Understanding how your appliance is meant to work may help isolate what you need to fix in the event of a fault. This is the eSpares guide to understanding how your gas hob and oven work.
Natural gas is a colourless gas that burns very efficiently with a blue flame. Gas cookers have several advantages over conventional electric models:
- They provide heat instantly
- They don't retain heat for as long after being switched off
- Gas heat can be adjusted accurately
How a Gas Cooker Works:
- Natural gas from the gas mains is piped to a connection on the back of the cooker. When you turn a cooker control knob to activate your hob burners, it opens a valve regulator, allowing the gas to flow through the jets of the burners.
- When you press the cooker ignition (or on automatic models, when the action of turning a control sets off the automatic ignition), a battery or mains-powered electronic circuit produces a spark.
- This spark ignites the natural gas, which is evenly distributed by the gas hob burners (see How a gas hob works below).
- When you need your oven, you set the control to the desired temperature, which triggers gas flow through a burner at the lower back of the oven. Its flow is regulated by a simple oven thermostat. The top of the oven tends to be hotter than the bottom, which can be useful when cooking different dishes.
- The grill works similarly, except the gas flames flow out from tiny holes in a central pipe across a metal gauze or grid. As the gauze heats up, it evenly cooks the food below.
How a Gas Hob Works:
- When the valve on your gas hob is turned to the on position, gas flows through the supply pipe to the jet.
- The jet is located under the burner.
- From here, the gas is distributed evenly in a circle by the slots on the edge of the burner.
- The burner cap protects the burner from food spills, and can be removed for easy cleaning. It also forces the gas to flow out through the slots.
- When the ignition switch is pressed, or on some models any knob turned, a spark jumps from the ignitor to the burner, and the gas starts to burn as it exits the burner slots.
- Rigid metal pan supports keep the pan level and away from the flame during cooking.
All cooker spares mentioned in this article are available at eSpares.co.uk.