Easy Steps for Fixing Gas Stoves

July 27, 2015

Easier Than It Looks

Don't let all those knobs and dials put you off. With a practice, you can diagnose gas stove problems and do simple repairs.

Easy Steps for Fixing Gas Stoves

A range that won’t light

The cooktop burners and the oven are ignited by separate pilot lights. If either pilot light is out, relight it. If both pilot lights won't light, the gas supply is probably cut off. For a range that won't light, follow these tips:

  • Check that the valve of the gas line is open; it may be located behind the range or under the cooktop.
  • A gas valve is open when the handle is pointing in the same direction as the pipe. If you have propane, the tank may be empty or the tank valve may be closed. Call your supplier for assistance.
  • If you had work done recently on gas lines or appliances, it's possible that the main valve was shut off. Call your gas company to turn it back on and check all pilot lights.
  • If the range seems to be getting gas, but still won't work, call for service.

Pilot light adjustment

To adjust a pilot light, follow these steps:

  • Most cooktop burners are controlled by a single pilot light under the range top. First, you need to find the pilot light. Once you have located this, look along the tube that supplies it with gas for an adjusting screw.
  • Move the screw in small increments until the flame is properly sized.
  • To raise the flame height, turn the screw counterclockwise.
  • To adjust the pilot light for the oven burner, remove the bottom cover from the oven. Turn the adjusting screw located on the safety valve or under the thermostat knob to correct the flame size.
  • If you can't find an adjusting screw, check the owner's manual or call for service on the unit.

Flame Adjustment

The flame in a gas burner is produced by a blend of gas and air. If the mixture is incorrect, the flame will not burn hot enough. Always be careful working around open flames. These tips will help you with flame adjustment:

  • Look for a circle of flames 2.5 centimetres high. Flames should be steady and blue and taper to a small orange tip.  You can adjust air shutters on burner tubes on each burner.
  • Begin by removing the range top and locating the air shutter.
  • Turn the burner on high and open the shutter until the flame is noisy and unsteady.
  • Close the shutter slowly to produce the desired blue flames. There should be a safe distance between flame and shutter.
  • When you have a good flame, tighten the retaining screw.

Pilot Light Keeps Going Out

A pilot light has to be steady for a gas stove to operate properly. If your pilot keeps going out, check the following:

  • If the pilot flame ignites but goes out right away, increase the flow of gas by turning the adjusting screw.
  • If the flame is the right height, change the gas/air mixture.
  • If the problem persists, look for drafts around your home. Open windows or slamming doors can cause a pilot light to go out.

Pilotless Range Won't Light

In order to ignite a range, your gas stove needs electricity. If the range won't light, the following steps may help:

  • Make sure that the stove is plugged in and a circuit breaker hasn't tripped or fuse blown.
  • Turn on a burner and hold a lit match over it. If it won't ignite, gas is probably not reaching the range.
  • Make sure that gas valves are open. If the burner can be lit with a match, an igniter may be faulty.
  • There are two igniters, each controlling two burners. Lift or remove the range top and turn on the burners. You should hear a click in the igniter or see sparks. If you don't, the igniter should be cleaned or replaced.

Gas Stove Care

With practice, diagnosing and fixing minor problems will help you keep your gas stove in great working order.

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