How To Replace Thermocouple On Water Heater? 6 Easy Steps!

Do you know how to replace thermocouple on water heater? Learn these six effortless steps! You won’t need to go to professional personnel to replace it. You only need enough knowledge and confidence.

Replacing any parts of our devices at home is more convenient and money-saving. You only need to read a few articles and take down the most critical and sensitive parts. Learning new strategies and methods will also give us a heads up on what might happen or valuable tips.

how to replace thermocouple on water heater

Bigger family sizes commonly use a gas-storage water heater to store 30 to 50 gallons. It uses a gas burner at the bottom to heat the water in the tank. It is the best option if you need to stock up on hot water. Unlike an electric tankless water heater, you don’t need to install each of it for a faucet. 

What Is A Thermocouple On Water Heaters?

A thermocouple measures the heat temperature and has two metals, heated and cooled, joined at the end of the wire. If you detect that your water heater does not produce hot water, maybe you need to replacer clean your thermocouple. If you need a replacement part, continue reading this article and learn how to replace thermocouple on water heaters. Either way, the thermocouple plays a significant role in water heaters. Though, some of the water heaters do not have thermocouples or thermopiles. 

Steps To Replace Thermocouple On Water Heaters

You must follow these steps correctly to ensure that your water heater functions well after replacing the thermocouple. But before disassembling your water heater, you should purchase the correct size of your thermocouple. You can check the product’s manual to ensure you will buy the exact size that you’ll need. 

Some people tend to confuse between a thermocouple and a thermopile. Both of them are measuring, but thermocouple measures the temperature while thermopile is an electric device that usually consists of thermocouples to convert thermal energy to electrical. 

If your water gas-type tank water heater does not heat up, it does not necessarily mean you need to buy a new water heater. Sometimes, you need to check its part and determine what part needs a replacement. If you already have your thermocouple on hand or want to learn before conducting a replacement. Read the steps carefully. No worries, these steps are easy to manage and understandable. 


Step #1. Turn off the gas supply

Turning off the gas supply first is essential as you will be disassembling parts in your water heater. It will ensure your safety, and there will be no gas leakage. Then, prepare your needed tools such as various sizes of wrenches or perhaps, a wrench set. Here’s how to turn off water heater.. 


Step #2. Unscrew the thermocouple

Use an appropriate screwdriver size you need to unscrew the thermocouple. Then, unscrew the gas tube to the pilot light and main burner. Unscrew the front cover and remove the burner assembly.


Step #3. Remove the old thermocouple

After successfully removing the gas burner, it’s time to remove the thermocouple. There are several brands of water heaters in the market, and thermocouples might be attached with a screw or placed in a tension bracket. If it’s connected with a screw, unscrew them or pull it out slowly from the frame.

If you choose to check your thermocouple’s heath, you can use a voltmeter to determine it. Attach the red clip into the tip of the thermocouple and clip the other one on the copper. If your voltmeter reads 20 to 30 volts, it means it is still in condition, and it only needs cleaning. But, if it is lesser into 20volts, you need a replacement. 

You may also want to read about when to replace water heater


Step #4. Install new thermocouple 

If your thermocouple needs replacement, then you need to detach the wire. Install the new one to the bracket, then attach the screw. Give at least half-inch of the tip to be aligned with the pilot flame. On the other hand, if you only need some cleanings, you will need steel wool or a sponge with a coarse side. Wipe the tip of the thermocouple with it and return in place.


Step #5. Return the burner assembly

Carefully, turn back the burner assembly at the bottom. Attach all the wires by using a wrench to the gas control valve. Connect all loose cables tightly. Note that you should be extra careful not to bend while handling the pilot light.


Step #6. Turn on the gas

It’s time to check it out. Using a soap and water mixture, wipe it on the main supply tube for any leakage. If it bubbles, it means it leaks, then tightens the connections. Turn on the water heater. Light up the pilot flame and check the thermocouple to see if it aligns with the fire.

It’s A Wrap!

Now that you have learned how to replace thermocouple on water heater; it’s easy to replace thermocouple, right? You’ve already had ideas on it. You only need to follow the steps and take safety precautions, such as turning off the gas supply and others.

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