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dbradhstream 09-08-2006 02:36 PM

2006 Safari SE - Oven won't light
I love our Safari but am having an ongoing problem with the gas oven. Between holding in the pilot knob and reaching in to light the pilot light and turning the knob until the burner lights you pretty much have to be a very well coordinated contortionist in top physical condition to get the stupid thing lit. And often I can't get it lit at all. My wife has given up on it completely and won't even try any more.

Is it me or the oven? Are all of these gas ovens this hard to light? Ideas, recommendations, please ... I'd hate to own this trailer for 20 years and all the while wishing I'd gotten it with the convection microwave instead.


mickleton 09-08-2006 02:43 PM

I know what you mean. You have to hold the light at least 15 seconds or so to heat up the pilot area as a safety. Once temperature is achieved then the pilot will light. The safety device is to not allow the gas on when no flame present. I am sure other members have some short cuts. We have not used our oven that often.


Alumin8 09-08-2006 03:26 PM

Dbrad and Larry,

I don't have a new coach but something doesn't sound right. I agree that you have to be a contortionist to get the stove lit but I don't believe that you have to pre-heat the pilot to get it lit. Most require that you hold a prime button while lighting long enough to get heat but it is not necessary to to pre-heat the safety valve. it is required that you hold the prime button for 10-15 seconds and that will usually be enough to keep it lit past the safety valve.

Still a pain but this should not be restrictive.


Condoluminum 09-08-2006 03:40 PM

Air in propane lines?

Not sure if problem is every time you stop or only if trialer has been stored for a while.. In ours, after a week or more of storage with main valves shut off, it takes a while to get air out of small propane lines.. It's easier to light burners directly with a long-nose butane lighter, and get gas flowing, and then deal with pilot light after first use. Takes some seconds in oven to get gas flowing, but once it does get going, re-lighting the pilot light seems much easier... Your pilot may also need adjusting..

dbradhstream 09-08-2006 03:46 PM

Thanks very much. Perhaps I'm just too impatient - it's very difficult to light every time we try to use it but I think I've probably not been giving it enough time to get the gas supply flowing sufficiently. At least I now know I'm doing the contortionist part correctly!

starflyte1 04-18-2007 05:33 PM

dbradhstream, did you ever get your oven to light? We spent our second night in our 2007 AS last night, and gave up on lighting the oven. I try to be patient, but am also a bit afraid of gas.:sad:


Dwight 04-18-2007 05:42 PM

Pat, the way we light ours is to turn the knob to "Pilot", then wait 40 seconds and then light the pilot. The flame is not very large and is hard to see if the angle isn't just right. We don't have to push any other knob or button.

wheel interested 04-18-2007 05:55 PM

It's not you, it's hard to light. I pretty much have to get down on the floor, (just so I can see) pushing on the knob and having a torch lighter on the right place. It takes awhile for it to light, maybe waiting for accumulation, warm up or getting it in the right place, but regardless it takes time. I also used to let go too soon.

moosetags 04-18-2007 07:21 PM

The oven in our 2005 25' Safari is also tricky to light. I have to lie on the floor and use a butane stick lighter while holding in the oven dial. We have used the oven a number of times, but it is not my favorite thing to do.

HankandLois 11-19-2008 04:46 PM

OY! Everytime I bend over to light the pilot light my eyeglasses fall off and I can't's like a bad comedy skit...


Foiled Again 11-19-2008 05:48 PM

I found a "shortcut"
Ditto for the contortionist act getting to see the light to make sure it's on.

Here is something very simple - turn on a burner full blast first. This sucks any air out of the line, so the pilot is getting pure propane. I have a cheap little mirror that I've stuck to the bottom of the oven with gum so I can sorta kinda see the pilot light. It'll be destroyed if I ever put a broiling pan under the flame... but when I broil I do it over charcoal outside.

The first few times I tried I had to pull out the bottom shelf and the heat diffuser to access the pilot. Press in on the bottom shelf then you can lift the front and pull it off, the flame diffuser is held on with a single wing nut.

I've thought of drilling a 3/4 inch hole through the heat diffuser and oven shelf right over the pilot so I could light it from above with a match. A feature that was on my Grandma's 1922 gas stove which was left in our basement!

Grrr too cheapass to make an oven with a sparker - grrrr.


Gene 11-19-2008 06:15 PM

Yes, lighting the oven is a pain. We use one of those gas lighters (torch lighter, butane stick lighter are probably the same) which gives some light to actually see the pilot. It's easier with 2 people, one, usually Barb, holding in the valve on the front of the stove, and me on the floor. What takes part of the time is heating up the thermocouple next to the pilot—so you have to hold in the valve until it heats up the thermocouple or the pilot goes out. The thermocouple is there for safety reasons to prevent the main gas valve from staying open if the pilot goes out; if not, boom! A hot thermocouple sends a small amount of electricity to the main gas valve and when the electricity stops flowing when the thermocouple cools down, the valve closes automatically.

It's all the same principle as lighting a gas water heater except there the valve is near the pilot and thermocouple and one person can easily do it.

The alternate way is to turn on the main gas and light the burner which will then light the pilot. The problem with that is too much gas can come out and flash back at you when lit causing a loss of eyebrows and hair among other things—I knew someone that happened to with a stove who tried to light the burner that way. So, although I've done it out of frustration, it's not a good way to do it. Waiting 40 seconds with the pilot on only could cause some flash back, but probably isn't too dangerous. I wouldn't do it. Suppose trying to do it yourself, you accidently turn the valve to the burner position while contorted on the floor, boom! I haven't got enough hair to lose any and a burning beard would not be enjoyable.

I think Barb lit it herself the last time we were out, so it can be mastered by one person, but it is a poor design. The pilot should be at the front so a normal old person could do it.

Look forward to this—eventually the thermocouple will fail and replacing it at the back of the oven will be a genuine pain.


HankandLois 11-20-2008 12:24 PM

Found msucles I didn't think I had...LOL!
We were laughing...


ScottW 11-20-2008 12:31 PM

The ovens are all the same. I've found that if I light a stove burner first, the oven is much easier to light. I presume it gets propane in the line faster. Who knows. You still have to get down your knees to light the pilot.

dbradhstream 11-20-2008 01:12 PM

Since I first posted on this issue back in '06, we've had the oven serviced - turned out our "something or other" valve was defective. Since the valve was replaced the oven lights as it's supposed to. Unfortunately, even with it working as it's supposed to it's still a pain the butt. We never use the oven any more - too hard to light and it makes the trailer too hot - so the space it occupies is wasted space for us. If I ever get a different AS it will have a microwave and no gas oven.

TBRich 11-20-2008 05:03 PM

We use our oven a lot and we love having it, but you are not alone... it is a pain in the a** to light...we seem to be have success through a combination of contortions, persistence and swear words. The dogs love to lick my face when I'm down at their level trying to light the dang can be pretty comical, especially when they get the glasses all slobbery...but we always get it lit....eventually...

Triple M 03-30-2009 08:58 PM

Iím glad Iím not the only one. I thought I was just technically challenged. But I will say my wife and I got a few good laughs. we have gone through all the same frustration and given up. Iím going to try these suggestions tomorrow. Thank you

Goal15 11-14-2011 11:14 AM

Glad to find this thread. We tried this weekend and with no success. So we will try the above methodologies... (with the notable exception of the one that Gene so wisely warns against) and see what happens.

Gene 11-14-2011 11:26 AM

Since 2008, we have got this down to a science. Now we use long wooden matches as they burn longer and I don't have to keep pushing the button on a butane lighter. A match seems to have a bigger flame most of the time. I play a flashlight on the oven door so I can see the pilot, but once it is lit, turn off the light so I can see the pilot is lit.

I find that the longer the oven hasn't been used, the longer it takes to light the pilot. I assume there is some decrease in gas pressure over time or a very, very small leak somewhere. Eventually the gas gets to the pilot and ignites. At the beginning of a season, or after a long break, it may help to run a burner for a little while to make sure there is gas to the stove.

And, remember to turn off all the burners or the oven will not light. Once lit, then turn them back on.


Goal15 11-14-2011 12:41 PM

I will have to try that this weekend.

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