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Water Heater: Gas

Homeowner Use and Maintenance Guidelines

Carefully read and follow the manufacturer's literature for your specific model of the water heater.



Condensation inside your new water heater may drip onto the burner flame. This causes no harm and, in most cases, will disappear in a short period of time.


Drain Tank

Review and follow the manufacturer's timetable and instructions for draining several gallons of water from the bottom of the water heater. This reduces the build-up of chemical deposits from the water, prolonging the tank's life and saving energy dollars.



Never light a gas pilot when the water heater tank is empty. Always turn off the gas before shutting off the cold water supply to the tank.

To light, the water heater pilot, first remove the cover panel on the tank to expose the pilot. Then rotate the on-off-pilot knob to the pilot position. When the knob is in this position, the red button can be depressed.

While depressing the red button, hold a match at the pilot. Once the pilot lights, continue to hold the red button down for 30 to 60 seconds. When you release the red button, the pilot should stay lit. If it does not, wait several minutes to allow the gas to dissipate from the tank and repeat the entire process. If it stays lit, rotate the on-off pilot knob to the on position.

Reinstall the cover panel and then adjust the temperature setting with the regulating knob on the front of the tank.

Water heaters sometimes collect small quantities of dirty water and scale in the main gas lines, putting out the pilot light.

While away from home for an extended period of time, set the temperature to its lowest point and leave the pilot lit.



Vacuum the area around a gas‑fired water heater to prevent dust from interfering with proper flame combustion. Avoid using the top of a heater as a storage shelf.



The recommended thermostat setting for everyday use is “normal.” Higher settings can result in wasted energy dollars and increase the danger of injury from scalding. Hot water will take longer to arrive at sinks, tubs, and showers farther from the water heater.



Before calling for service, check to confirm that:

  • The pilot is lit. (Directions will be found on the side of the tank.
  • The temperature setting is not on “vacation” or too low.
  • The water supply valve is open.

Refer to the manufacturer's literature for specific locations of these items and possibly other troubleshooting tips.

Even if the troubleshooting tips do not identify a solution, the information you gather will be useful to the service provider you call.


Parasol Properties Limited Warranty Guidelines

Refer to the manufacturer's limited warranty for information regarding coverage of the water heater. 

See also Plumbing