7 reasons your oven won’t turn on



The kitchen is the center of the home, and the oven is the center of the kitchen. From home-cooked meals to baking family recipes, an oven is a household staple. Everyone uses the oven. It’s hard to go without an oven, even if you don’t cook often or only use it to heat a frozen pizza. So, when the oven starts acting up, it’s a problem.

What do you do if you go to preheat the oven, but it won’t turn on? A handful of problems can cause an oven not to turn on. Simple fixes such as a tripped circuit breaker can remedy the situation in time for dinner. However, such problems as a broken igniter or a blown fuse will require a technician. 


Key differences between gas ovens and electric ovens

There are two different types of ranges in modern homes. Electric ovens conduct electricity to a heating element when turned on, bringing the oven to cooking temperatures. Gas ranges use flames to heat the oven to the proper temperature. This happens when an igniter or spark electrode ignites the gas.

Despite gas and electric ovens cooking food the same way, they are different. They each use different parts. So, when trying to figure out why your oven won’t turn on, it’s important to keep in mind whether it’s an electric or gas oven.


7 reasons your oven won’t turn on

From a malfunctioning bake element to a blown fuse, there are many common reasons why your oven won’t turn on. Figuring out what is causing the issue is the quickest way to get your oven back up and running. Here are a few possible causes for oven troubles. 

Some of these issues are specifically for electric ovens or gas ovens. These types of ovens are not interchangeable, so make sure you know which type you have when troubleshooting. 

Broken bake or broil element

An electric oven uses bake and broil elements to cook, depending on which setting you choose. These parts are metal heating coils at the bottom of the oven (bake) or top of the oven (broil) that produce heat. When working correctly, these elements will get red hot. You can see them through the oven window. If the elements do not get red hot, you may need to replace them.

If the elements are not turning on, inspect them for damage. Make sure to turn off the oven before inspection. Signs of damage include blisters or holes in the metal. You can also use a multimeter tool to check that the elements are getting power. A good rule of thumb is that if your oven has a working burner, the problem is generally the broil or bake element. 

Broken igniter

Gas ovens use one of two parts to ignite the fuel and produce heat. One part is an igniter. When you turn on your gas oven, the igniter releases the gas valve and heats up, causing the gas to ignite. Therefore, if the igniter breaks, the oven won’t turn on.

A broken igniter is common. To check if the igniter is faulty, turn on the oven and watch to see if the igniter glows. If you see it glow, but the oven doesn’t light, the igniter is too weak to open the gas supply. If you do not see it glow, check the porcelain casing for breaks or cracks. You can also use a multimeter to check if the igniter has power.

Defective spark electrode

The second way a gas oven turns on is using a spark electrode. Similar to an igniter, the spark electrode uses a spark of electricity, like a spark plug, to set the gas on fire. If your oven uses a spark electrode but doesn’t turn on, check the casing for visible cracks or damage. You can find the spark electrode close to the burner. 

Determining if the spark electrode is defective is more complicated than a broken igniter or heating element. The spark electrode must be properly ground and have the correct voltage to work. If it does not, it will turn off the burner after ignition because it cannot sense the flame. If the spark electrode is defective, it is advisable to call a professional for assistance.

Blown fuses

Both gas and electric ovens use a thermal fuse to help keep the oven from overheating. If this fuse blows, the oven will not turn on because there is no safety measure. A fuse can blow for a number of reasons, including age and previously overheating. The thermal fuse can also simply trip when the oven ignites or turns on.

Checking for a blown fuse can be dangerous. If you feel uncomfortable fixing a blown fuse, call a technician. Before working on the fuse, check the manual for the location and access, as well as how to change it. Also, make sure to unplug the oven before attempting any maintenance. 

Oven control board issue

The control board is the brain of the oven. It sends signals to a variety of functions throughout the appliance. Both electric and gas ovens use an electronic control board. While a rare problem with ovens, the oven will not turn on if there is a problem with the control board. 

Use your oven manual to assist you in troubleshooting the control board. It will show you where any control panel access points are and which parts control the oven. The control board has many elements, so you will have to test each part to determine if it is faulty. You can also check the electronics for burnt, shortened or damaged cords. Electric cords are not easy to test, so you may want to hire a professional for assistance.

Power source issue

Gas and electric stoves need power to run properly. If your outlets are not providing the proper amount of power, the oven will not turn on. An electric oven requires 240 volts of alternating electrical current to run. A gas oven only needs 120 volts. Generally, the outlet provides enough power if the sensors or display is working. 

However, if the display is not working, there are a few ways to troubleshoot the problem. First, make sure the oven hasn’t blown or tripped a breaker. Then you can use a multimeter to check the power supply. Finally, you can plug in another appliance to the outlet to check if it works. 

Other oven issues

While less common, these issues can cause your oven to stop working properly. 

  • Gas safety valve. This valve prevents gas from flowing into the oven when it isn’t on. If the valve doesn’t open, a gas oven will not turn on.
  • Thermostat or temperature sensor. The thermostat or temperature sensor monitors the oven temperature to ensure it stays just right. If it fails, the oven will not turn on for safety reasons. 
  • Infinite switch. This switch controls the power for the heating elements in an electric stove. If the switch is faulty, the elements will not heat correctly.
  • Door won’t shut. Even if your oven turns on, it isn’t safe to use if the oven door won’t shut. Many times the door just needs an adjustment. However, sometimes you will need a replacement part.


How do you fix an oven that won’t turn on?

The first step to fixing a problem is to identify the issue. After checking through the issues mentioned above, determine whether oven repair is a project for you. Do you have the tools and ability to replace faulty parts in your oven? Or should you look for a local professional technician? 

You can fix many of the issues listed above by simply replacing a part. However, many issues deal with electricity and gas, so it’s understandable if it seems over your skill level. Replacing a bake or broil element is an easy DIY fix. However, replacing an igniter, spark electrode or a fuse is a more complicated project for experienced technicians. Overhauling a control board or fixing power issues is best left to the trusted professionals. 


Wall ovens and ranges are covered under the Cinch appliances warranty

When you need to find the best local help in your area, Cinch Home Services is there for you. The Cinch Appliances plan covers wall ovens and ranges, so when you need appliance repair, we can help fix it. Cinch doesn’t just cover ovens. We also cover most major appliances. What’s more, all covered repairs are guaranteed for 180 days.

Get a quote today and join the nearly 1 million customers who rely on Cinch when their appliances or home systems need repair. 


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