Can Gas Ranges Run Without Electricity?
How Do Gas Burners Work?
You know the clicking sound you hear when you're lighting a gas burner? That's the sound of the burner's electric ignitor creating small sparks. When you turn the burner's dial to the "Ignite" or "Lite" position, the sparking begins to happen as gas is released through the small holes in the burner. The spark ignites the gas, and a flame appears. However, if there's no available electricity, there won't be any spark, so you're responsible for lighting it up.
How to Light a Gas Stovetop During a Power Outage
To light a gas burner without electricity, first strike a match (we recommend the long wooden kitchen matches to lower the risk of burning yourself), and hold it directly next to the flame ports. Immediately turn the gas knob to the lowest possible setting. Your burner should ignite almost instantaneously. Extinguish the match right away and use the gas knobs to adjust the flame's level as needed. After you're finished cooking, just turn the knobs all the way off and the flame should go out.
Can I Do This on Any Gas Cooktop?
There are certain models of gas cooktop – especially newer models – that are made with a safety feature called an interlock. This feature was once primarily seen on industrial gas stoves, but today it can also be found on many domestic models. The purpose of an interlock is to prevent hazardous gas leaks by completely cutting off gas flow to the burners in the event of an electrical outage. Any attempt to light a gas burner with an interlock during a power outage will not be successful. To see if your stove is made with an interlock, check the owner's manual or manufacturer's website.
What About Lighting a Gas Oven During a Power Outage?
While it is possible to light a cooktop during an outage, you're unfortunately out of luck when it comes to lighting the oven itself. Most of today's models require electricity to operate and cannot be manually ignited, so your baking will just have to wait until the power comes back.
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