Need help with Whirlpool Gas Range - oven won't light

Our oven is on the fritz. For awhile it was randomly turning on and off, now it just isn't working at all. Not sure if the problem is with the ignition, the pilot or what. The burners work, so it's getting gas there. We took the front apart (under the burners) and played around with the wires (there are 2 connected to a box like thing right behind the control knob, 1 yellow, 1 black), and got it going again briefly, but that was short lived. Sorry for the vague descriptions, but I have no idea what these parts are called. We think the problem lies there, behind the control knob. Does anyone know what the problem might be or what might need to be replaced? The model # is SF310PEAW0. Thanks!
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By itself? and without the oven being turned on??

Your model has a 'glow bar' ignitor so it has no "pilot".

Oven burner or surface burners??

Here is what should happen on models that use a glow coil ignitor like yours:
When the oven is turned on, the ignitor (by the oven burner) should glow red. Power goes through the ignitor to the oven gas valve which should then open to let gas into the oven burner in less than 1 minute. If the ignitor is hot enough, it will light the gas in the oven burner.
What you'll need to observe is if the oven ignitor is glowing when the oven is turned on.
If it is *not* glowing, it could be caused by an open oven ignitor or oven gas valve (both of which should be able to be tested for continuity to see) or a problem in the oven's control system or the connecting wiring. BTW. Just because an oven ignitor has continuity doesn't mean it good but if it has no continuity, it would definitely be bad.
If the oven ignitor *is* glowing but the gas valve is not opening to allow gas to flow through it or the gas is just not lighting, a bad ignitor is the most likely (~75-85%) cause of the problem. You really need an amp probe to determine if the oven valve or ignitor is the cause. If you don't have one, the ignitor is a good bet.
You can see the ignitor used on your model at the following link:
http://ng.appliance411.com/data.php?rc 55
Dan O. - Appliance411.com http://ng.Appliance411.com/?ref411=Whirlpool+gas+range
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I'm reading this thread with great interest, because I just experienced a similar problem with my oven. Mine is a Whirlpool SF330PEWN5. When the oven switch is turned on, the ignitor glows brightly, but the gas valve is not opening to allow gas to flow. I am measuring 2.5 Volts AC across the valve with the switch on and the ignitor glowing. I had assumed from this that the valve was probably malfunctioning. The valve label seems to indicate 3 Volts AC unless I'm reading it wrong (I'm trying to read it from a distance because I have not removed it). Is this the correct voltage needed to open the valve? It seems low to me.
I'm curious how the ignitor would still be the problem if this is the case. Is this because the internal resistance of the ignitor has changed to reduce the voltage across the gas valve and not allow it to open?
One other question. How would you use an Amprobe to determine whether the valve or the ignitor is bad if the two components are wired in series? Can you provide me the basic procedure for determining it?
Appreciate any help here! John
On Sat, 27 Dec 2003 16:29:59 -0500, "Dan O."

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Sorry for this test. Last message got lost. If this goes through, I'll repost the whole message. Thanks for your patience.
On Sat, 27 Dec 2003 16:29:59 -0500, "Dan O."

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Sorry if this post doubles. I'm having a little problem with setting up my new newsreader.
I'm following this thread with great interest because I am experiencing a similar problem with my oven. It is a Whirlpool SF330PEWN5.
When the oven switch is turned on, the ignitor glows brightly, but the gas valve doesn't open to allow the gas to flow to the burner. The label on the valve seems to indicate that the valve requires 3 volts AC on it's coil, but I can't be positive, since I'm reading that from a distance. I haven't attempted to remove the valve. This voltage seems low to me, but I measure 2.5 volts AC across the valve when the ignitor is glowing. Because of this, I assumed the valve was defective. Is this the correct voltage to read across the valve coil?
You mentioned that the ignitor is the most likely cause of the problem if the ignitor glows but the valve doesn't open. Does the ignitor fail in such a way as to increase its resistance so that the voltage across the valve is reduced to the point where the valve won't open?
You also mentioned using an Amprobe to determine which of the two components was malfunctioning. Even though I don't have an Amprobe, and am only using a DVM. I'm curious as to what the troubleshooting procedure would be using the Amprobe, since the ignitor and the valve coil are in series. Any help would be appreciated.
Thanks! John
On Sat, 27 Dec 2003 16:29:59 -0500, "Dan O."

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The most common cause (~80-85%) of problems in a hot surface (glow coil) ignition system is a weak ignitor. And yes, an ignitor can glow but still be defective.

Gas valves on that type of ignition system are tested for amperage going through it. The most common oven ignitors should allow 3.2 - 3.5 amps to the oven valve to allow it to open. Any more or less, and it won't.

You can read about how that system functions at the following link:
http://ng.appliance411.com/links/search.cgi?query=ignitor

Am amprode measures the current flowing through a single wire. Since those other components are in series, whatever current if flowing through the wire is flowing trough them.
Whirlpool SF330PEWN5 Oven Ignitor http://ng.appliance411.com/data.php?rc 55
Whirlpool SF330PEWN5 Oven Valve http://ng.appliance411.com/data.php?rc 52
Dan O. - Appliance411.com http://ng.Appliance411.com/?ref411=Whirlpool+gas+range
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