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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Posts
    5

    Frown

    I have a Hunter gas direct vent fireplace which worked fine when I shut off the pilot at the end of last spring. I tried to fire it up tonight but when I I turned the rotary knob from "off" to "pilot" and pressed the ignitor, nothing happened. I didn't hear the hiss of gas I seem to remember the fireplace makes when the gas valve is turned on. The fireplace gas shutoff is "on". The ignitor should be fine, it was replaced last year.

    Anything I can try before I call the service guys?

    thanks in advance

    Marc.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Location
    Pacific Coast of Canada
    Posts
    4,008

    Got your manual?

    Take the glass off and remove the logs.
    Visually check for spark, it can short out fairly easily.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    S.E. Pa
    Posts
    6,180
    I didn't see where you said you held the knob in at pilot. As Collin said, review the manual or call the mfrs. Tech Services to walk you through it.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Posts
    248
    Also, check for spiders. I was told by my HVAC contractor to leave the pilot light on in the summer. I had turned it off in the spring and a small (very small) spider got into the gas orifice and spun small webs all over the place. The result was that I could start the pilot light, but the main burner would not come on because the orifice was plugged!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Minnesota
    Posts
    148
    Why is it that you find it nesesary to turn the pilot off during the summer months. The benifits way out way the cost of the fuel that the pilot would use up in that period of time.

    1. keeping the firebox dry and somewhat rust free.

    2. You have better luck keeping insects out of the fire box, they com down through the venting. Spiders are a real problem, because they like to build a nest inside the main or pilot orfices. Then you have to call a sevice tech to come out and clean the orfices. The service call was probably more than the gas to run the pilot all summer.

    3. As the fireplace get older the pilot ignitor doesn't seem to work as it did when it was new. And so it doesn't lite as very well either.

    So in closing I recomend to all my customers to never shut the pilot off. As years go on it's 50/50 weather you will get it started with out a sevice tech's help.
    Just food for thought.

    Helgy
    Helgy

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Posts
    1,383
    The most common reason a pilot wont light after being off for several weeks is "stale" gas.

    For some reason, which no one has ever been able to explain to me, if gas sits in a fuel line for a few weeks or longer, it wont light. You can hold a match to the pilot burner and SEE the flame being moved around by the gas from the pilot burner, but it wont light until that stale gas is purged out.


    The easiest way to do that is to simply set the control knob to pilot, and hold it in for five minutes, which causes the stale gas to be purged out through the pilot burner. Then wait five minutes for the accumulated gas to purge out of the burner area, and hit the striker one or more times to light the pilot.

    If that doesn't work, repeat that procedure an additional time. If it still doesn't work, it's something else.

    I make a couple of thousand dollars every fall doing this for people.



    Seattle Pioneer

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    2,458
    [QUOTE]Originally posted by SeattlePioneer
    [B]The most common reason a pilot wont light after being off for several weeks is "stale" gas.

    For some reason, which no one has ever been able to explain to me, if gas sits in a fuel line for a few weeks or longer, it wont light. You can hold a match to the pilot burner and SEE the flame being moved around by the gas from the pilot burner, but it wont light until that stale gas is purged out.


    I've also given this some thought over the years and I have come to think it may be due to nat gas being lighter it leaves the pilot tube via the pilot and is replace with air. Whatcha think





  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    burlington county n.j.
    Posts
    9,741
    i think the stale gas is air. seems to take forever on some of these things to purge out the pilot tubing. when you think that you have held it long enough to get gas hold it a few minutes longer!!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Posts
    1,383
    Hello t527---


    The gas in the fuel line is under constant pressure, well above atmospheric pressure. Any leak would be gas escaping into the free air.

    So I am personally satisfied that it is or at least was natural gas, but I still don't know why it wont burn. Perhaps there is some chemical change that can take place in such circumstances, but that's just a guess.



    Seattle Pioneer

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Posts
    5

    got is started

    Thanks for all the replies.

    Got it started last night after taking the logset out and looking at the ignitor. When I pushed the ignitor button the spark was at the base of the ignitor and not at the tip. I jiggled things around a bit and managed to get the spark at the tip of the ignitor, put the logs back in, replaced the glass and after a few attempts managed to light the pilot.

    Thanks again.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Posts
    1,383
    Direct vent fireplaces are usually sealed up behind glass and you usually can't hear the gas coming from the pilot burner.

    My suggestions---

    1) make sure any gas valves are turned on, including in wall or floor valves.

    2) purge the gas out of your fuel line by holding the gas valve button down for five minutes. Then wait another five minutes to give the gas a chance to purge out.

    3) then try igniting the pilot.



    Seattle Pioneer

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Posts
    1,383

    Electrode Spark Not Jumping Properly

    <<Got it started last night after taking the logset out and looking at the ignitor. When I pushed the ignitor button the spark was at the base of the ignitor and not at the tip. I jiggled things around a bit and managed to get the spark at the tip of the ignitor, put the logs back in, replaced the glass and after a few attempts managed to light the pilot.
    >>


    I find this situation to be quite common on a lot of gas fireplaces. Robert Shaw pilot burners seem to do this quite commonly.


    A little judicious bending can improve this, but can also break off the electrode. It's also fairly common not to have enough room to bend the electrode in a better position, and often enough the bending doesn't solve the problem.

    So what do you do when you find this condition?




    Seattle Pioneer





  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Posts
    190
    Get a match.

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