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Old 02-21-2004, 07:59 PM   #1
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Oven won't light

I am trying to get the oven to light in my 1970 Sovereign but it won't cooperate. The pilot lights easily and remains on but the heating element itself won't light up. I don't hear or smell any gas coming though the line. Is there something I might be missing somewhere?

Thanks again...

Jim Yobp
Clifton, Colorado

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Old 02-22-2004, 06:50 AM   #2
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How long are you waiting from demanding termperature? Mine takes about 45 sec before lighting the oven burner after pilot startup.

Sorry if this is too simple but sometimes the easiest solutions work.

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Old 02-22-2004, 08:33 AM   #3
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Oven won't light

Greetings Jim!

Welcome to the Forums and the world of Vintage Airstream ownership!

There are any number of issues that might result in problems with lighting the oven. Among the items that might cause difficulties:

1.) The individual gas shut-off valves for the stove-top as well as the oven. Is the oven valve fully open? These valves aren't always easy to find on the Vintage coaches - - on one of mine, both valves are under the stove-top while one the other coach the oven shut-off is under the oven.

2.) Are both LP bottles full, and have the lines been purged of air? A common approach to lighting appliances in coaches is to first light the stovetop burners and allow them to burn until the flames stabilize (an indicator that much of the air has been purged from the system).

3.) Is the LP regulator known to be functioning properly? This has been the first problem area on both of my coaches. My Airstream dealer replaced the LP regulator on both of my coaches when their service department did the initial check-out on both coaches.

4.) The thermostat is another area that can provide problems. It is probably the more difficult problem to solve as replacements can be difficult to find depending upon the mode of your range/oven.

Good luck with your investigation!

Kevin D. Allen
WBCCI (Lifetime Member)/VAC/Free Wheelers #6359
AIR #827
1964 Overlander International/1999 GMC K2500 Suburban (7400 VORTEC/4.11 Differentials)
1978 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre/1975 Cadillac Eldorado Convertible (8.2 Liter V8/2.70 Final Drive)
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Old 04-11-2004, 02:14 AM   #4
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Gee, I'm having the exact same problem; stove works fine, pilot light in the oven works fine, so I assume the gas is getting to the oven, but it wont light. I waited at least 10 minutes with the pilot lit, but main burner wouldnt light. I blew compressed air over all the parts with no luck. What should I do next?
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Old 04-11-2004, 10:44 AM   #5
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The pilot light heats a thermo-couple which allows the gas to be released to the burner..... I'll bet the thermocouple is the culprit.

It is a small tube that is heated by the pilot light and is attached to the gas valve in the oven. When heated it emits a small electrical voltage which tells the gas valve that there is fire there to ignite the burner.
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Old 04-11-2004, 03:28 PM   #6
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I am having a similar problem and haven't had time to get it fixed. The pilot lights ok (I have mine set at the maxium pilot size). When turning the temperature control valve to a temperature setting (350F for instance), the size of the pilot should increase and begin to warm up the thermocouple. Once the thermocouple comes up to temperature, it "tells" the temperature control valve which in turn ignites the main burner.

In my case, when I move the control knob to a temperature setting above pilot, nothing happens. If I fiddle with the temperature control (rotate knob, push knob in, etc.), sometimes the pilot size will increase and activate the thermocouple and subsequently the main burner. As soon as I stop pushing on the knob, the pilot size decreases and the main burner goes out.

So I thinks it's a reasonable guess that I need a new temperature control valve.

I did recently replace the propane regulator but that didn't change the situation.
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Old 04-11-2004, 07:55 PM   #7
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Hello, I had the same thing happen this weekend on the Argosy we just bought, after I got the pilot working and nothing happened I took a small tourch I have and heated up the thermocouple and the main burner lit. You can also use a lighter like some people use to light a barbacue. If the main burner lights then let it cool down and loosen the screw that holds the thermocouple so that the flame from the pilot will heat it hotter, there is also a small flame diverter where the flame of the pilot comes out you can bend to put more heat on the thermocouple, I forgot before you do all of these things, make sure that when you turn the oven on so that it is calling for heat, the pilot flame should almost double in size. Hope this helps, it worked for me. Marvin
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Old 04-19-2004, 12:12 PM   #8
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Well, its a small boat we are all in. The oven in my 67 Trotter is also faulty, but has a different gas valve with a small burner to heat the thermocouple. Burner lights, no action from the valve. This a Magic Chef model and there is no model # or serial # plate on it, so not parts support. I'm as out of ideas as everbody else , I guess. Good Luck Tom. See you on the road.
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Old 04-19-2004, 04:00 PM   #9
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You mention that you replaced the propane regulator, but did you also use a Manometer to test the pressure that it was set to? They are supposed to be set to 11/12 WC. But some are not. Even the brand new ones sometimes need to be reset after transit.

Good luck, now you all know why I don't even have an Oven
Brett G
WBCCI #5501 AIR # 49
1978 Argosy 28 foot Motorhome

Wise men talk because they have something to say; fools, because they have to say something. -- Plato

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Old 04-19-2004, 07:01 PM   #10
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At this point, I am taking it for granted that the new regulator works properly. The furnace, stove burners and refrig seem to work fine since I installed the regulator. I plan to camp this weekend and will check the water heater.

I thought this was a relatively inexpensive thing to try as opposed to replacing the temperature control for the oven. In my case, all of the parts are original (1985 vintage).

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