How to Repair a Gas Fire Pit

How to inspect and fix your gas fire pit.

Time

An hour or less

Complexity

Beginner

Cost

$20-50

Introduction

Just when you think you can relax in front of your fire pit, it doesn't light. Sometimes the fix is easier than you think.

Tools Required

  • Combination wrench set
  • Flashlight
  • Screwdrivers
  • Vacuum

Materials Required

  • 0000 steel wool
  • Gas leak detector

Project step-by-step (8)

Step 1

Turn Off Fuel Supply

  • Always turn off the fuel supply before working on your fire pit.
  • If your fire pit is fueled by propane, close the valve on the tank and disconnect the fuel line from the tank before working on the appliance.

 

Step 2

Full Tank

  • Check the fuel level on the tank; it may be empty. Even low fuel levels can make the flame sputter and easily go out.
  • Always slowly open the tank valve first before trying to lite the fire pit.
  • If you open the valve on the fire pit before the tank valve, a safety check valve in the tank may engage, causing the fuel flow to stop.

Step 3

Ignitors

  • Check if you have a spark at the ignitor.
  • Some ignitors operate on batteries. Unscrew the ignitor button or open the ignitor compartment and check for a battery.
  • Replace the battery with a new one, making sure the polarity on the battery is correctly installed.
  • Check the wire between the ignitor switch and the ignitor. Be sure it is properly connected.
  • Clean the ignitor terminal with steel wool or a soft bristle wire brush, being careful not to bend it.

Step 4

Gas Smell

  • If you smell gas when the flame is not lit, you may have a leak. Turn off the gas valve immediately.
  • Inspect the supply line for cracks or breaks.
  • Use a gas leak detector liquid to find leaks in the supply line, valve or fittings.
  • Apply a liberal amount of gas leak detector liquid to the supply line, valve or fittings.
  • Slowly turn on the gas valve a half turn. If you see bubbles, you’ve found your leak. Turn off the gas valve immediately.
  • Replace any damaged lines or faulty valves, and tighten the fittings where bubbles were present.
  • Repeat this procedure until there are no gas bubbles found.

Step 5

Dirty Burner Ports

  • Check burner ports and the fuel orifice for blockages and keep them clean.
  • Remove all the lava rocks, then vacuum or blow out the burner ports.

Step 6

Thermocouple

  • Some fire pits have a thermocouple which senses the heat from the pilot light flame. That signals the gas valve to stay open when the pilot is on.
  • Tighten all connections at the thermocouple and gas valve. (Do not overtighten.)
  • The thermocouple could be faulty. If so, it's time to call an expert technician.

Step 7

Whistle Sound

  • You have plenty of flames, but now it makes a whistling sound.
  • Bends in the flexible lines may cause a whistling sound.
  • The wrong size regulator on the supply line can result in too much gas supply and may cause a whistling sound.

Step 8

Owners Manual

  • Keep the owners manual for your fire pit easily accessible to reference the model and part numbers.
  • Most manufacturers offer replacement parts. Or check with appliance parts stores like Dey Distributing.