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Rick, HVAC Supervisor
Category: HVAC
Satisfied Customers: 21780
Experience:  40+ yrs. experience as a licensed oil & gas technician.
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My hot water heater tries to light but wont stay on, the pilot

Customer Question

My hot water heater tries to light but wont stay on, the pilot light is on , but the burner wont stay lit
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: HVAC
Expert:  Rick replied 2 years ago.
What is the brand and model of the heater?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
General electric gg40t6pf00
mfg date 5/2005
Expert:  Rick replied 2 years ago.
What is the LED flash sequence on the gas valve when it doesn't stay lit? what is the pattern before it repeats?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
It does the 2 flashes,( max ignition attempts)
Expert:  Rick replied 2 years ago.
Ok, chances are the pilot electrode is oxidized and isn't sensing the flame. You can try cleaning the electrode off with fine aluminum oxide sandpaper but be careful not to move it out of position. Also check the electrical connections to/from the pilot electrode. If that doesn't work then the next step would be to replace the pilot assembly, then the gas valve if that doesn't work. But given the age of this unit replacing expensive parts is probably not a good idea since the tank could leak at any time.
Expert:  Rick replied 2 years ago.
I have to step away for a while. I'll respond to any follow ups when I get back but there's not a lot to add to my last answer. If you don't have any more questions I'd appreciate a favorable rating.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I was able to get in there and wipe it off a little bit and it started up, is there an easy way to get it out so i can actually clean it well?
Expert:  Rick replied 2 years ago.
No "easy way". You have to disconnect the tubing from the gas valve and pull the burner assembly out.