by Joe Drane
Wondering what to do about firing up your gas fireplace for winter? The recent cold weather (it was 37 deg F at 6AM on Oct 24) makes us all start thinking about how good that fireplace will feel. But if you turned off the pilot to save gas over the summer, it's time to re-light it. You can call the gas company, and for a small fee ($25 last year) they'll come out and light it. Or you can do it yourself... even without a match. And here's how:
1. Make sure the wall electric switch to your gas log fireplace is switched off.
2. Open the black, front grate below the fireplace glass by pushing in on it and allowing the catch to release. It should swing down, revealing the "guts" of your fireplace controls.
3. Turn the gas on by making sure the red knob valve is turned to a position parallel with the gas line (aligns it with the flow of the pipe).
4. Push in the black, gas control knob and turn clockwise to the "OFF" position. Wait a couple of minutes.
5. Now, push in the black, gas control knob COUNTERclockwise to the "PILOT" position.
6. Push in and hold the black, gas control knob and simultaneously push in the black, spark igniter button 'til it "clicks". (That igniter is a piezzoelectric lighter and is the reason you don't need a match).
7. Keep holding in that black, gas control knob, and Keep clicking the black igniter button until the pilot lights.
8. Keep holding in the black gas control knob for about a minute. This warms up the bimetal thermostat down there. (Your finger will get tired).
9. Release the gas control knob. The pilot should remain lit. If it does not, ya gotta start over at step four, and repeat the process.
10. If the pilot stays on, turn the black gas control knob to "ON". And you're done.
11. Turn on the wall electric switch and your log fire should start.
If nothing wants to work. Make sure you've followed the directions exactly, and then contact the gas company if all else fails. You may have a gas flow problem.
If there is heavy accumulation of dust or a faulty condition on the heating equipment, they will not light the pilot until the customer has the problem corrected. Dirty or malfunctioning heaters may create a risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. Any maintenance work must be scheduled with a private licensed heating/air conditioning contractor. We suggest setting up a service contract with a reputable licensed contractor to assist with annual maintenance.
For more information, or to schedule pilot lighting, please call (210) 353-2222.