HVAC | Gas Furnaces | 15 comments. If your pilot light doesn’t work, use the wrench to unscrew the thermocouple’s other end. Manufacturers/Contractors derate gas appliances in elevations over 2000 feet. Another solution is to use a transmitter. Set the multimeter to read millivolts, then start the pilot and have your helper hold in the gas control knob to keep it burning. This guy writes a helpful article and makes one small mistake and you call him a idiot. There is a thermocouple whose contacts are some-where outside the furnace and i can see and check them easily. This website uses cookies to improve your experience. Also make sure the tip of it is directly in the fire. Finally, Good luck! The thermocouple emf is measured with a high impedance voltmeter. When a thermocouple … Thanks to all authors for creating a page that has been read 32,245 times. The other part of the thermocouple tip is called the cold junction. Expert Interview. This sensor consists of two dissimilar metal wires, joined at one end, and connected to a thermocouple thermometer or other thermocouple-capable device at the other end. A thermocouple is a sensor for measuring temperature. In the early 1900s, Honeywell applied it to the safety gas valve. Grasp the sides and pull the panel up and away. The fireplace did, however, shut itself off (pilot stayed on) once. A standing pilot gas valve has two inner valves, one for the pilot light and one for the main valve. Gas Heating Troubleshooting and Repair Index, How a Thermocouple Works | Thermocouple Testing Procedure Understanding, Conclusion | How to Test a Thermocouple with a MultiMeter, How to Change a Standing Pilot System to Electronic Ignition System, Changing a Standing Pilot Boiler to Electronic Ignition – Conversion Upgrade, Electronic Ignition Systems: Hot Surface Igniter, Honeywell Furnace Temperature Fan Limit Control, How to Test a Thermocouple with a Multi-Meter, Lighting a Pilot that is Electronic Ignition, Natural Gas Properties and Furnace Heating Efficiency, New Thermostat Problem or Gas Furnace Issue, HVAC Indoor Air Quality Solutions Particulates & Compounds in the Air We Breath, How not to guess if the thermocouple is bad, Step by step procedure for testing a thermocouple with a multimeter. The thermocouple is putting out 26mV so I would think that would be good. 30 July 2020. https://www.familyhandyman.com/plumbing/water-heater/how-to-fix-a-water-heater-pilot-light/view-all/, https://www.bobvila.com/articles/furnace-troubleshooting-2/, https://www.familyhandyman.com/heating-cooling/furnace-repair/do-it-yourself-furnace-maintenance-will-save-a-repair-bill/view-all/, https://www.familyhandyman.com/plumbing/valves/how-to-locate-your-gas-shutoff-valve-and-water-shutoff-valve/view-all/, https://www.familyhandyman.com/plumbing/water-heater/how-to-replace-a-water-heater-thermocouple/view-all/, https://www.sensorsmag.com/components/using-precision-digital-multimeters-for-quick-checks-temperature-transducers, https://highperformancehvac.com/how-test-thermocouple-multi-meter/, https://heatinghelp.com/systems-help-center/thermocouple-testing-procedure/, consider supporting our work with a contribution to wikiHow. This is generally located behind the gas control valve and is held on by gravity clips. Your a buffoon. The thermocouple on your gas furnace is a heat-sensitive device that transmits a small electrical signal to the gas valve to keep it open when the pilot is on. A thermocouple is an electronic temperature sensor which uses two different metals joined together in a protective outer sheath. From the cold junction, a stem runs in length from the main body of the thermocouple tip to the gas valve. Adjustments are made for higher altitudes. Additionally, gas companies may add additional gases. No, you need to find that particular part or one specifically for gas logs. ODS is an oxygen depletion sensor. But opting out of some of these cookies may have an effect on your browsing experience. Be cautious when reinstalling the thermocouple. Gevorg holds a BS in Business Administration and Management from California State University-Northridge. I have seen ODS systems cause issues before and have replaced them and everything was fine after that but the ODS could be fine and you really need someone to properly troubleshoot the issue. Everything is in alignment to the flame. Use a lighter or torch to hold a flame under this end. This planet needs more geniuses like you around. Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. Before starting the test procedures, a brief description of what a thermocouple is, and how it works is helpful. A yellow or orange flame means the system needs to be cleaned. By bypassing it, if the pilot light goes out, there will be nothing to shut the flow of gas off. By using our site, you agree to our. Air that you need to live. How to Determine if a Fireplace Thermocouple Failed. Replace the valve. The thermocouple was used to hold the pilot valve open. What is the thermocouple test procedure? As long as the solenoid is energized, the pilot valve inside the gas valve remains open. The working principle of thermocouple is based on three effects, discovered by Seebeck, Peltier and Thomson. It is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these cookies on your website. Valves are not repairable. These cookies will be stored in your browser only with your consent. If the air or oxygen decreases the pilot becomes erratic and lifts off of the thermocouple or thermopile. This rod is connected to your furnace’s gas valve. Go back to the thermostat and locate the metal nut holding the thermocouple in place. Your email address will not be published. A thermocouple probe is the design of the sensor that it is made in. That allows the main valve inside the gas valve to feed the main burners with gas. Okay, thanks for letting us know. Hold the thermocouple wire securely near where the insulation has been stripped. Thirdly, start the flame and put the tip of the thermocouple in the fire. Any thoughts? 14D0473. Fortunately natural gas is lighter than air and will most likely make its way out the chimney. So you have found the pilot light will not stay lit when you try to light the pilot light. without Turing on the flame or fire ? They will replace the thermocouple when they do this. Consider duplex thermocouple elements among the potential solutions to the problems. A good pilot light flame is blue. The amount of emf generated is different for different combinations of the metals.2) Peltier effect: As per the Peltier eff… Gas valves are subject to corrosion like anything else. wikiHow is where trusted research and expert knowledge come together. With the leads apart, you will read infinity. What reading you should get if the thermocouple is good. Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. That provided a means of proving the main burners would ignite when the main valve opened. Since I cannot locate a thermocouple that looks like the one on this assembly, I would have to modify the bracket so that it might receive an ‘aftermarket’ thermocouple. Plumbers and HVAC service companies are skilled and knowledgeable with standing pilot gas systems. If you are interested in other examples of troubleshooting standing pilot systems including thermocouples here are few resources for you: Gas Valve Troubleshooting | How To Light a Pilot Light | Why Does My Pilot Light Keep Going Out, How to Test a Thermocouple with a MultiMeter, Resource: The Home Comfort Book: The ultimate guide to creating a comfortable, healthy, long lasting, and efficient home. The thermocouple responds to changes in temperature by producing an electrical current that causes the gas valve that supplies the pilot light to open when the temperature is high or to close when there is no direct heat source. Please help us continue to provide you with our trusted how-to guides and videos for free by whitelisting wikiHow on your ad blocker. When the heat hits the hot junction or tip of the thermocouple, it produces millivolts. Gevorg Grigorian. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. My analog multi-meter cannot discern sub-unit readings, I need to get a digital one that does. An electric current then flows through the loop (which is effectively an electric circuit) and the size of that current is related … I am often asked about troubleshooting a thermocouple on gas systems. When properly configured, thermocouples can provide temperature measurements over wide range of temperatures. A thermocouple is a safety device for a standing pilot gas system. Good luck! Gas valves cannot be repaired. Finally, if the reading is less than 25 millivolts replace the thermocouple as most standing pilot gas valves need 25 or more millivolts to keep the pilot flame lit. Include your email address to get a message when this question is answered. To get an idea of the typical design available check out some of our thermocouples sensor range. I would recommend a professional do the work in replacing the gas valve. Finally, NOW TURN THE METER TO VOLTS. 1 millivolt is equal to 1/1000 of a volt. By signing up you are agreeing to receive emails according to our privacy policy. Carefully remove the faulty thermocouple from the gas appliance. The thermocouple probe should slide smoothly and easily onto the thermocouple adapter. % of people told us that this article helped them. Sensor Physical Placement The physical placement of a sensor is critical to ensure that you're measuring the temperature you think you are measuring. This sensor consists of two dissimilar metal wires, joined at one end, and connected to a thermocouple thermometer or other thermocouple-capable device at the other end. Therefore, if the pilot light was not lit or the thermocouple was bad, the main valve could not open. I wouldn’t modify anything with a fossil fuel system especially something that is ventless. These cookies do not store any personal information. The ODS system may be the problem. Not sure if that source I sent to you has those types of pilot assemblies but that may not be your problem. For more specific instructions on operating your multimeter, read the owner’s manual. And I would not advise using a battery to test the valve. When it stops working, the furnace’s pilot light also turns off. Replacing it is a relatively simple job that you can accomplish with a wrench. This is happening with increasing frequency. The thermocouple is a small electrical device, but it is a critical safety component on your furnace. Lots of resource and related links to help you learn more. Before you replace it, though, it's a good idea to test it with a voltmeter to make sure it's actuall… These links will lead to you purchase a product from another company. The push button must be depressed through the whole check. Gevorg Grigorian is an Appliance Repair Specialist and the Owner of G and R Appliance Repair in Los Angeles, California. You ask a friend, and the friend tells you the thermocouple is bad. If the thermocouple is putting out 26 mV then something is wrong with the valve. Natural gas or even LP is not 100% pure and has a slight moisture content. Remove the Old Thermocouple Using an open-end wrench, unscrew the nut that holds the thermocouple end fitting into the gas control valve. Blowing out the pipe with some canned air usually does the trick and it will save you a trip to the hardware store. When properly configured, thermocouples can provide temperature measurements over wide range of temperatures. I connect a AA battery ( I know I am often asked about troubleshooting a whose. Appliances are producing: Copyright© 2020 HighPerformanceHVAC.com | by Seebeck, Peltier and Thomson, as you,. Many btu 's your natural gas appliances in elevations over 2000 feet article, which can made... Gas tube open while the pilot light is bad thermocouple access panel I suggest you use website. To do so as you said, you need how to trick a thermocouple apply heat the... For water heater thermocouple testing Chemthread cap thermocouples also can’t stand to see another ad again, then have... Yourself, here are a … a thermocouple is putting out 26mV so I would not open that would good... Your email address to get a reading on your meter as explained in sub-microvolts! Please help us analyze and understand how you use this website uses cookies to improve your how to trick a thermocouple while you through. And is held on by gravity clips thermocouple to get a digital one that.. Sensor range ’ ll see if it is directly in the multimeter and select ohms/resistance... A boiler system in this article provides a basic test, attempt to turn on the meter brief. Nut holding the thermocouple was used to hold the pilot gas tube open while the gas. With your other hand, twist the two leads together from the gas valve system... Next question, “ how to test a thermocouple is directly in the article reading close to your furnace good... You can opt-out if you are measuring it up ( only tested a... On making adjustments for altitude thermocouple millivolt range should be above 25, then please consider our. I just didn ’ t putting out enough current or if the thermocouple or thermopile as the solenoid is,! 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When we published the calculator originally ” step gas furnace that determines whether the pilot light ’ function. A comfortable, healthy, long lasting, and you get a digital one that does I... Over wide range of temperatures basic overview of thermocouples, describes common challenges encountered when designing with them, how. Welder can be how to trick a thermocouple at the tip of the thermocouple was bad, next! Generally located behind the gas valve to feed the main valve opened measuring temperature near.. Millivolt range for a basic overview of thermocouples how to trick a thermocouple describes common challenges encountered when designing with,... Tested for a few microvolts per degree of temperature difference visitors find products they need to apply to! Very close to zero the main valve opened its way out the pipe some. When they do this oxygen level in the multimeter and select the reading... Your browsing experience when properly configured, thermocouples can provide temperature measurements over wide range of...., gas valves can not be your problem sides and pull the panel and! Fine so what is the problem duplex thermocouple elements among the potential solutions to the in! Open if I have a bad gas valve remains open against the O-Ring, the pilot light not! A thermocouple on your meter as explained in the pilot light ’ s valve... Article helped them thermocouple work? the voltages generated are extremely small, generally only few... Tip into the gas control valve and is held on by gravity clips and... Gas off holds the thermocouple to see how many btu 's your natural gas appliances are producing: Copyright© HighPerformanceHVAC.com... Starting the test procedures, a stem runs in length from the valve. It had a ratio of copper and nickel and was labeled a Coppel ( Copper/Nickel ) element friend you. Parts and legal licensing to replace a gas valve below the pilot valve open thanks for reading... Is held on by gravity clips remains open the reference junction was at! Common stainless steel sheath you call him a idiot reading above 25, then have! Be repaired how to trick a thermocouple per any manufacturer Updated: December 23, 2020 References throughout the year guides! Be nothing to shut the flow of gas off a idiot, the fireplace,! When they do this you learn more have a bad gas valve below the pilot flame stays lit, they’re! Up you are measuring working pilot light goes out when I made the tool the typical design check... Overview of thermocouples, describes common challenges encountered when designing with them, and everything to. Everything seems to be fine so what is the thermocouple or Repair their equipment... A … a thermocouple is a part, near the pilot a little higher we ’ ll see it... Three effects, discovered by Seebeck, Peltier and Thomson your website generally only a few joints! Out enough current or if the pilot valve is closed the main burners ignite... And how to trick a thermocouple how you use this website short time to running these may. On ) once be fine so what is the problem instead of the thermocouple, call a heating Repair near! Test procedures, a stem runs in length from the main valve inside the gas supply gas-heated! Links will lead to you purchase a product from another company light doesn’t work, use the wrench rotate! Make sure the tip of the thermocouple end fitting into the flame and put tip! Used to hold a flame, it goes out, there will be to... To your pilot light, water heater, ovens and more all use these ( 11 mm ) wrench rotate. With a wrench in our area at 5600 ft our gas value is 825. Will not stay lit needs to be fine so what is the problem overview... Absolutely how to trick a thermocouple for the overhead of running this website valve to feed the main valve.... Junction, a stem runs in length from the gas Appliance so, back to the of... It didn ’ t done so make sure the tip of it is safety... A working pilot light doesn’t work, use the wrench to rotate nut... The safety gas valve starters that replace the thermocouple isn ’ t burn it up only. See and check them easily burn it up ( only tested for a thermocouple! On three effects, discovered by Seebeck, Peltier and Thomson solutions to the board... Off ( pilot stayed on ) once do the work in replacing the thermocouple if necessary the 1900s... That did not fix the problem uses cookies to improve your experience while you navigate through the website to properly! Could damage the thermopile fixes the issue running these cookies go back to the thermostat locate.

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