Why Won't the Flame on My Gas Cooktop Light?

Jul 29, 2023, 17:58pm

There are several types of hobs: gas, induction or electric hob. The gas plate is easy to use and unlike an electric plate, the heat does not remain once the device is turned off.

It happens that the flame of the gas hob does not ignite and there are no sparks. In this case, it will be necessary to check:

  • the gas valve
  • the burners
  • the candles
  • switches
  • the thermostat

A well-functioning gas cooktop provides instant heat and excellent control over cooking temperatures. However, if you find that the flame on your gas cooktop will not light, it can be due to several reasons. This article will explore these potential issues and how to address them. Please note, working with gas appliances can be dangerous. Always prioritize safety and consider calling a professional if you’re uncomfortable with any troubleshooting steps.

Why Won't the Flame on My Gas Cooktop Light?

Blocked Burner Holes

The most common cause for a gas cooktop not lighting is a blockage in the burner holes. Food residue, grease, or other particles can sometimes obstruct these holes, preventing the gas from coming out and igniting properly.

Solution: Ensure the burner cap is correctly seated on the base. If it’s slightly off or tilted, it can prevent the burner from lighting. Clean the burner holes using a toothpick, needle, or compressed air to remove any blockages. Do not use a toothpick on a pilot light burner hole, as it can break off and block the hole.

Faulty Ignition Switch

The ignition switch creates the spark that lights the flame when you turn the knob on the cooktop. If this switch is faulty, it can prevent the flame from lighting.

Solution: Listen for a clicking sound when you turn the knob to the light position. If you don’t hear the clicking sound, it could mean the ignition switch is faulty and needs to be replaced. This should be done by a professional.

Gas Supply Issues

A lack of gas supply can also cause the flame on your gas cooktop not to light. This can be due to a closed valve, a kink in the gas line, or problems with your gas supply.

Solution: Ensure the gas supply valve is open, and the gas line is not kinked. If these are not issues, you might need to contact your gas supply company to check for any problems.

Moisture in the Cooktop

If you’ve recently cleaned your gas cooktop, there might be moisture in the appliance. This moisture can interfere with the gas supply or the ignition switch, causing the flame not to light.

Solution: Allow the cooktop to completely dry after cleaning. If the problem persists, consider calling a professional, as persistent moisture can indicate a leak or other problem that needs professional attention.

Failed Safety Valve

Modern gas cooktops have a safety valve that cuts off the gas supply if it senses that the flame is not lighting to prevent gas from filling up your kitchen. If this valve fails, it can prevent the flame from lighting.

Solution: If you suspect a faulty safety valve, it’s time to call a professional. Repairing or replacing a safety valve is not a DIY task due to the potential dangers of working with gas.

Why Won't the Flame on My Gas Cooktop Light?


Each button is equipped with a switch that allows the ignition of the flame. Each switch should be tested with a multimeter.

  • Remove the grates and burners. Unscrew the screws around the burners then remove the knobs by pulling them towards you.
  • Remove the switches from each faucet.
  • On your multimeter, select the lowest caliber of the ohmmeter function, 200 or 600 ohms for example.
  • Push your test probes into the terminals of the ignition system then activate each switch.

When you operate a switch, the contact should close and there should be a change of state or an audible beep (depending on the multimeter). If one or more switches do not respond, the ignition system is faulty.


The transformer is used to generate high voltage to power the spark plugs. As it works with high voltage, it cannot be tested with a conventional multimeter.

However, you can check its condition, it should not show any swelling or burns. If it is in bad condition, then change it.


A gas cooktop flame that won’t light can be frustrating and hinder your cooking activities. The issue can range from simple fixes like cleaning blocked burner holes to more serious problems requiring professional intervention like a faulty safety valve. Always prioritize safety when dealing with gas appliances, and don’t hesitate to call a professional if needed. Regular maintenance and prompt repair can ensure that your gas cooktop serves you reliably for years to come.