State Select Water Heater Troubleshooting Pilot Light

State Select Water Heater Troubleshooting Pilot Light

This is a complete guide on State Select Water Heater Troubleshooting Pilot Light. From this article, you will learn about those culprits that cause the pilot light to go out repeatedly. Without further ado, let’s dive in. 

Table of Contents

State Select Water Heater Troubleshooting Pilot Light [Ultimate Guide]

Here’s what I am going to break down in this chapter: 

  • State Select Water heater Pilot Light Won’t Stay Lit 
  • State Select Water heater Pilot Light Keeps Going Out

State Select Water Heater Pilot Light Won’t Stay Lit

The pilot light won’t stay lit if the thermocouple goes bad or the pilot light button gets broken. 

Below, I will walk you through every troubleshooting step to fix those issues.

1. Bad Thermocouple

bad thermocouple

A common water heater problem that can throw a wrench into work is a defective thermocouple. 

If it goes bad, the pilot light won’t stay lit. 

Generally, it’s a thermoelectric device that cuts the gas supply off to the unit if the pilot light doesn’t come on. The flame heats the thermocouple and allows this component to generate a small amount of electricity. 

And this small amount of current will keep the pilot gas valve open.When the pilot light goes out, no current will flow and the pilot gas valve gets closed. 

Consequently, you will get no flame, no gas flow, and the pilot light goes off. It’s simple!

How To Fix: 

To resolve this issue, you must replace the defective thermocouple with a new one. Keep in mind; replacing the thermocouple involves dealing with gas. So, I highly recommend you to call a professional to do this for you. 

However, if you want to make this replacement by yourself, you can check this article on State Select Water Heater Thermocouple Replacement.

2. Pilot Light Button Is Inoperable or Gets Broken

This gas water heater from State Select has a pilot light button to light the unit. If this button is inoperable or gets somehow broken, you won’t light the main burner. 

To get out of this issue, you should replace the gas control valve. In the ‘How To Fix’ section below, I will take you through every step to make the replacement successfully. 

How To Fix: 

Replacing the gas control valve is just a piece of cake. What you need to do is- go along with the following steps: 

Start by cutting off the gas supply to the unit at the gas manual shut-off valve. Also, disconnect the unit from electric power. 

Next, detach everything like the pilot tube, thermocouple wiring, and igniter wiring that goes into the gas control valve. 

Disconnecting everything that leads into the gas control valve

Now, remove the burner access cover from the unit.

Then, take the gas flex line out of the tee and use the tee to unscrew the gas control valve by turning it counterclockwise.

Removing the gas flex line

When the control valve comes loose, use a pipe wrench to remove the tee. 

Ensure you put a sponge down the control valve to soak water that will come out during the removal of the gas control valve. 

Afterward, remove the gas control valve and install the new replacement control valve right off the bat. 

Use the pipe to tighten up the gas control valve. After that, attach the pipe to the tee. 

It’s time to connect the gas flex line with the tee. 

Once you attach the gas flex line successfully, connect everything like the pilot tube, igniter wiring, and thermocouple wiring with the gas control valve.

Check for gas leaks. And finally, turn the gas supply on and restore the electric power.

State Select Water Heater Pilot Light Keeps Going Out

All the reasons I mentioned above can also be applied if the pilot light keeps going out. Apart from those, the pilot light will also keep going off due to the following culprits: 

3. CO Issue

If the pilot self extinguishes after a certain period during normal operation, I think there may be a CO issue. It allows a CO buildup in space, which causes oxygen deficiency at the level of the pilot. 

As a result, it will stop the continued combustion of the pilot light. 

Carbon Monoxide is a bit lighter than air, which can allow it to settle near the basement floor. When you open the door, it will create a pressure differential between the basement floor and the higher floor. 

And it will ventilate the space and allow you to relight the pilot. After that, the cycle (pilot light keeps going out) will continue. 

How To Fix: 

The best bait is to call your local fire department and see whether they would send a unit with a multi-gas meter to take some readings in the basement. 

Alternatively, get a CO alarm and install it in the basement or near floor level in the space to see whether it alarms or not. 

4. Insufficient Airflow to the Pilot

The pilot also requires oxygen to come on. If it doesn’t receive proper airflow, the pilot light won’t light. 

You know that the water heater is notorious for getting dust & dirt clogged on the vent on the bottom. Turns out, there may be a lack of proper clearance. As a result, no air will flow to the pilot to keep it stay lit. 

How To Fix: 

Begin with cleaning the vent. Ensure there is no blockage in the vent. Also, don’t forget to vacuum the water heater every time you change the filter- every six months or so. 

Lastly, raise the water heater a few inches off the ground. It doesn’t only make the process of cleaning the vent easier but also allows the air to go into the pilot. 

5. Combustion Chamber Gets Dirty

A dirty combustion chamber that can also prevent the pilot light from staying lit. 

In this case, cleaning the burner chamber will be a simple fix. To do so, just cut the gas supply off to the unit and remove the burner assembly. 

Then, take an air compressor to blow away dirt & dust from the combustion chamber.

6. Igniter Wire Comes Loose

The pilot light keeps going out if the igniter wire comes loose from the gas control. 

To resolve this issue, I recommend you take a look at the igniter wire connection. If needed, wiggle the igniter wiring to rub off the corrosion between the connection and the gas control. 

Turns, disconnect the igniter wire and reconnect it firmly to the gas control. 


A defective thermocouple is the number one reason that prevents the pilot light from staying lit. 

So, inspect the thermocouple first and replace it if needed. If it doesn’t fix the pilot light issue, check the gas control valve and change it with a new on if required. 

However, if you fail to fix the pilot light problem following this guideline, don’t hesitate to contact a certified plumber. 

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