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Pitco Fryer Error Codes and What They Mean

Picture - Pitco Fryer Error Codes and What They Mean

Pitco fryers are a mainstay in many restaurants, bars and other dining establishments. Since these units are used on a daily basis, it’s no surprise that issues can pop up from time to time. When troubleshooting your unit, you might notice error codes or flashing lights.

But what do they mean? We've made a list of common Pitco fryer error codes and tips to help you out.

Before you dig deeper, make sure to identify the model. Your model and serial number can be found on the data tag generally located on the inside of the fryer door. Keep this info handy if you need to do deeper research or contact an authorized technician.

Each unit has different controls. We'll be addressing bulb and capillary thermostats, solid state controls, digital controls and the I-12 computer control.

Flashing Light on Pitco Bulb and Capillary Systems

Bulb and capillary thermostats are the simplest controls a Pitco fryer has. These feature a simple knob attached to a thermostat in the unit. The capillary tube is filled with an expanding liquid to open and close electrical contacts in response to temperature changes. Since there’s no readout, troubleshooting takes more inspection. The system can’t tell you when there are temperature inaccuracies except for when the high limit is tripped, so you’ll have to check using a separate digital thermometer.

Flashing Lights on Pitco Solid State Temperature Controls

Solid state controls don’t have a digital readout. The system has a knob with three lights indicating power, heat demand and heat feedback/status. Sometimes, this control is the primary one on your unit, the only one you’ve got. Other times, it's the backup for your digital control or the I-12.

The leftmost light has a lightning bolt symbol below it and is the power indicator. It will light up green when the control is turned on. The heat demand indicator is the middle light, and will be lit when the control is demanding heat. The rightmost light is the heat feedback and status indicator. This light follows the heat demand light but also flashes for troubleshooting.

Second Light Lit but Heat Feedback Indicator Not Lit

If the heat demand indicator (second light) is lit, but the heat feedback indicator is not lit, the typical causes are:

  • Tripped high limit device – If the high limit device is tripped, reset it.
  • Low pilot light or ignition issue – On gas fryers, a low pilot flame or problem with the ignition module may be occurring. Both of these issues need to be diagnosed by a qualified professional.
  • Open line fuse – On electric fryers, check for an open fuse line.

Heat Feedback Indicator Light Flashing Seven Times

A flashing light or an unlit light during regular operation on a unit with solid state temperature controls might mean something is wrong. This control monitors the drain valve on your fryer, so if the valve is detected open, the control stops heating because it assumes the fryer has been drained. If this condition occurs, the heat feedback light on your Pitco fryer will be flashing seven times, pause, then repeat.

You can reset the drain interlock by following these steps:

  • Step 1. Close the valve
  • Step 2. Turn the control OFF
  • Step 3. Refill the vat with oil
  • Step 4. Turn the control ON

In the event that this fault is occurring and the drain valve is closed, the issue needs to be further diagnosed by a qualified professional.

Heat Feedback Indicator Flashing Three Times

If the heat feedback indicator is flashing three times on your Pitco unit, it means there is something wrong with the thermal sensing probe being open or shorted. If everything is connected properly and there’s no visible damage to the wiring, the probe needs to be replaced.

Understanding Error Codes on a Pitco Digital Control

Digital controls do have a digital readout, so that makes it easier to find out what’s wrong with the unit. Here are some common error codes on a Pitco fryer with a digital control:

  • Drn turn off – This error happens when the drain is detected as being open. As with the solid state control above, this control detects the status of the drain and will disable heat accordingly. To solve this issue, ensure the drain is closed and that the vat is filled. If this error is occurring and the drain appears closed, contact a service technician.
  • Prob – This error on your Pitco fryer means a fault in the probe has been detected. Is the wiring damaged? If the probe wiring looks undamaged and is securely connected, then you’ve got to contact a technician to further diagnose the issue.
  • Hi – A Hi error could mean either the high limit has been tripped and needs to be reset, there’s an open line fuse, or there’s a problem with the ignition module. If resetting the high limit as instructed in your manual doesn’t solve the issue, the problem needs to be addressed by a qualified technician.

Understanding Error Codes on a Pitco I-12 Computer Control

The I-12 Computer Control is Pitco’s most advanced control option. Here are some error messages you may see on your fryer:

  • PROBE OPEN - All cooking and heating will be suspended if you see this error because the temperature probe has shorted or failed.
  • HIGH TMP - This means the vat temperature has exceeded the set temperature by 40°F or a maximum temperature of 410°F. An alarm will also sound. This display will not show the status of a mechanical high limit, however, so keep that in mind if you have a backup control.
  • DRAINING TURN OFF - This message occurs when the drain valve is open. Logically the vat is assumed to be empty and so your unit won’t heat. If the drain valve is closed, and opening/closing does not change this condition, you’ll need to contact a service technician.
  • HEAT FAILURE - This means the heating system has failed to respond, which can occur because a high temperature limit switch has been tripped and needs resetting. On gas deep fryers, "HEAT FAILURE" may display if the pilot fails to light or if the pilot flame is too weak as detected by the ignition module.
  • SYSTEM FAILURE - You might think your fryer is doomed if you see this message, but it could just be a shorted probe that needs replacing. Still, you will need to contact a qualified professional to solve this problem.

Need a little more help? Check out our collection of Pitco manuals for additional error codes and specific troubleshooting tips.

Please contact a local authorized service agent who can help with this specific unit and all your commercial kitchen equipment needs.