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Thread: Pilot lights

  1. #1
    Gary Winfield's Avatar
    Gary Winfield Guest

    Default Pilot lights

    Hello everyone:

    Just started doing home inspections as of July 01, 2010. I am looking for feedback on lighting or not lighting "pilot lights" What is the standard procedure in most cases? If the gas is off does anyone turn it on? What about utilities? Obviously, you can't make a complete inspection without light, gas or water.

    Replys welcome.

    Thanks

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Philadelphia PA
    Posts
    3,177

    Default Re: Pilot lights

    Gary - Welcome to the asylum.

    This has been discussed quite a few times in the past, and the general consensus seems to come down on the side of NOT lighting pilots or turning on water services, main breakers or branch circuit breakers for that matter, etc.

    "There is no exception to the rule that every rule has an exception." -James Thurber, writer and cartoonist (1894-1961)
    www.ArnoldHomeInspections.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Spring City/Surrounding Philadelphia area
    Posts
    3,473

    Default Re: Pilot lights

    Welcome to the fray Gary.

    Regarding utilities and pilot lights being off, they should be on for the inspection. If they are off, there may be a reason they are off such as leaks or existing damage to a system that might be made worse by turning things back on.

    "It takes a big man to cry. It takes an even bigger man to laugh at that man". - Jack Handey

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Lake Barrington, IL
    Posts
    1,363

    Default Re: Pilot lights

    Gary,
    I'm on the other side of the fence. I'll light pilots if the valves are on. If the valves are off I'll turn them on once someone from the seller's side says it's OK. I will also do this for the electric and plumbing systems.You're not required to turn on a system or component that has been shut down. There's no right or wrong on this, it's just a matter of opinion.

    Eric Barker, ACI
    Lake Barrington, IL

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Southern Vancouver Island
    Posts
    4,546

    Default Re: Pilot lights

    Hello Gary. Be sure to state clearly if you do or do not test a gas appliance, such as, Gas was off, not tested or inspected. Have owner verify operation.

    If you choose to turn something on, don't leave the house till you've turned those items off again.

    Watch for this one - the water heater has the water supply turned off to save money, but they left the power to the tank on. That goes in my report, possible burn out of element.

    Sometimes the shutoff taps to the sink or toilet start leaking as soon as you touch them, gotta love the HI biz.

    John Kogel, RHI, BC HI Lic #47455
    www.allsafehome.ca

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
    Posts
    2,445

    Default Re: Pilot lights

    While I used to light pilots as a routine practice, after a water heater malfunctioned and burned me, I made a new policy.
    I DO NOT LIGHT PILOTS. Period.


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