When the outdoor temperature starts shrinking rapidly and goes close to sub-zero, most of us will leave the idea of spending time inside the patio. It runs the risk of getting the fridge into the cold. However, with the addition of a patio heater, you can still enjoy the cooler outdoor during the snowing times.
Patio heaters, in general, come with an automatic ignition system. But what happens if it fails miserably? Will you stop enjoying time on the patio? Well, knowing how to light the patio heater manually will relieve you from such annoyance.
Also, it will give you some time to invest in finding the actual cause of the automatic ignition system of the heater not working. Once you identify the reason, you can apply quick troubleshooting.
Today, we will discuss the manual process to light the patio heater, and precautions you should take during the manual lighting. Luckily, the manual light-up process is straightforward. You may need a candle lighter additionally for the purpose.
Step One: Precautions You Should Take While Igniting Patio Heater:
Whether it is automatic or manual ignition of the patio heater, the process is pretty simple. During the manual lighting, you have to do is to turn the control knob in the right direction. However, it isn’t as straightforward as it seems.
Since patio heaters run mostly with gas and are flammable, you have to be cautious while lighting it, manually or automatically.
Here, we have enlisted a few must-follow precautions for beginners to light up the patio heater. An expert may already know these rules.
1. The gas regulator:
Firstly, you must consider the gas regulator of the patio heater. The gas regulator will actually control the gas flow for the patio heater. Hence, you can turn off the gas regulator to avoid accidents while not using the heater. Also, you can enhance or reduce the gas flow using the regulator. The gas regulator must be in good condition to prevent gas leakage. Otherwise, you seriously run the risk of getting burned when you ignite the heater. Also, after use, always turn off the regulator for safety.
2. Using nose out:
When you prepare to switch on the gas regulator, always smell around the patio heater. If you smell any gas, be cautious. It is a sign of gas leaking from the patio heater from the gas delivery pipe. In such cases, you should closely check the delivery pipe for any leakage and irregularities.
Also, when you smell any gas outside the hose, immediately replace the pipe. Also, use a fan to blow away the gas safely.
3. Be aware of flammable materials:
The gas of the patio heater is highly flammable. Hence, if its place close to any flammable or combustible material, it can be hazardous. Some of the common flammable objects include-
Also, the material list includes everything that can easily be ignited. When you plan to light up the patio heater, make sure such combustible elements aren’t close to the heater.
4. Cleaning the gas pipe and burner:
The primary cause of any accidents from the patio heater is the unclean burner and gas delivery pipe. When debris accumulates on the pipe, it increases the chance of leaking the pipe. Similarly, most of the debris is highly inflammable. Thus, the burner also becomes prone to flammability.
Also, sometimes, the gas pipe becomes clogged and disturbs the flow of the gas through it. It may also cause accidents or prevent the heater from running to its full potential. So, you should regularly check the pipe and clean it if it gets clogged.
The cleaning of the gas pipe is fairly easy. You just need to detach it from the connecting point and blow air through it to remove the debris. If you use water to run inside it, make sure it is dried properly before reattaching the pipe.
Similarly, clean the gas burner. It ensures an even flow of the gas and allows the patio heater to run with full potential. You should check for blockages and clean them if there are any.
5. Checking the gas tank:
Lastly, you should check the gas tank. When you plan to run the patio heater for long hours, make sure the tank is full. You have to lift the patio heater base to check the gas tank. If it is full, you can proceed to manually light up the heater.
You may want to add some gas to the tank if it is empty or not full. It depends on how many hours the heater will run and at what BTU capacity. Thus, we leave it to your preference.
Step Two: How to Light Patio Heater Manually In Three Easy Steps
When the automatic ignition of the patio heater fails miserably, many people actually panic. They think that the patio heater is damaged and they must replace it with a new one. But that’s not the case.
You can still light up the heater manually without the ignition system. The process includes three straightforward steps-
1. Turning heater knob:
Firstly, locate the patio heater knob. Turn the knob to its pilot position. Don’t know which way to turn the knob?
Don’t know which way to turn?
Well, the knob turning direction of the patio heater is the same as the gas stove. If you are still unsure, follow the trick here-
Turn the knob anti-clockwise with a 45° angle. When you turn the knob properly, you should hear the sound of gas flowing to the burner from the tank.
2. Lighting up the heater:
In most cases, the patio heater will switch on when you consistently turn on the knob of the heater. You should wait for a few moments and see what happens. If the heater doesn’t turn on, you need to use a lighter.
We recommend you use a candle lighter. It helps you avoid burning your fingers. Insert the candle lighter through the hole to reach the lighting point. Finally, light up the lighter.
3. Adjusting the knob:
Once you have lighted the heater, you need to adjust the knob for the flame to your liking. You have to turn the heater knob further anticlockwise to 45° or less for the flame adjustment. The knob adjustment will depend on your heating preference and settings.
So, there you have your guideline on how to light patio heater manually. The process is straightforward and doesn’t need anything except the candle lighter. Also, in most cases, you may not even need the candle lighter.
We recommend you check the automatic ignition when it doesn’t work. If it can be repaired, that’s fine. Otherwise, you may have to replace it. So, be ready to invest a few dollars in it. But you can still comfortably do away with the manual lighting of the patio heater if you aren’t bothered with the knob turning and lighter handling steps. So, what do you prefer?
Henry Jurk is an experienced architect with over 20 years of expertise in paving. He shares his knowledge and provides solutions through his blog posts at OkPatio.com. If you have any questions about patios, gardens, and outdoor spaces, you can find the correct answers from Henry. You can contact him via email at email@example.com or through the website’s contact page.