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Gas Cooktop, Oven, Range, Stove Repair Guide

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1. Why doesn't my gas range work at all?
2. Why do I smell gas?
3. Why doesn't the oven bake?
4. Why does it take the oven so long to bake?
5. Why should I pre-heat and how important is it?
6. Why doesn't the oven broil?
7. Why doesn't the oven bake or broil, even though the top burners still work?
8. Why won't the oven light in my range?
9. Why is the oven too hot on the outside to touch?
10. Why does the cooktop get so hot while I'm cooking?
11. Why is there a red glow in my oven, but it isn't heating?
12. Why is the oven temperature incorrect?
13. Is it safe to adjust my thermostat?
14. Why does my oven temperature seem too hot or not hot enough?
15. Why doesn't the burner work?
16. Why does it take so long for the burners on my gas stove to light?
17. Why do all of the surface burners spark when I turn one on?
18. Why does my electronic ignition or spark module only work intermittently?
19. Why has the oven light stopped working?
20. Why won't the door close or open properly?
21. Why doesn't an indicator light work?
22. Why has the clock stopped working?
23. Why does the time keep changing on my clock?
24. Is it normal for my range to make a noise when I use the oven?
25. Why does my oven smell so much during self-cleaning?
26. Is it okay to use oven cleaner on my self-cleaning oven?
27. Why does my oven door feel soft and spongy when I close it?
28. Why do I see water droplets inside the oven on the glass?
29. How can I get foods to bake evenly in my oven?
30. How do I keep foods from burning when I want them browned?
31. Can I get the stains off the burner drip pans?
32. What can I do about my rusty cast iron burners?
33. Why was there an odor and smoke when I used my oven for the first time?
34. Why does my oven smoke so much when I broil foods?
35. Why are my baked goods burning on top?
36. Why are my baked goods burning on bottom?
37. Why do I see a Fault Code and what do I do about it?

WARNING: To avoid personal injury or death, disconnect your appliance from its power source before you start any troubleshooting or repair work. Use caution working inside any appliance.

Why doesn't my gas range work at all?

Check to see whether or not there's power to the range. Is the gas on at your range? Are the pilot flames lit? Not all gas ranges require electrical power. If your range uses electronic components such as: a clock, electronic ignitor, self-cleaning, or other electronic features, the unit needs electricity to function correctly. If your range has electronic components, do any of them turn on? If they don’t, you want to check your fuse box or circuit breaker panel.

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Why do I smell gas?

If you smell gas coming from your range at any other time besides when you’re lighting it, there’s a problem. Call your local gas company and ask them to investigate the situation. If the problem is with the range, have a professional appliance repair person fix the problem.

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Why doesn't the oven bake?

When there’s no heat at all in the oven, the first thing to check should be the timer controls. An automatic cycle setting could be preventing the oven from lighting. If you have a self-cleaning range, make sure the door is in the unlock position. You will also want to check that all knobs are in the correct positions. If you have an Electronic Control, you can try unplugging the range for 30 seconds or so before you plug it back in. This can reset an Electronic Control. Make sure the gas is on to the range.

Most times when an oven won't bake, it's because the bake ignitor has gotten weak or it’s just burned out. The ignitor is a small round or rectangular device located near the burner. The ignitor is wired in series with the gas safety valve.

When the ignitor is cold, it has a lot of resistance, meaning it gets most of the electricity in the circuit. As it heats up, its resistance drops. This allows enough electricity to heat the bi-metal strip in the gas safety valve, which then allows gas to be released to the burner assembly. The gas then gets ignited by the glow-bar ignitor. The ignitor glows the whole time the burner is on, keeping the gas safety valve open. The thermostat senses when the desired temperature is reached, and cuts off electricity to the gas safety valve and ignitor.

If this ignitor is weak or burned out, it won’t heat enough to lower its resistance to the point where the bi-metal strip gets enough electricity to heat up and allow the gas safety valve to open, and it will not release gas to the burner assembly. When this happens, you may have to replace either the ignitor or the gas safety valve. Many times it’s the ignitor that is to blame, and cheaper to replace.

The gas safety valve does precisely what the name implies. It prevents gas from being introduced to the burner when there’s a possibility that it won’t get ignited properly. There are a few different variations in their operation, but the purpose is always the same, to prevent accidents. If the glow-bar or spark systems are in proper working order, you may have a faulty gas safety valve. Check it for continuity. A faulty selector switch or thermostat could also be your problem. Check the selector switch for continuity between pairs of contacts. If none, replace the switch. For the thermostat, consult your wiring diagram when testing it for continuity. If there is no continuity at any of the contact terminal points, you must replace the thermostat.

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Why does it take the oven so long to bake?

When the food is taking way too long to bake, it’s probably a weak bake ignitor. Replacing the ignitor usually fixes this problem, but you probably want to verify that the ignitor is the problem before replacing it.

Sometimes the oven thermostat or oven sensor can be calibrated wrong, or it may be faulty. If your particular range has an oven that uses an electronic thermostat, and the oven temperature is off by tens of degrees, you probably have to replace it.

On most units that have a mechanical thermostat, you can actually remove the thermostat knob, and adjust the knob to more accurately represent the actual setting of the thermostat. On many models, there's a screw on the back of the knob with a small calibration plate or ring. You can loosen this screw and adjust the calibration plate. Remember to tighten the screw again. If yours isn't adjustable, and the temperature is off by a large amount, you should just replace the thermostat.

Check the oven temperature. You can monitor the oven with a calibrating thermometer to check whether or not your thermostat is off. Make sure you pre-heat your oven if the recipe wants you to pre-heat. A couple of minutes cooking at the wrong temperature can mean a world of difference in how baked goods come out.

You also want to check your rack position, and the cooking pan placement on the racks. You want to leave an inch or two between the pan and the walls, and the same amount of space between pans. If you are using two racks, you will want to offset or stagger the pans to allow free air circulation.

A lot of people like to line their oven racks with foil to prevent food spills or drips. Unfortunately, this blocks proper airflow in the oven. If you need to use foil, use it on the rack below the one you're using, and use just enough to catch the drips from that pan. You should never foil the entire rack.

Ovens with convection features in use should be about 25F lower in temperature than the recipe calls for because the convection feature heats foods more evenly.

Another thing to check is the oven vent itself because you don't want anything blocking or covering it. Lastly, make sure the oven is level.

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Why should I pre-heat and how important is it?

Pre-heating is important because many baked goods only require a very short time to cook. By pre-heating, you get the proper temperature before you start the cooking process. If you don't pre-heat according to the recipe, you may wind up with improperly cooked foods.

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Why doesn't the oven broil?

You may have incorrect clock settings if you have a self-cleaning or timed baking oven. (Consult your owner's manual)

If the broil ignitor is not working properly, the broil burner will not work. The ignitors are round or rectangular and are right next to the burner. The ignitor is wired in series with the gas safety valve. When the ignitor is cold, it has a lot of resistance, meaning it gets most of the electricity in the circuit. As it heats up, its resistance drops. This allows enough electricity to heat the bi-metal strip in the gas safety valve, which then allows gas to be released to the burner assembly. The gas then gets ignited by the glow-bar ignitor. The ignitor glows the whole time the burner is on, keeping the gas safety valve open. The thermostat senses when the desired temperature is reached, and cuts off electricity to the gas safety valve and ignitor.

If this ignitor is weak or burned out, it won’t heat enough to lower its resistance to the point where the bi-metal strip gets enough electricity to heat up and allow the gas safety valve to open, and it will not release gas to the burner assembly. When this happens, you may have to replace either the ignitor or the gas safety valve. Many times it’s the ignitor that is to blame, and cheaper to replace.

The gas safety valve does precisely what the name implies. It prevents gas from being introduced to the burner when there’s a possibility that it won’t get ignited properly. There are a few different variations in their operation, but the purpose is always the same, to prevent accidents. If the glow-bar or spark systems are in proper working order, you may have a faulty gas safety valve. Check it for continuity. A faulty selector switch or thermostat could also be your problem. Check the selector switch for continuity between pairs of contacts. If none, replace the switch. For the thermostat, consult your wiring diagram when testing for continuity. If there is no continuity at any of the contact terminal points, you must replace the thermostat.

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Why doesn't the oven bake or broil, even though the top burners still work?

Check the timer control and make sure the oven is not in the automatic cleaning cycle. Following that, you’ll want to check the common wiring, selector switch, and thermostat. Make sure the controls and selector switches are set correctly. If the range control reads push for manual, push the knob in and try your oven and broiler again. If this doesn’t help, you probably have a faulty selector switch, thermostat, thermocouple, or a wiring problem.

If there is no separate selector switch for bake or broil, most often the problem is the thermostat. There’s not really an easy way to test the selector switch, so if you think there’s a problem with this, you should call a professional appliance repair person. The thermostat should read 0 ohms when in the on position.

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Why won't the oven light in my range?

Sometimes an oven won't light. This can be for several different reasons. Sometimes the gas safety valve will prevent the oven from getting gas. This is a safety feature to help prevent fires and explosions. You will want to test this valve for continuity. Sometimes the solenoid wiring inside can get a small crack in it. Your oven may light once, and then not again while cooking a meal. This is because as the wires heat up they expand, causing an intermittent problem. Your glow-bar ignitor may also be defective and not heating up enough for the gas safety valve to release gas to the oven burner. You can also refer to why doesn't the oven bake for a more detailed explanation.

Other items to check are the thermocouple and thermostat. The thermostat should read 0 ohms when in the on position.

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Why is the oven too hot on the outside to touch?

By their very nature, ovens can get very warm on the outside during use. If the door seal is not working properly, it can allow heat to escape from the oven and cause excessive overheating. If this happens, you should contact a professional appliance repair person.

Many ovens have a door lock that will prevent you from opening the oven during the self-cleaning cycle. Sometimes you have to actually flip the lock into place to activate the self-cleaning cycle. During self-cleaning, the air inside is super-heated from 750F - 1,000F in order to burn off any food particles or greases in the oven. If you open the oven door during this time, you can get burned very seriously.

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Why does the cooktop get so hot while I'm cooking?

Heat will reflect off the cookware and surface burners during use. This can make your cooktop way too hot for bare hands or fingers to touch. Make sure the pans are no more than 1 inch wider than the burners. An example of proper pan size is an 8 inch diameter pan on a 6 inch burner. It leaves one inch overhang on each side. Also make sure that the oven vent is not blocked. You should always use potholders for your own safety when handling hot pans.

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Why is there a red glow in my oven, but it isn't heating?

If you have a glow-bar ignition system, the glow-bar may be old and going bad. It will still glow, but not hot enough to open the gas safety valve. This is a safety feature that ensures there won’t be any gas available if it won’t ignite for sure. Try replacing the ignitor. It’s a relatively cheap part to replace.

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Why is the oven temperature incorrect?

The oven temperature control is usually controlled by a thermostat that uses a capillary and liquid filled bulb. When the bulb's liquid gets heated up, it expands and puts pressure on a diaphragm which opens and closes a switch that controls the gas to the burner. Just set the dial to what you need the temperature to be. Over time, it is possible for your thermostat to lose its calibration. Sometimes, the thermostat sensing bulb comes loose from the holder. If it is out of place, the thermostat may be getting faulty readings. If this is the problem, re-aligning the bulb properly will take care of this problem.

Digital display models use a sensor to control temperature. If this is faulty, replace it. Other ovens use a mechanical system to control the temperature.

On many models, you can adjust your oven thermostat using a small screwdriver. The adjusting screw is located on the thermostat valve stem. Remove the knob and you’ll see the screw underneath it. You want to turn the oven on and run it through at least two cycles while watching a calibrating thermometer in the oven for high and low temperatures. Adjust the screw as necessary to fine tune the temperature.

Some models don’t have an adjustable thermostat, and you will have to replace the thermostat if you want to resolve the problem.

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Is it safe to adjust my thermostat?

Yes, it's safe to adjust the thermostat. On many models, you can adjust the thermostat using a small screwdriver. The adjusting screw is located on the thermostat valve stem. Remove the control knob and you’ll see the screw underneath it. You want to turn the oven on and run it through at least two cycles while watching a calibrating thermometer in the oven for high and low temperatures. Adjust the screw as necessary to fine tune the temperature.

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Why does my oven temperature seem too hot or not hot enough?

The oven thermostat is preset at the factory. Many models will allow you to adjust the thermostat. Over time, it is possible for your thermostat to lose its calibration.

You may be able to adjust your oven thermostat using a small screwdriver. The adjusting screw is located on the thermostat valve stem. Remove the knob and you’ll see the screw underneath it. You want to turn the oven on and run it through at least two cycles while watching a calibrating thermometer in the oven for high and low temperatures. Adjust the screw as necessary to fine tune the temperature.

Some ranges have a calibration plate or ring instead of a screw. The ring is located on the back side of the thermostat knob. Refer to the owner's manual for your product if you want to calibrate your thermostat using that method.

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Why doesn't the burner work?

Make sure you have turned the knob to the light position first. Then turn the knob to the desired heat setting after you have a flame. If you have recently cleaned your range, are you sure everything is dry? Moisture may prevent the electric ignition from working properly. If you hear clicking when the burner is supposed to be off, make sure the knob is turned all the way to off, and that the knob has popped out.

Range burners are round and have small holes evenly placed around their perimeter. These holes allow gas to flow out and create a controlled flame when lit. Sometimes the gas orifices get plugged and the gas can’t get through to be ignited. The trick is to clean them without making the holes any bigger. You need to clean the burners thoroughly. Many people use a toothpick, old toothbrush, or a small pin to clear the holes, allowing the gas to flow freely. If, after cleaning the burners, they still don't light, you should call a professional appliance repair person.

Sometimes ranges have different size burners on them. If you have recently cleaned the burners, it is possible you put a small burner cap on the large burner, or vice versa. Double check to make sure this isn't the problem, and make sure they are seated properly.

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Why does it take so long for the burners on my gas stove to light?

There are small orifices on the side of the burner that can get clogged from spills and ash build-up. These orifices are crucial to helping the pilot or spark igniter light the gas and keeping a clean burning flame going. You can clean the holes with a toothpick or other small tool, but be very careful not to make the holes any bigger than they were.

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Why do all of the surface burners spark when I turn one on?

Your spark ignition range will send a spark to all the burners. This is normal for spark ignitions, and you don’t need to worry. Only the burner you turned on will get gas flow and ignite.

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Why does my electronic ignition or spark module only work intermittently?

If your spark module is grounded somewhere in the range, it will not work properly. Check for broken insulation on the wiring. If this is the problem, many times you can hear the sparking in odd places in the range.

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Why has the oven light stopped working?

The oven light is usually a standard 40 watt appliance bulb. First, remove the cover and check to make sure the bulb is not loose. If it's loose, tighten it. If yours has stopped working completely, change the bulb and check the socket. If this doesn’t fix the problem, then the problem may be with the door switch on the oven’s frame, or a separate switch by the main controls. If the switch doesn’t work, or only works sometimes, you need to replace it. If your oven has a self-cleaning feature, the oven light may not operate during this time.

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Why won't the door close or open properly?

The oven door moves with two hinges. If your oven door stops closing or opening properly, chances are that the hinges have gotten bent or warped. Putting heavy items on the door or kicking or standing on an open door can also cause this type of damage. It is recommended that you replace both hinges for two reasons; one is that you need to prevent uneven wear in the hinging system, and the other is that once bent or warped, straightening it out may only be a temporary fix. Once bent, it will usually bend again. Once metal experiences fatigue, it easily bends again. If you are having trouble closing the door, it is likely that these hinges have been damaged. There are also springs on each side of the door that may have gotten too stretched out to be of much use. It is also recommended that both of these be replaced as a set.

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Why doesn't an indicator light work?

The indicator light either is broken or is not getting power when it's supposed to. First check the wiring to the indicator light. If it looks OK, check the light for continuity. If it doesn't show continuity, replace the indicator light assembly.

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Why has the clock stopped working?

If your electronic clock doesn’t keep the right time after you reset it, then you will have to replace the clock. It’s usually not a repairable item.

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Why does the time keep changing on my clock?

If your electronic clock doesn’t keep the right time after you reset it, then you will have to replace the clock. It’s usually not a repairable item.

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Is it normal for my range to make a noise when I use the oven?

As metal heats, it expands; as it cools, it contracts. It is normal to hear sounds like pings or dings as this occurs.

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Why does my oven smell so much during self-cleaning?

You are smelling a lot of burning grease, food, and drippings in the oven. Self-cleaning works by raising the temperature in the oven to over 750 F. The high heat burns everything in the oven. The burning causes an unpleasant odor. That is why it is important to ventilate the room your oven is in when you are using the self-cleaning feature. You can wipe down the inside of the oven cavity of any excess residue before the self-cleaning cycle to help reduce odors from the food debris getting incinerated. You can also remove the oven racks and clean them by hand.

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Is it okay to use oven cleaner on my self-cleaning oven?

It’s not recommended that you use any oven cleaners during the self-cleaning process. You should consult the owner’s manual before using any cleaners in the interior.

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Why does my oven door feel soft and spongy when I close it?

When you close the oven door and it feels squishy soft as it closes, it's normal. The seal should have a little give to it. That means the door seal is in good shape. If if loses that soft feel, you will need to replace the seal.

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Why do I see water droplets inside the oven on the glass?

The reason you see water condensation on the glass is probably because you're cooking some food that has a high moisture content and it is collecting on the cooler glass like dew on grass.

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How can I get foods to bake evenly in my oven?

To get your foods to bake evenly, make sure that your oven and racks are level, and that you keep some space between the walls and other pans to allow air circulation. Using the correct pan material and size is important too.

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How do I keep foods from burning when I want them browned?

In order to brown food the way you like it, set the oven to Bake, not Broil, and then use the right pan. First, shiny pans do not let food brown well, so if you want browned foods, use a darker pan. Secondly, some foods call for the oven to be pre-heated. If you don't preheat when the recipe calls for it, you will probably overcook and burn your food. Finally, place the pan in the middle of the oven on the centre rack to promote even heating.

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Can I get the stains off the burner drip pans?

The burner drip pans may get stained over time. Once they are stained, it’s very difficult to clean them. You can try a mild cleanser. Some people like to replace the burner drip pans every two to three years.

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What can I do about my rusty cast iron burners?

Manufacturers often leave the bottom of cast iron burners unfinished so that the gases left over in the iron from the manufacturing process can escape during heating. When you wash these burners, do not let them sit in water for an extended period. Another tip is to coat the bottom of the burner with a thin layer of vegetable oil or cooking spray. Make sure to wipe off any excess oil. You may see some smoke during the first use after using the oil to treat the cast iron burners.

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Why was there an odor and smoke when I used my oven for the first time?

This may be from the binding agent used in the fiberglass insulation. It is recommended that you turn the oven on at 400F for a half hour or so, with a window open to vent any fumes or smoke. You may want to use the oven's self-cleaning feature to burn off the smells faster. If your oven has a ventilation fan, turn it on to help clear smoke and odors during the self-cleaning cycle.

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Why does my oven smoke so much when I broil foods?

It is possible that your oven has accumulated a buildup of grease that is now burning off. Another reason could be that the broiler pan is upside down and enabling the grease drippings to burn up from the broiler. You should also make sure to give the meat enough clearance from the flames.

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Why are my baked goods burning on top?

The reason your baked goods are burning on top could be related to food placement in the oven cavity. Try to centre the pan and leave room on all sides for air circulation. Another reason could be that your burner flame is too hard. You can try to decrease the amount of air that the flame is receiving. Pay attention to preheating times.

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Why are my baked goods burning on bottom?

The reason your baked goods are burning on bottom could be due to you using dark cookware. Dark cookware cooks your foods faster than bright shiny cookware. Make sure you aren't blocking the air circulation in the oven by using foil over the racks. Another reason could be that your burner flame is too soft. You can try to increase the amount of air that the flame is receiving. Pay close attention to preheating times.

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Why do I see a Fault Code and what do I do about it?

Most fault codes are model specific, and you either need to look at your owner's manual or go to the manufacturer for information regarding fault codes. Sometimes unplugging the appliance for a minute and then powering it up again will clear a fault code. Usually though, you will need to do some type of repair or call a professional appliance repair person.

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