What to Do When Your Gas Fireplace Won’t Light

Leave a Comment - 41



Subject: Quick fix

Thanks for the article. The 'quick fix' of compressed air (ie, blowing on the thermocouple area) worked! I also carefully vacuumed the dust from the area. (This was a case of fireplace not lighting despite pilot light being on).


Subject: Gas fireplace won't light up

The pilot light is working, but when I switch the wall switch to on the fireplace won't start, what could the problem be. I just had it serviced, getting the themro-couple replaced and it was working yesterday, went to switch it on this morning and it wouldn't ignite, the pilot light is on.

Stephanie Figy
Stephanie Figy

Subject: Hi Don,

Hi Don,

Did you try purging the air out of the pilot tubing? To do this, hold the pilot button down for about one to three minutes while the air bleeds out. If gas is coming out of the pilot, but it still won’t light, the spark igniter could be the problem. If you get through the troubleshooting you're comfortable with, you may need to find a reliable fireplace pro. I hope that helps!

gillian e kenyon

Subject: gas fireplace malfunction

I have had experts in three times. My gas fire may light but it will not stay alight.
It has no thermostat. The longest it has functioned correctly after repair is three days.


Subject: Pilot stays lit, Burner comes on, but won't with switch

We have a standing pilot system. Heat n glo fireplace. No problem with the pilot being lit. Burner automatically comes on when we turn the knob to "on" from pilot. But the wall switch will not turn on or turn off with the burner? The switch in the bottom will not turn on or off the burner either. We opened up the wall switch, and touched the wires together, but still nothing, so it's not the switch. We've cleaned the thermopile and pilot and thermocoupler as well. Help?

henry irvin

Subject: I have a gas fireplace with a

I have a gas fireplace with a wall switch. I relit the pilot light after over 10 years of it being off. The pilot lights and stays lit. We put in a new thermo pile and light switch, but it still won't light up the whole bar. We tried sucking out debris from the bar. We left the pilot lit for a long time to see if it would ever come on. It still won't turn on. Any suggestions?


Subject: Flame and pilot going out

I recently changed the whole assembly with the thermocouple and igniter. My pilot Turns on and stays lit. The flame is slow to ignite the whole burner. Probably 20 seconds. However after about 5 minutes the flame and pilot go out. Any suggestions?


Subject: Old gas fireplace, no workie

Gas FP in a condo which was built in the '70s. Fireplace hasn't been used for several years and won't light. It's controlled by a wall switch. However, hitting the switch does not cause the gas to flow, I suspect the pilot is long dead and the gas flow is therefore not triggered by the switch. When I turn the switch on the burner unit itself to "pilot" and push it in, I hear gas moving through the unit, but apparently the pilot doesn't come on. I'm told that the burner unit is antiquated, and no longer available. One idiot (a fireplace specialist, mind you) quoted me $9,500 to fix it; told him to blow it out his ear (or another orifice). Any ideas on how to fix it myself (I have already found that the wall switch has juice, and there's obviously gas to the burner unit) or any recommendations of somewhere I can take the unit for repair in the West Los Angeles area? The pan is rectangular and is 27.75 x 10.75" in size, and I can not find anything remotely similar in a replacement setup. Thanks!

Frances Gordon

Subject: Propane fireplace

My problem is that the fire won't stay lit! I remote turn it on and after about 40 seconds it goes off. Then with the remote I flick back lower than the room temp. and the fire ignites again but won't stay on. The propane tank is full!
What is the problem?


Subject: pilot light

fireplace was working ok, till we had to switch propane tanks. Removed air from and we used it. when we turned back on the flames gradually went out and pilot wont light.


Subject: Burner is staying lit

The flame is staying lit continuously even when the thermostat is dropped below the set temp. It's like the thermostat doesn't have any control over the burner at all and its a newer thermostat. If I move knob back to "pilot" the flame goes off and the pilot stays lit. Not sure what to do?

Bob C

Subject: Pilot not lighting

Fireplace working ok....then power went out last night. Cold weather. Can't restart pilot this morning. Will try some of suggestions posted.

Arshad Rehman

Subject: Remote ignition system

On my gas fire place the remote doesn't work. I can manually turn the fire place on however it doesn't work with the remote control.
I suspect that the remote signal receiver that sits inside the fire place is not working. Where can I buy another one or have it checked out?
My zip code is 45069.


Subject: Fire place remote

It's not working. Receiving a flashing red light. I changed the battery in the remote and it didn't have any effect.


Subject: stove won't light

We have used our Blaze King gas fireplace insert for over 15 years with no problems. We have it wired to a thermostat and during the night the stove went off and now will not light. I have checked all the wires and nothing appears to be broken or disconnected. Do I need to unwire the thermostat and try to light it manually? Could the gas control valve be bad?


Subject: The pilot light doesn't spark.

We've had our propane fireplace for approx 10 years now and this is the first year we've had problems with it. Most of the time it doesn't even spark when pushing the ignite button. We've had to light it with a bbq grill lighter and then the pilot light won't stay on for very long before going out.
Thank you for your time.


Subject: Gas Fireplace not lighting

I live in So. CA so I do not use the gas-log fireplace very often. Last year, the pilot had difficulty lighting, but eventually would. This year, when I turn the wall switch on, I do not even hear - or smell - the gas coming on or through at all. Quite honestly, I do not even know where the pilot is located even if I wanted to try the purge idea. And "playing" around with gas does not like something I am eager to do. The house is about 10-11 years old. any suggestions? I have thought about calling the gas company out. Thanks


Subject: Fixed

I was so relieved to finally light my fireplace
By following advise. I held the pilot switch open for a min and voila it lit. I guess i flushed air out. Thank you


Subject: fireplace lighting problems

we have had our gas fireplace for over 11 years. I have vacuumed out the bottom and clean the glass and area every year with no problems till 3 years ago. I light the pilot 1 month before I need to use it. When I flip the switch for the past 3 years the flame may not come on for about 20mins or may come on then off after a few mins then back and forth a few times. I am getting concerned as I may be missing a cleaning step. What should I look for.


Subject: NG fire place

I have tested thermopile and it is good I've tested & replaced thermo coupler ,,,pilot light will light but when i turn to on for place to light burner pilot goes out tried many times same thing

Nicole S.

Subject: Fireplace only partially lights

The burner for my gas fireplace is only partially lighting. It gets to a certain point on the track and then won't light any further than that. Any suggestions?


Subject: Fp partially lights

Our fireplace does the same thing. It has done t his g or years also and when I asked the technician on the initial light, he felt it was due to air and not having used in some time. We normally turn it off and back on and it will light in full. It now won't light past the 5 inches to the left of the pilot. Need some suggestions please on possible true cause and fix.

Peter Ernst

Subject: fireplace

My natural gas fireplace lites just fine. The pilot lite is always on year around. Problem is now and then the fireplace wont lite. I turn the thermostat up and nothing happens. I pull the plug for the fan and then it started. So not a clue


Subject: great advice

Thanks for the great advice. No one else online said anything about purging the air out of the pilot tubing. Once I did that my pilot light came right on. Thanks again.

View Comments - 41 Hide Comments

Post New Comment

Offers <
Popular <
Answers <



He hasn't legally abandoned the job as long as he is still showing up and doing something, even if it is very little, from time to time.  You'll have to fire him first.  Have documentation that the job is not being done in a timely manner, showing when he has and has not worked.  Be ready for a fight and probably a legal battle since he will likely still want more money or won't refund money paid for incomplete work.


Change the locks and inform the contractor their services on your property are terminated.  Tell him if anyone representing his company enters your property they will be considered trespassing and will be prosecuted.  Then hire another company to check the work he has done to make sure it is right.  Somehow I doubt it is given the nature of his work ethic.  Then have the new contractor repair any bad workmanship and finish the job.  Keep records as any documented things that have to be redone will help your case against the first contractor.


Todd Shell

Todd's Home Services

San Antonio, TX

I would recommend finding a good hearth retailer in your area and work with them to select a stove that is right for your home. They should also be able to arrange for certified installer to handle the installation. Keep in mind many areas require a city or county permit for the installation, and it may be wise to have the chimney and fireplace inspected by a certified chimney sweep beforehand.