If you are using any old heating appliance models with a pilot light ignition system, you may wonder how much fuel and money you spend to keep the pilot light on.
In this article, we shall take you through the process of calculating the amount of fuel and money that you spend to maintain the pilot light of your heating device. We shall then answer the question of whether you should be switching off the pilot light of your heating appliance during the summer.
How much gas does a pilot light use per day?
A pilot light uses as much as 0.6 cubic meters of gas every day. This amount of gas that a pilot light uses per day translates to about 21 cubic feet of gas every day. Remember that these average figures are because the pilot light runs continuously. This contrasts with manufacturers’ claims of heating devices that use pilot lights.
How much gas does a pilot light use in a month?
A pilot light uses as much as 4.723 gallons of propane every month. This figure translates to about 416.88 cubic feet of natural gas every month. Remember that these consumption needs of a pilot light per month are average figures. They are based on the daily average consumption figures of pilot light multiplied by the number of days per month.
How much gas does a pilot light use per year?
Running a pilot light of your heating device 24/7 may result in the consumption of an average of 50 gallons of propane per year. This figure is equivalent to 5,000 cubic feet of natural gas every year. These figures explain why running a pilot light is expensive regarding the amount of fuel consumed and the dollars you sink every year.
What is a pilot light, and what does it do
A pilot light is a small flame that remains alight on some of the older versions of heating devices that use natural gas. With the pilot light, some gas-powered heating devices include furnaces, water heaters, and gas fireplaces. The pilot light comes from the device called the pilot. The pilot is a small device with the following components: the ignitor electrode, the thermocouple, and the pilot burner.
All these components play critical roles in making it easy for you to light your gas-powered heating appliance. The thermocouple ensures that the gas does not flow when the pilot flame is off, even when there is no electricity supply. This prevents accidents that would otherwise occur if the pilot light goes off and the gas keeps flowing outside.
Pilot light for furnaces
Old furnaces that were manufactured before 2010 come equipped with a pilot flame. As you would expect, the purpose of the pilot light in these old versions of furnaces is to help ignite the gas channeled to the furnace’s main burner.
When one switches on any of these old versions, the natural gas is pumped directly to the main burner of the furnace. The gas goes through a series of tubes and valves.
One valve is connected to the pilot light and controls how the gas that flows through gets into contact with the main burner. Ignition of the natural gas causes a flame that burns the fuel to produce heat.
Pilot light for fireplaces
The purpose of the pilot light in your fireplace is not any different from that of the small device in any other gas-powered device, including water heaters, gas logs, and furnaces.
The manufacturers of old fireplaces include the pilot device to make it easy to light your fireplace even when the weather outside is very chilly. The pilot produces a small flame that is called the pilot flame.
When you turn on the fireplace with a pilot light, the fireplace lights instantly as the fuel gets into contact with the pilot flame.
Pilot light for water heaters
The pilot light for water heaters comes from the pilot. The water heater pilot comprises the thermocouple, the ignitor electrode, pilot burner. It is entirely similar to any pilot that you would find in related heating appliances that burn gas to produce heat energy.
When the water heater suddenly stops heating the water, the chances are that the pilot light is out. Relighting the pilot light of your water heater need not be a complicated process if you have a basic understanding of how a pilot functions in your water heater.
Pilot light for gas logs
Gas logs have a pilot light too. The small light is supposed to run on a 24/7 basis. However, some owners of gas logs decide to switch off the pilot light when the weather outside becomes warmer.
The purpose of the pilot light in your gas logs is to make it easy for you to light this heating device even when the weather is quite chilly. If you leave this small light to run 24/7, you will end up spending a significant amount of money every year on your gas logs.
How much does a pilot light cost to run?
On average, it costs about a cent to run the pilot light of your heating device that utilizes either propane or natural gas for one hour. Propane is usually more expensive than natural gas; therefore, it will cost you 1.62 cents to keep the pilot light using a heating appliance for one hour.
On the other hand, it will cost you only 0.62 cents to keep a natural gas pilot light using a heating appliance for an hour. The total cost of running a pilot light in your gas-powered heating appliance depends on many factors. Some of the most critical factors are whether you keep your pilot light on 24/7.
Some people switch off the pilot light during the summer. If you switch off the pilot light of your heating device during the summer, you will end up spending much less money on the pilot light than when you let it remain alight 24/7365.
Does leaving the pilot light use much gas?
Leaving the pilot light on uses much more gas than occasionally switching it off. The manufacturers of old heating devices that consume natural gas or propane never mention that the amount of gas that the pilot light uses every day may add to massive amounts when you calculate it by the end of the year.
If you multiply the amount of gas that your pilot light consumes per year in terms of gallons and the unit price of the fuel, you will realize how much it costs you to keep the pilot light of your heating appliance on for a year.
How much does it cost to keep a pilot light on?
It may cost you up to twice as much to keep a pilot light that runs on propane than one which runs on natural gas. This difference in the cost arises from the fact that propane is more expensive than natural gas. On average, it may cost you $11.34 to keep your pilot light on propane for a whole month.
On the other hand, you may have to part with $4.49 to keep the pilot light of your natural gas-powered heating device on for a whole month. The actual cost may vary with whether you switch your pilot light off for a while.
Turning pilot light in summer
Turning the pilot light off in summer may be a sure way of reducing the total cost of running the pilot light of your heating appliance. Pilot lights are supposed to ease the lighting of your heating device, particularly during chilly days.
However, many people leave the pilot lights on for as long as they own their heating appliances. Switching the pilot light off during the summer will help save you fuel costs.
The total cost of running a pilot light depends on the amount of fuel it consumes and the fuel price. Therefore, switching it off during the summer and relighting it when necessary is a sure way of making your old heating appliance quite efficient.
How much gas does a pilot light use
A pilot gas consumes about 5,000 cubic feet of natural gas if it is left to remain alight always. This amount of gas that a pilot light consumes may be either lower or higher depending on how one uses their pilot light.
For example, if you switch off your pilot light during the summer and reignite it when it is necessary, you will end up spending much less gas than 5,000 cubic feet per year.
How much propane does a pilot light burn
A pilot light burns about 50 gallons of propane every year. This is an average figure of the amount of propane that a pilot light burns in a year. The actual figure depends on the absolute number of hours that you keep your propane pilot light on.
If you occasionally switch your propane pilot light off, the amount of propane it consumes will be less than the 50 gallons per year that we have indicated.
How much propane does a fireplace pilot light use
A fireplace pilot light will use propane equivalent to 50 gallons per year. This amount of propane may translate to about 0.0656 gallons of propane every hour when the pilot light of your heating device is alight.
Because of these figures of the amount of propane that the pilot light consumes and the resulting financial costs, it is recommended that one switch off the propane light occasionally during the summer.
How much propane does a gas fireplace use per hour?
A gas fireplace burns 0.06565 gallons of propane every hour when it is alight. If you leave it to remain alight 24/7 for a month, the gas fireplace burner will consume 4.723 gallons of propane.
The total cost of running your gas fireplace pilot light will depend on the number of hours you keep it on and the unit price of propane. Nevertheless, propane is as much as twice as expensive as natural gas.
Therefore, running a propane fireplace pilot light is more expensive than running a natural gas pilot light.
How much natural gas does a pilot light use
A pilot light will consume about 0.579 cubic feet of natural gas every hour when it is alight. This consumption rate will translate into 13.9 cubic feet of natural gas for a day. You’ll attain 13.9 cubic feet of natural gas if you keep your pilot light on for the entire day.
Your pilot light will consume a total of 416.9 cubic feet of natural gas every month. This is if you leave it alight for the entire month without switching it off, even for a day.
How much does a gas fireplace pilot light cost?
It will cost you about $4.49 to run a gas fireplace pilot for one month. This figure is the product of the amount of natural gas that the pilot light consumes in a month and the average price of natural gas.
For example, a pilot may burn 416.9 cubic feet of natural gas for one month if it runs continuously. The average price of natural gas is 0.012 per cubic foot.
Should you turn off the fireplace pilot light in summer?
You should turn your fireplace pilot off during summer. Adopting this practice will save you the amount of money you spend to use your heating device during the seasons in a year. You will save money because the pilot light will consume less natural gas or propane than when you leave it on during all the year’s seasons.
Of course, you can always relight the pilot light of your heating device during summer whenever you need to use it. The pilot light should be on during the cold weather when you genuinely need it to light your heating appliance quickly.
Using any of the gas-powered heating appliances, including water heaters, gas fireplaces, and gas logs, among others, will cost you a lot of money in the form of the cost of purchasing either propane or natural gas.
This is because the additional propane or natural gas keeps the pilot light on in these devices. If you leave the pilot light on for one year on your propane heating appliance, you will end up consuming an additional 5,000 cubic feet of natural gas or 50 gallons of propane.
These figures translate into $11.34 per month if you use a propane device or $4.49 per month using a natural gas-powered heating appliance. Therefore, switching off your pilot light during the summer is an excellent step. The best option is to use modern heating appliances with electronic ignition systems.