Maytag gas range will not work in power outages

janewagnerNovember 4, 2012

Just bought Maytag freestanding double-oven gas range, and guess what?!?! With 6 days into our power outage in NJ, it will not light w/ match. Manufacturer confirmed this. Great strides in technology!! It's going back and we'll pick an LG probably. Bad design. All our friends are boiling water to heat up their kitchens and we cannot with the newest appliance on the block. Ridiculous!!!! Model MGT8885X501 -- Maytag, what are you (not) thinking?!?!

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Supposed safety item - probably some brain thinking ahead that it would be the next feature demanded by the nanny state.
It wouldn't be so bad if they put a big sticker on them to point out such moron friendly improvements.

    Bookmark   November 4, 2012 at 4:15PM
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This is news to me. I know you can't start a gas stove in a power outage just by turning it on normally like the old ones with a pilot light, but every gas cooktop I've used let you start it by setting the knob to the "light" position and firing a long gas lighter near the igniter to light the flame. This doesn't work on new gas stoves?

    Bookmark   November 4, 2012 at 6:48PM
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Almost any modern gas stoves and cooktop can be lit from a match or other flame source.

There are a few gas stoves which run everything through electronic controller boards -- the dual oven Maytages being examples --- and those stoves will not work without some electric power.

Basically, the only relatively sure way that I have found to get info is by downloading and reading the user manuals. If the manual has a section or paragraph heading that contains the words "power failure" or "electrical outage," then its burners can be lit manually. If those words are missing from the manual, then that particular stove is one of the few that can't be lit manually.

    Bookmark   November 4, 2012 at 8:48PM
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Some models of Bertazzoni ranges have an old style oven burner similar to the range top burners and they will also work without power if you light them. The trade off is that the oven has a higher minimum temperature than other ovens because the burner is on all the time. Also some find the heat to be uneven.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2012 at 1:02AM
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So does the range in question have knobs that directly control the gas valve for each burner? I have a frididaire gallery range and can lite the surface burners with no power. The oven however is electronically controlled and will not work. So now they have safety features that render it useless completely with out power. What a joke this world is becoming. We do too much to protect idiots that we unconvinced our selves.

I have to remember this if I ever but a stove again.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2012 at 10:21AM
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When I was reading reviews on Amazon, someone mentioned that all the brands owned by Whirlpool had this "safety feature." We were out of power for a week last winter and it would have been really awful if we couldn't have lit the stove.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2012 at 11:08AM
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Actually, for gas ovens, the electronic control systems (and electro-mechanical ones, too) have nothing to do with the nanny state interfering with idiots and annoying the self-sufficient. Unless you feel oppressed by having thermostatic control, that is.

As Laat2 suggested, these controls allow gas ovens --- not to mention gas and oil furnaces and water heaters, too --- to modulate and cycle heating levels in relation to specific temperatures. Rather than being a new and misguided nanny state initiative, this is old fashioned technology was developed in the previous century for use with pilot lights on gas appliances such as stoves, water heaters and furnaces. You set a temperature on a thermostat --- get the Greek etymology? -- and when the temperature is below a certain point, an electrical signal opens a solenoid (i.e., an electrically operated valve) that allows gas to flow to the burner where it is ignited by the pilot light or an ignitor glow-bar. When the burner has heated the room or oven to the desired temperature, the signal stops, the solenoid closes, the gas stops flowing and the burner shuts down until the room or oven cools down to the set point and the burner fires up again.

If you want a stove without this modern and useful convenience of thermostatic control, there is nothing that prevents you from buying an old style stove. Heck,if the nannies were ruling the world, Hotpoint would not be making a selling a 30-inch gas stove (Hotpoint RGB518PCDCT) that uses a 9v battery to run the sparkers (like those on gas bbq grills) for the stove top and oven burners. It also allows you to switch over to an oven pilot light, if you want. And, of course, you could go all the way and buy a spiffy antique Wedgewood, Chambers, etc. (A friend of mine has one and completely dispenses with pilot light in favor of using a butane bbq lighter).

But, it can be pretty hard to maintain specific and even temps. Also, pretty difficult to run an oven at low temps (say, 150F for dehydrating or 170F for "keep warm" functions.) That is what I took laat2 to have been saying about the Bertazzoni ovens. My recollection is that they pretty much do not go below 225 F.

So, the glow-bar ignitors and electronics are conveniences not oppressive safety nannies. You have certainly can dispense with those convenience if you want.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2012 at 12:16PM
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>>>"When I was reading reviews on Amazon, someone mentioned that all the brands owned by Whirlpool had this "safety feature.""Someone is always saying something on the internet, but it often ain't exactly true.

Whirlpool does own the Maytag brand and some --- just some, not all --- Maytags have stovetop burners that cannot be lit manually. Go find some manuals for Whirlpool, Maytag, Kitchenaid and Amana stoves. (AJ Madison often has links to the pdf versions). Check them. Almost every one will have a section with a caption about power outages and lighting burners with a match. A few of the manuals do not. Those are the models whose burners cannot be lit manually.


It's not like asking for help. It's like having a crib sheet. Think of it as cheating and it will be okay. (Apologies to Red Green and Buzz Sherwood for that one.)

    Bookmark   November 5, 2012 at 12:33PM
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Probably most of us could do without the oven in a power outage, I didn't have any luck lighting my Frigidaire's with a match either, it's the burners we're talking about not being able to light.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2012 at 12:36PM
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Yes, good to stick to he point. I got off on a tangent responding to mike_73 about the ovens. Sorry if it looked like I was responding you you on that one.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2012 at 1:10PM
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It seems Berta no longer has the manual ignition feature on their US sold gas ovens. Their UK site shows only dual fuel models. Suppose Europe and elsewhere are country dependent for availability.

    Bookmark   November 6, 2012 at 6:20PM
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