Protemp Propane Heater Won’t Stay Lit [9 Easy Solutions]

It’s very annoying when your Protemp propane heater won’t stay lit. There could be a lot of reasons behind it. So, it’s important to find out the exact reason before trying to fix the propane heater.

Most of the time, a bad thermocouple makes the Protemp propane heater turn off. But there could be other reasons as well.

In this article, we will discuss the reasons why your propane heater won’t stay lit and provide possible easy & simple solutions. Stay with us in the article to know more.

Protemp Propane Heater Won’t Stay Lit [9 Reasons To Fix]

In this section, you will find the specific reasons why your propane heater is not staying lit. Also, you will find the solutions to fix the issue by yourself.

1. Faulty Thermocouple

A thermocouple does the work of keeping the gas valve open when it senses flame. When your heater starts working, the thermocouple glows red because of the flame.

The thermocouple shuts the gas burner off while it’s not heating up. If the thermocouple is faulty, it won’t be able to recognize the heater working.


In this case, you will need to replace the thermocouple as soon as possible. Contact the manufacturer of your heater for the component.

Take your heater apart and replace the thermocouple by yourself or ask a professional for help replacing the component.

2. Detached Wire Leading To Thermocouple

There should be a wire in your heater that connects the thermocouple with the burner. If that wire is detached somehow, the thermocouple will not be able to keep the Protemp propane heater stay lit.


Open the heater and find the wire between the valve leading up to the burner. Check whether it is connected or not. If it’s detached, reattach it properly.

3. Displaced Thermocouple Heated End

The thermocouple heated end can get displaced in some cases. And as you have probably guessed, the Protemp propane heater will not stay lit in this case.


This solution is almost the same as the first one. But don’t worry, you won’t need to buy another thermocouple. Just take the heater apart and place the existing thermocouple properly. The heater should start working fine after doing that.

4. Problem In The Gas Valve

In some cases, the gas valve can get stuck and not supply enough gas. You will need to fix the gas valve manually to fix this issue.


Shut everything off, twist the valve a bit to loosen it up. If the valve is not losing itself, try using a wrench or a pair of pliers. Do not force the wrench much or the valve may break. Apply minimum pressure to keep the valve working.

5. Defective Sensor

A defective sensor often causes the propane heater to shut off. When the sensor cannot detect the flame correctly, it will think that there is something wrong with the flame. As a result, it will shut the heater off as a safety precaution. You can easily fix the issue by yourself at home.


After turning the heater on, check whether the sensor is covered by flame or not. At least 66% of the sensor should be covered by flame. Get some sandpaper and wipe the area so that the sensor can detect the flame properly. This should be able to fix the sensor. If it didn’t, you might want to replace the sensor instead of cleaning and fixing it.

6. Blocked Pilot Tube

A blocked pilot tube can be the reason behind the pilot light not working and your Protemp propane heater not staying lit. There should be a small window near the control knob. Look through it to find the standing pilot. The color of the pilot tube should not be yellow or orange. But if it is, you need to clean the pilot tube as soon as possible.


Turn the gas off and get a needle. On the top of the pilot tube, gently poke the needle to unblock it. That should do the trick.

7. Air Draft

The propane heater pilot can be affected by a draft. Remember, we don’t know for sure which defect has caused the heater to turn off. So, we should follow every possible troubleshooting step.


Find the source of the draft that is affecting the heater pilot. Once found, eliminating the source of the draft should fix the issue.

8. Spark In The Burner Chamber

The electronic spark mechanism in the heater can be faulty in some cases. There can be an issue with the electrical connection that is shutting the igniter down.


Fixing the electronic spark mechanism is not easy. You will need the electrical diagram of your product. Find the instruction manual provided with the heater and you should be able to resolve the issue by yourself.

9. Empty Gas Cylinder

If none of the solutions above work, you need to check the gas cylinder to know the gas level. Without gas, you can’t expect the propane heater to stay lit.


This is the easiest solution for fixing the propane heater. You just need to refill or change the gas cylinder to get the heater working as before.


How do you bypass a thermocouple?

Thermocouples often cause the propane heater to shut off. You need to get rid of the spring mechanism to bypass a thermocouple. Use a screwdriver to take the valve out. The thermocouple should be bypassed by this simple trick.

What causes thermocouple to fail?

A good thermocouple should not fail every now and then. When your heater raises the temperature, the metal of the thermocouple gets expanded. After you turn the heater off, the metal gets contracted again. Over time, this expansion and contraction cause metal fatigue. That’s the reason a thermocouple fails.

How do you fix a propane heater that won’t stay lit?

First of all, take a look at the thermocouple. The thermocouple is the reason why most of the propane heaters do not work. If it’s not the thermocouple, you need to do some advanced checking.

How do you keep a propane heater lit?

In a propane heater, there is a sensor that stays close to the flame. This sensor helps to keep the heater lit. You need to make sure that the sensor is close enough to sense the flame. If the sensor goes far away, the heater will turn off. You might want to bend the elements a bit to keep the sensor close to the flame.


We hope that you have read the whole article carefully. You won’t have to google “Protemp propane heater won’t stay lit” again. You have found the reasons and solutions regarding the issue. Have a good day. We will see you in another article soon.

About William

William is the founder of He has real life practical skills in fixing smoker & heating appliance issues. He loves to share his knowledge & helps others in fixing their appliances & saving their money. William firmly believes that anyone can repair his or her unit with the correct guidance & knowledge. See more at about us.

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