Gas stove that turns itself on?

27 Replies

Just got a report from the tenant that they have disconnected the gas stove because it turns itself on when they are gone? This is a modern gas range with electirc ignition. Said they have come home twice to a hot house with a stove on that wasn't on when they left. How is this even possible? I will be picking up rent tonight and taking a look. Sounds fishy to me. On one hand I don't want to buy a stove and loose this month's rent. On the other hand, if a fire occured....

Could it be possible a power surge could cause the igniterto surge and fire up? Could be a small line surge passing through a faulty limit or curcit switch.....

I once had a car radio that came on by itself, we joked about it being the goastbuster mobile

Electrical gremlins lived in english cars as well.....

Stove top burner or oven that is "on" when they come home? the oven is usually programmable, and they might have actually programmed it to come on without realizing it!

I've never heard of the burners going on themselves, since there are usually a number of safeguards involved. Such as the ignition spark is only produced when the knob has been pushed in and rotated to that position. Not to say that it can't happen ...

Originally posted by Bill Gulley:
Could it be possible a power surge could cause the igniterto surge and fire up? Could be a small line surge passing through a faulty limit or curcit switch.....

Even if there were an electrical surge that caused a spark from the ignitor, the gas supply knob still has to be rotated to supply gas to fuel the burners.

Originally posted by Steve Babiak:
Stove top burner or oven that is "on" when they come home? the oven is usually programmable, and they might have actually programmed it to come on without realizing it!

This stove is very basic with no programable timers. I called a repair company and they said it would be nearly impossible - couldn't even imagine such a case where the gas supply would open simultaneoulsy with an ignition spark occuring. This would be less likely than getting struck by lightening and it has apparently happened two times already. These people are superstitious and have asked us about spirits in the house because the TV has "turned itself on" a couple times before. They have their own oven that they have been storing in the kitchen, but not using - which is a little nicer than the one I have provided. I guess they can use their own if they are worried that mine is haunted.

It just seems so strange. I can't even imagine what kind of angle these people would be trying to work. All I can think is that wifey left it on 2 times and won't fess up. Husband is too stupid to know any better...Makes me scared they will burn the house down.

I think I will call the gas company. They will come for free and it will be a "professional" telling them there is nothing wrong (as far as gas leaks are concerned). Hopefully that works.

Well, turns out the power on the street went out. They reprogrammed the digital clock to the stove and then it started acting up. The wierd thing is that there is no automatic timer to turn stove on at a later time. So maybe the computer board got fried...Scary.

Anyway, they are more than happy to use their own stove - so I feel lucky not to have to buy a new stove with this month's rent!

I've been a firefighter for over 12 years. Ive been called to all sorts of different gas stove problems but Ive never heard of such a thing.

A short in the timer/clock could cause the oven to come on if a timer is there, most ovens have that feature (even the simpler ones). You should have the clock/timer checked and replaced.

If you take it in to be serviced at an mom and pop appliance repair center you will be out of about $75 and will have a spare stove. Unless you have a warranty steer clear of sears and the other big guys. They charge almost $100 to just show up and their parts are marked up about 400%.

Brutal. Never seen this.

Based on your simple description of the stove, it sounds totally impossible as everyone has indicated. The thought of any stove, even a high end stove, being programmable to the point that it could be turned on remotely sounds dangerous and lawsuit inviting.

I'd bet the farm they simply forgot they had it on. I'm prone to getting yelled at for emptying the oven and forgetting to shut it down.

You might ask them if they did any cooking within a few days of the incident (really you want to know if they used it the day of, but if that's all you ask, they're likely to realize what you're getting and say no.)

Whenever possible, I change over to electric - personal preference and they've been a lot more reliable for me.

Whenever possible, I change over to electric - personal preference and they've been a lot more reliable for me.

Same here. I hate gas stoves....and I hate the idea of an open flame in one of my rentals even more. I convert all my rentals to electric stoves. Heck I even install a kitchen fire extinguisher next to every stove in all my rentals.

Maybe I have an unhealthy fear of fire...........

So, I found this forum and though that I needed to add to it. My stove is an older Magic Chef (31HN-92KX-ON) gas oven. Recently I have found that the oven turns on by its self. The gas knob for the oven is OFF. After some research, replacement of the oven thermostat is what is needed.

In my rental, I have an electric oven that won't stay on. I found that the thermostat on that isn't allowing it to stay on.

Here's where I found the information:

As far as my old oven goes, the oven thermostat is built into the oven knob. It is $82 - $135 for the part. It would be just as easy to buy a new or used oven at that point.

@James H. I have been a volunteer fireman for just over 24 years and have owned rentals for slightly longer and have never heard of this before and it would be very hard to get me to buy it. I prefer gas stoves but partly because the houses I buy are older so I worry less about wiring overloads. I do not like electric stoves they routinely burn out elements, folks get burned because they cannot see they are hot, they cost more to run, they leave tupperware on the burner when they turn it on, they keep a more even heat, etc. Gas stoves almost never wear out, but I replace the old pilot light ones with electronic ignitions when I can, as you get a gas smell when the pilot goes out.

Jerry, you're a real estate attorney... if a bad thermostat is making an oven go on and off by itself and the renter advises the landlord, but the landlord blows the renter off as causing the problem, who's at fault?

"Oven comes on when knob is shut off. Is the oven thermostat assemble # wb20k8 defective?

Joe for Model Number jgbs23ceh1cc


If the unit is coming on with the knob in the off position and the knob is not broken then the thermostat WB20K8 is defective and would need to be replaced."

they have their own stove they are storing and the solution is they can use that. Is it really turning itself on or you want to bet that was the intent of the complaint in the first place....

My SIL bought an beautiful older home with an old gas stove with the BBQ option & the down draft venting. Must have been very high end back when...

That thing would fire up for no reason even after we tore it apart. Parts were impossible to get.


The next thing was the noise in the attic but that turned out to be an old attic exhaust fan with a faulty thermostat.

Without seeing it my self I would have thought an oven turning on by itself sounds fishy but it is happening to me. I have been very careful to confirm that I am not leaving it on. I even take the knob off every time I finish cooking just incase I am bumping it. It is still turning on. Luckily it just barely heats and then goes back off. It makes me nervous though anyway. Is my best bet to just get a new oven for safety?

There have been times I have left my stove on because, to turn it off, you turn it all the way and past high, to off. They are most likely turning it all the way down to the stop and think that they are turning it off, then returning to find the burner very low but burning.

This commonly happens to people used to an electric stove.

Long story short, operator error.....

Is there a cat?

We had a tenant with a cat.  The cat liked to jump up on the turned-off stove to look out the kitchen window. It's possible that she may have turned the knob very slightly. We heard the ignition clicking once and went into the unit and turned it off.

<noticed on edit that this is a really old thread>

We have oven boards that go bad from time to time but never turn themselves on. We purchase new boards on Amazon, last one was around $73. If the rest of the stove is good we replace the board, knowing a new sealed burner stove is around $440.

They still have gas stoves? But that sounds crazy

I woke up a few minutes ago to smelling something hot.  Then heard and saw a burner on my gas stove clicking on.  Very scary.  I turned it off but am afraid it could happen again.  Really scary.

My gas oven turns itself on.  I thought I was going crazy at first.  Then I thought I was hitting the knob somehow.  I just learned tonight in another blog that it's probably a bad starter.  Sometimes my burners won't light, too; I just hear the clicking of the electronic ignition.  I suspect these problems are tied together.  I'm going to replace the oven.  

I found this forum because this morning while I was watching the news before work my gas oven turned on by itself. The bake or broil lights were not on and the clock was still on the display no temp. this is not the top burners but the oven.  In the last couple of weeks I have woke up twice to the clock blinking like the power went out but it didn't. if anyone has any suggestions please share. i am unplugging it when not in use. Prefer not to buy a new stove if this one can be repaired.

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