What Causes Continuous Clicking in a Gas Cooktop?

Fred's Appliance
November 25, 2019
Oven Repair

Click, click, click – You expect to hear the sound for a few seconds when turning on the stove. However, you definitely don’t expect to hear it well after the burners are lit or even after you have shut them off. If there is a clicking sound filling your kitchen when the stove is supposed to be off, it is not as big of a problem as you would expect, but it is definitely an annoying occurrence.

What you are hearing when you hear this click sound is the spark electrode on your gas stove creating small sparks. During normal function, these sparks meet with released gas and ignite to create your flame. When it is clicking outside of ignition, it may or may not be releasing sparks. Regardless, if the gas is not turned on or there is no gas leakage, it is not particularly dangerous, just noisy. If you do suspect there may be a gas leak, you will definitely want to stop the sparking immediately and leave your home to call for emergency service.

How to Stop The Clicking Before Making a Repair

You might not have the time to stop what you are doing to make a stove repair, and you may not even need to make a repair. However, if you want to stop the clicking sound immediately, what you need to do is to disconnect your gas stove from the electricity. In most cases, this will be done at the circuit breaker. Without electricity, the spark electrode won’t spark or click anymore.

Once you do have time to investigate it a little further, you will want to shut off the gas as well just for your safety.

What Causes a Gas Stove to Click?

What do you need to look for when troubleshooting a gas stove that won’t stop clicking? In most cases, the cause isn’t actually something you need to “repair,” but there are a few parts that can go faulty in which you will want to replace.

The Stove is Dirty or Damp

This is probably the most likely cause of clicking issues, and luckily it is usually the most easily fixed. If your stove has grown dirty from food particles during the cooking process or overtime, those particles can work their way into the burner head. The same can be said if a pot boiled over or an excess of water made it onto the stove. If food or moisture reaches the spark electrode, it will cause it to click. In many cases, the food and moisture will be burned away and the clicking will stop. If this issue starts or even stops in the middle of cooking, it was due to this cause.

If the clicking didn’t stop, what you will want to do is unplug the stove and start cleaning. You will want to dry the stove and inside the burners as much as you can. For food particles, you will want to clean the burner head thoroughly, including inside the slots that release gas. To clean these, you will want to use a bit of sturdy wire or something that doesn’t have a risk of breaking and being lodged in there.

Unfortunately, if you got your burner wet, it might be a while before the clicking stops. What needs to happen is that the stove needs to fully dry. Unfortunately, no matter how much sopping you do, you probably won’t get all that moisture up. However, really all that needs to happen to fix the issue is for the stove to sit unplugged for a few hours while it dries naturally.

The Spark Ignition Switch Has Gone Faulty

Located immediately behind the control knob for each burner, there is a switch that controls the flow of electricity the spark electrode. It is equal parts likely that if this switch goes bad, it will cause continuous clicking or non-function in that electrode. If it clicks, then the flow of power is stuck on.

Unfortunately, while each burner has a separate switch, they are usually connected via a harness that forces you to have to replace every switch. However, as it is a simple case of usually just removing the knobs and lifting the cooktop so you can access the workings underneath it, it not a difficult repair.

The Spark Module is Faulty

Once the switch allows the flow of power, the next step in the spark-producing chain is the spark module that directs the voltage to the electrode. Unfortunately, this part can also malfunction and result in that constant clicking. If you have tested your switches with a multimeter and they check out, this is the next part that should be tested. Unlike the switches, there is only one spark module for all your gas burners, so if it has gone faulty resulting in constant sparking, it is likely that every single burner is sparking. If this is true, the small module will be located under your gas cooktop or in the back of your gas range.

The Spark Electrode is Faulty

The spark electrode is the final part of this chain you are following. It is the part that actually creates the spark that ignites the gas and usually the least likely to go faulty. If you have had a clicking problem in the past, and just let it click hours on end, a malfunction here becomes more likely. The more your gas stove clicks, the more worn this particular part becomes.

Although this is the least likely part to go faulty, it is also the most difficult to replace. You need to disassemble your gas burner a fair bit to get the spark electrode off and install a new one. It may be something that, because you are working on a gas appliance, you may feel more comfortable leaving for a professional technician.

If you are having a gas cooktop or any other appliance problems, contact us today so Fred’s Appliance Service can help get your appliances back up and running.

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