Opening a Kenmore 790 range to replace burner ignitor

Dang it,
My wife spilled some fluid on the burner while it was hot and the ignitor ceramic insulator on one burner cracked and it won't light now since the spark isn't up by the gas anymore, but rather down inside the cracked insulator.
I found and ordered the replacement part (~$10) , but now I absolutely can't figure out how to lift the top of the range top to access the "sealed burner" and replace the ignitor. The replacement needs to be screwed on from underneath and the wire attached.
I cannot find any hidden latches or screws. This is goofy. On my old range it was simple to lift the top.
Thanks very much for any help,
Kenmore Model 790.75762002
-Harry
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On our Kenmore gas range, you simply lifted off the little round disks over the burners and undid the screws underneath, then the top lifted up.
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some helpful diagrams usually at: http://www.repairclinic.com/0047_13.asp
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snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

Hi,
All grates come off, burner caps come off and remove the screws from each of the surface burners to lift the top panal....most/many will be rusted/frozen in place or simply will break :(
Good luck!
jeff. Appliance Repair Aid http://www.applianceaid.com /
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Jeff, you called it!
I tried removing the 3/16 hex-head screws and the sucker was frozen and the head just just twisted off. Gurrrrrrrrr.......
So what now? I'm hesitant to remove the other 11 screws thinking that most will twist off and then how will I replace them? Would WD-40 help to loosen the screws?
What do you suggest???
Thank you very much,
-Harry
Appliance Repair Aid wrote:

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Hi,
A little penetrating oil may help.
Failing that you can:
- break off the heads and drill out the screws and replace them with different screws - break off the heads and replace the burners as well - hope you get 2 for each burner that can be reused out and leave the broken one alone
Not much can be done...poor design/style...happened on them all :(
jeff. Appliance Repair Aid http://www.applianceaid.com /
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Harry,
By all means check the appliance repair sites and see if you can get an exploded view of the stove to see how it is put together. I had to replace an ignitor on mine a couple years ago and it seems to me I had the same dilemma: not at all obvious how to get the cook top apart. Finally I determined that the top will tilt up. After loosening all screws that seemed possibly relevant I had to pry the front up until it popped loose, then carefully tilt it up; I could see that as I lifted it up I was bending things under there, like the burner gas lines. I just lifted the front up about 6 inches or so and then reached in to do the ignitor replacement. Awkward. Bad design, I think; never had this sort of trouble with older stoves. Come to think of it, those old stoves needed clearning under there once in a while but nothing ever went wrong with them! Bring back pilot lights!
OK, trying to breath normally . . .
I wonder if you could just repair the ignitor with some high-temp epoxy or something.
--


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I agree, bad design. I did get an exploded view and that is interesting, but the darn screws are frozen in place and I don't know how to cope with that. There are 12 little screws, three on each burner. If I go ahead and twist the heads off (as I did on the first one I tried) I can probably get the cover up, but then I don't know how I can get out the damaged screw shafts to run in replacement screws. The high-temp epoxy is an interesting idea, but I doubt that any epoxy could stand this heat right below the flame, almost in it. hummmmmm.... -Harry
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The screws are probably soft due to the heat drawing all the temper out of them.
WD40 does nothing, it is not a penetrating oil. It is a water-displacement oil, that is where the WD comes from, and does that well. Use pb blaster or some such, get at any automotive store.
You can drill out the screws.
Ted
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I did purchase and try the PB Blaster on the screws on another burner and waited about half an hour, but the head of the first screw I tried still twisted off so I'm giving up the effort. Guess I'll call a *real* service person rather than continuing to trying to do it myself since I don't want to risk damaging the stove with my efforts and then I'd be in deep kimshe with my wife if we had to cook on a Coleman for a few days. My guess is that I'd twist off all 12 screws, then have to drill out 12 shafts, and then tap for larger replacement screws. It's truly a horrible design, and I'll just write Kenmore off my vendor list for future appliance purchases. But many hanks to all who offered advice. -Harry
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replying to hef2k, Jerry wrote:

We have one of these Kenmore gas stoves as well. The ceramic insulators developed cracks one by one. There is only one burner with a functioning ignitor left. I bought 4 replacement ignitors after the second one failed and began removing screws. They started breaking off so with one screw holding each burner to the top, I gave up. I bought a $4.00 barbeque lighter and have been happily using it for 3 years now. Better than a $500 repair bill.
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On Saturday, October 24, 2015 at 11:44:12 PM UTC-5, Jerry wrote:

Just like the old days when gramma used the white-tipped wooden matches! ζ༼Ɵ͆ل͜Ɵ͆༽ᶘ
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Don't know about the specific model in this thread, but we had a Kenmore stove/oven with spark ignition where, just as described, one of the burners stopped sparking.
So yes, we used the handheld lighter for a bit.
We had a repair tech here for other purposes and asked him what could be done. He described a pretty high and annoying amount of work, but... also explained and demonstrated a surprisingly simple short term option.
If we turned on the valve to that burner (again, which didn't spark), AND then also turned on another burner (one that did work), the second one would activate the spark ignition and light up the first.
- we'd then turn off the second.
A most curious design...
--
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On 10/25/2015 8:54 AM, danny burstein wrote:

Our range has five burners, oven, broiler. When you turn any one on to light, they all spark. Probably a safety thing in case gas is present at another burner.
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Is the oven/broiler a spark ignitor or a glow plate? The most common design nowadays (note I said "most common", not "only") is for the stovetop burners to be spark ignition, but the oven uses a glow plate.
Which is quite annoying for a bunch of reasons:
a: if you lose electricity, you can still use the stove burners. Just ignite them with a match
b: the oven will NOT work without the glow plate heating up. And to make this design even more obnoxious, in every unit I've seen the glow plate remains on the entire time the gas is flowing.
Hence there's a 400 watt (yes, I said 400 watt) electrical demand throughout the _gas_ oven usage cycle.
- which, btw, also is a headache if you'er looking at a backup power system for your home. Four hundred watts is a big enough number to be annoying, especially when you don't even realize it's going to be there...
--
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