How to Relight a Water-Heater Pilot Light

If you have shut off your water heater for draining or repairs or to conserve fuel while away on a trip, you must relight the pilot manually. Here are a few steps to help you relight your water heater safely.


  • If the control knob does not pop up when you release it, call for immediate service.
  • Watch out for sharp sheet-metal edges when lighting the pilot; better yet, wear work gloves.
  • Keep your face away from the burning chamber when lighting the pilot, turning the control knob or adjusting the thermostat.