Burner Ignition Problem

Old 03-08-03, 10:44 AM
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stove burners - no ignition while oven is on


I have a Tappan gas stove from about 1988 I believe. Model number is 30-4988-32. I have had an ongoing problem with the stove since we moved into the house 2 years ago. When the oven is on and hot, if you try to turn on any stovetop burner, there is no ignition. You have to turn the oven off, wait a while (a few seconds to a few minutes) and then turn the burner on. At this point, the burner has a tendency to blow itself out. If you can get them lit, you usually have to turn them to "Low" to get them to stay on. Once they are on, you can turn the oven back on. Seems like a gas flow problem, but I'm not sure where to start troubleshooting. Thanks for any assistance!

Eric Williams
Old 03-08-03, 09:11 PM
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Hello: Eric

If I am reading your problem description correctly, the stove has sparking ignitors which ignite the burners. When the oven burner is on the top burners cann't be lit using the sparkers because they do not operate. If so that is one problem.

The element rod, in the oven pilot assembly, that the burner flames keep heated, is most likely defective. The element changes it's electrical resistance value which then turns off the sparking module.

That is what stops the sparking from continuing in the oven. If the element and or sparking module is defective, the problem you are describing can happen. The sparking elements fail to work.

The opposite can also happen in some cases. The sparkers fail to stop sparking or take a long period of time to stop. Clean the sparking element sensor may resolve the problem.

If that fails to solve the problem or does not continue to do so for an extended period of time, replacing the part and possibly the sparking module will be required.

There may be yet another problem with the top burners and or all burners, based on the second part of the problem description. Not sure what you mean by:

"at this point the burner has a tendency to blow itself out."

Which burner? The oven burner?

The top burners?

Blow themselves out???? Blow as in a blow torch? A forceful blowing burner flame? Like high pressure & very large flames?

If that is the case or close to the correct problem condition or description, there just may be a pressure problem. Both problems may be pressure related.

In that case you need to contact the gas supplier and have a gas pressure test done at the companies meter. That part is NOT a doityourself task.

If no pressure problem is found there or any other gas appliance has any problems, the stoves appliance regulator may be defective. Seek Professional appliance service help.
Old 03-09-03, 02:29 PM
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My apologies for the wording the question. Let's try this again.

There are no standing pilots in the range. It is all electronic ignition.

Say that I am using the oven (to make french fries for instance) at say 400 degrees. The oven is up to temp and the fries are started. Then I try to use one stovetop burner to fry a hamburger. I try to ignite the stovetop burner. I do see a spark, but the stovetop burner does not ignite. At this point, if I turn the oven off, and let it sit a while, I can turn the stovetop burner on.

What i mean by the burner "blowing itself out" is what I believe is an "excess air" condition, or a lack of gas. The stovetop burner will light only on say 1/3rd or 1/2 of the circle. The other side of the burner will not light and it makes a loud hissing sound. It will often after it has lit halfway, lose the flame and go out completely. I believe what is happening is that there is just not sufficient gas to get the entire burner lit (they do not appear to be dirty or anything, so I doubt it is dirt blocking the burner holes).

There should be sufficient gas pressure at my gas meter. I am running a natural gas furnace at 3.5" w.c. gas input pressure (80K BTU/hr furnace) and it has no problems with gas pressure or flow. I also have a gas hot water heater 34,000 BTU's that works fine too. The stove is only trying to draw 16,000 BTU's for the oven and 9,000 BTU's for the stovetop burner. It would seem that there should be sufficient gas pressure into the appliance regulator.

The thing I can't understand is that I do not have the same problem when I start the stovetop burners first. If the stove is lit and cooking, there is no problem starting the oven. But if the oven is lit first and up to temp, I cannot get the stovetop burners to light.

Thanks again for the help.

Eric Williams
Old 03-09-03, 08:18 PM
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Hello: Eric

I am begining to get a better idea on the possible problems now. Thanks for the updated information and including the other appliances, there working condition etc. Helps me to narrow down some of the potential problems.

Based upon the new info provided, the problem seems isolated to the stove appliance only. From that you will need to verfiy there is a enough volume of gas being supplied to the stove.

Which means this part gets tricky. You will need to shut off the shut off valve on the gas feed line pipe behind the stove. Slide the appliance out so you can access behind it.

While you're doing that, note if there are any kinks or sharp bends in the flex line. If so, you may have already found the problem. A restricted gas feed supply.

Which is exactly what you will be looking for. If all is okay thus far, turn off that shut off valve. Remove the connector end from the valve.


Now look around the entire room. Double check. There must NOT be any other sources of ignition anywhere. No flames, other appliances or sources of igntion ANYWHERE! NONE! PERIOD!

Once you have established the fact that no sources of igntion are in the general or immediate are, turn on the shut off valve for not more than 3 seconds. ONLY 3 seconds.

During that time frame but not much longer, the supply of gas must be reasonably forceful and with a steady flow rate. If it is, the gas supply is fine.

Which now only leaves the appliances gas regulator as the only possible defective part. It will have to be removed and replaced.

Appliance parts dealers are an excellent source for original replacement parts. Dealers are listed in the phone book under appliances.

Be sure the electrical power to the appliance is turned off, before attempting any repairs. Always check for gas leaks when ever a repair includes any connection of a gas part.

If you need further assistance, once again use the REPLY button to add any additional information or ask additional questions.

Be advised that should you not be handy with tools, care to work with live gaslines, feel comfortable dealing with conditions and problems as such, hire professional help. Be Safe. Not Sorry.

Regards & Good Luck, Forum Host & Multiple Topic Moderator.
TCB4U2B2B Company Enterprises. Energy Conservation Consultant & Gas Appliance Diagnostics Technician.

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