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Question DetailsAsked on 1/8/2017

the pilot light is on in my furnace but only part of the burner is lighting up or receiving gas to light up

part of the burner is lit just not the whole burner why

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2 Answers


If gas furnace, probably blocked by dust/cobwebs in or on one or more of the burner tubes (usually about a half dozen or so in typical furnace). The gas flows into the tubes at VERY low pressure - something on the order of 1/10th psi typically - most of the impetus for gas movement is the pretty minor suction created the gas expanding at the orifices or slots it comes out of as it heats and rises up the flue, so it takes VERY little to block it.

Another possibility is that the air gap which is usually present at the inlet of the tube is mis-adjusted so their is to much or too little air - though yuou would normally still get a flame, just not a clean blue one. And of course this wouldnot change unless someone messed with the furnace.

Remotely possible - that the gas control valve internal springs are going bad so you are not getting full gas flow to the furnace.

If propane or LNG fed - could also be a misadjusted gas pressure valve at the tank, or the tank is running out of propane liquid and is down to basically just gas, so you are getting low incoming pressure.

If an oil furnace (though you said gas), they have to be seriously cleaned periodically (usually annually) to clear gum and varnish from the jets - so you might have some blockage in the sprayer jet(s).

Another reason for burner malfunctions, though in my experience a lot more common in water heaters, is rust from the flue and innards of the furnace piling up on the burner and obstructing flow.

Either way, Heating and A/C would be the Search the List category to search for well-rated and reviewed vendors for diagnosis and adjustment or repair. And if it has not been serviced (inspected, cleaned, adjusted) in the last year, ask for that - that might well be all it takes to remedy the situation.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD



This is Erick in Member Care. Thanks for your interest in Angie's List!

We'll be happy to help find top rated Heating & A/C provider to look into this and make sure your pilot burner is fixed, but it doesn't look like you have a subscription to the List yet. You can join by visiting or by giving us a call. Our call center is available 8:00 am-9:00 pm weekdays and 8:00-5:00 pm ET on Saturdays.

Thanks for your question and we look forward to assisting you!

Answered 3 years ago by Member Services

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