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Why Does My Stove Smell Like Gas?

Gas ovens are incredibly convenient and the choice appliance for the home cook. But that comes with some safety concerns and some understandable apprehension from homeowners. Gas is obviously combustible, if it wasn't we wouldn't be able to do much in the way of gas ovens. While some gas smells from your gas oven are to be expected if it's working, there are some red flags you should be aware of.

Natural gas has no natural odor. Utility companies add the sulfurous smell to it so you can be aware when there is a leak. It's a pretty easy odor to spot. And it cannot be emphasized enough that if you suspect a gas leak, do not touch or operate anything electric or anything that utilizes an open flame, get outside your home, and call 911 or your utility company's emergency line.

Is it normal to smell gas from stove?

When you toggle the dial on the front of your oven to turn on the gas range, you're opening a gas line to the igniter to ignite it with the pilot light. So, if you're turning the knob, it is normal to smell gas from the stove for a brief moment before the igniter catches. The problem becomes when the smell persists after the burner is lit or if you smell it when the burner is not in use. Your oven may also have a faint gas smell when you turn it on which can sometimes be exacerbated by built-up soot and debris inside the oven. If this smell does not dissipate within a few seconds, you have a problem.

A clogged igniter

This issue can have a cause in your igniter on a gas burner or in the oven itself. If you're trying to turn on a gas burner and it won't go but you smell gas, that means there's a disconnect between the gas and the igniter leading to more gas than flame. Likewise, there is an igniter at the bottom of your oven that heats that portion of the appliance. It is protected from food debris in most cases but sometimes debris can get through and begin to build up around the igniter. This also leads to an imbalance of gas and heat and may cause the smell of gas to linger. You should call a professional if you suspect the oven igniter needs examining or cleaning since it's incredibly easy to damage.

A gas smell when nothing is in use

Maybe your oven smells like gas when off. That's not good. Under no circumstances should you be smelling gas when the oven or burners are not in use, and even then it should only be a few seconds of smell. A gas leak is an emergency and can quickly become incredibly dangerous. If you smell gas at random times when the appliance is not in use, shut off all electronics and put out all open flames and get out of the house to call 911. Gas is invisible, spreads fast, and is highly combustible with just a little bit of spark. It doesn't hurt to have your gas line inspected regularly even if you don't currently suspect an issue.

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