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GE gas oven & range do not start but stove top burners work


Premium Member
Jun 25, 2023
Model Number
More than 10 years
Is there a flow-chart for diagnosing our non-working gas oven? Broiler and stovetop both work.

One owner, 10+ year old, natural gas, never needed any repair work.

The oven worked as it should the other morning, but has not worked at all since then. When pressing 'start' to start baking and then again when pressing 'clear / off' I can hear a single click coming from near the unit's top. Sounds normal, like a valve or solenoid. What is the noise?

I thought power cycling it using the circuit breaker might 'reset it', but it did not seem to help. I left the circuit breaker off for about 5 minutes.

The oven igniter does NOT glow. Even leaving it 'on' for 5 minutes, the temperature on the control display stays at 100, and there is no gas odor.

The broiler works and it's igniter glows of course.
The 5 stove top burners all work as they should.
The digital display and buttons appear to work as they should, even for it's oven control functions.
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How can I access and remove the oven glow bar? Does the cable just pull up into the oven compartment?
I pulled the unit out from the wall and removed an upper access panel from the backside. That seems to give easy access to unplug the broiler glow bar. But I don't see a similar access panel for the oven glow bar. Since the replacment glow bars are the same for the broiler and oven, I thought I'd swap them to see if that fixes the oven.
Ok, I removed the warming draw by lifting up the nylon tab on one side, and pushing down the nylon tab on the other side. This allows access to the the connector for the oven glow bar. I hope the connector will fit through the hole to the oven compartment.
Ok, the hole in the bottom of the oven compartment was big enough on the left side to pass the connector up from the warming compartment to the oven compartment.

Mixed results.

I disconnected the broiler glow bar from it's power connector. I then disconnected the oven glow bar from it's power connector, unscrewed the glow bar, then plugged it into the broiler glow bar power connector, letting it dangle on the back of the unit. I turned on the broil. It glowed !

I disconnected it from there, then replugged it into it's original power connector, letting it dangle in the warming compartment. Turned on the oven. It glowed !

So that is mixed results. The oven glow bar seems to be working again.

Since we use the broil 1 time for every 30 times we use the oven, I'm just going to proactively swap the two glow bars at this point.
I ran into a bit of a road block while swapping the two glow bars. There are woven thermal insulation jackets on the wire pigtail on the broiler glow bar, but not on the oven glow bar pigtail. The jackets on the broiler glow bar are blackened at the point they normally pass through the back of the oven compartment, implying they are absolutely mandatory there. The oven glow bar pigtail is not blackened anywhere, implying they are not needed.

To swap the jacksets over, I needed to depin the connector shells. But I was unable to depin the pigtails from the connector shell to swap the jackets. To see what is required, I mangled apart a shell/pigtail on a scrap appliance harness, probably from a dishwasher. Looks like a precisely sized tube is needed.

So I installed the glow bar from the broiler (with the jackets) to light the oven for baking. It's working great now.

I dare not install the unjacketed oven glow bar into the broiler position, so it's just sitting on the counter. Besides, it may not be powerful enough to function.

When held in the sunshine at an angle, the broiler glow bar has an iridescent sparkly coating the element everywhere. The oven glow bar has some, but mostly they are 'burnt off'. The pigtail wires on both appear in excellent condition.

At this point, the oven works, but not the broiler. So the unit is very serviceable again.

Not sure why the oven glow bar was not glowing early on. Maybe a fouled connection. But it did glow when reconnected.

I may just replace the weak glow bar. Or I might fit the pigtail with a thermal jacket, install it for the broiler, and try to get some more usage out of it if in fact it is still strong enough.

Any suggestions for going forward would be appreciated.
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The bottom glow bar, the one with the white connector shell, is the factory original oven glow bar that stopped working, or seemed to have stopped working (oven would not ignite even after waiting 5 minutes for it to do so). The top glow bar with the black connector shell and thermal insulating jackets is the factory original from the broiler.

The heating element in the top glow bar has multicolor sparkles. The top glow bar had very little usage, about 5% compared to the bottom glow bar. The bottom glow bar has quite a bit less multicolor sparkles, perhaps 'burnt off' from 10+ years of usage. The light colored area of the bottom glow is in fact light colored. The light coloring is not an artifact of sunlight reflection. The discoloration in the metal grills is fairly equivalent between the two. Neither of the pigtail wires show signs of overheating. But the thermal insulation jackets on the upper glow bar (from the broiler) are blackened in the middle, which is where they pass through from the oven compartment to the back of the unit.

Any suggestions for going forward would be appreciated.


But the thermal insulation jackets on the upper glow bar (from the broiler) are blackened in the middle

That looks like it might have been a paper label like on the other ignitor.

Any suggestions for going forward would be appreciated.

It doesn't look like the replacement GE broil ignitor (see the link below) comes with the additional wire insulation anymore. I might put the original broil ignitor back and replace the bake ignitor. It is used the most and would likely benefit from being new ignitor.

LINK > JGB908WEK4WW Broil Ignitor

OEM GE JGB908WEK4WW Bake Ignitor
**corrected link**

Dan O.
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@Dan Thanks. There is a warning label on the broiler pigtail jacket at the blackened area. It is not charred, though it looks that way in the photo. It is intact, fully legible, and reads exactly the same as the corresponding label on the oven pigtail. Not sure if the labels are made of paper or some non-flammable foil.

Between the two glow bars that you posted links to,what is the difference btween the actual specifications? They are both called out as 218 on the exploded view diagrams.
Between the two glow bars that you posted links to?

Sorry, I linked to the same ignitor twice above. I have corrected it.

LINK > OEM GE JGB908WEK4WW Bake Ignitor **corrected link**

what is the difference between the actual specifications?

I do not know the exact difference. I suspect only GE or the part manufacturer would. They don't give out technical information for individual parts. We go by the part number supplied by the manufacturer. The mounting, wiring length, additional insulation and connector could vary.

I'm really surprised the additional wire insulation isn't on the replacement broil ignitor. GE getting cheap??

Dan O.
@Dan, Thanks. There are probably specs for current draw and specs for resistance, etc ... for technicians to verify proper glow bar function. For our GE Profile JGB908WEK4WW, what does your Technician Repair Manual have for normal specs for the broiler and oven glow bars? Granted you might not service GE ovens that way, but the Service Manual ought to have specs.

Such ignitors need to draw 3.2 to 3.6 amps to open the gas valve. Its amperage draw has to be tested to determine its functionality.

Oven-Igniter-Amps-test-both compact.jpg

Dan O.
@Dan Thanks yet again. If 3.2-3.6 amps applies to both the oven and broiler igniters in my GE, then I'm not worried about swapping the two, or buying one for the other.

The other potential problem might be differences in performance specs of the connector shell material. The white one looks like polypropylene or nylon. The black one looks like ABS. In our GE, the connectors reside in two different thermal environments. The black connector for the broiler resides outside the unit, but concealed by an access panel, so it probably stays at room temperature. The white connector for the oven resides in the warming drawer compartment that is just beneath the oven floor, so it probably is subject to the max temperature of the warming drawer. It is warmed by a large resistive heating element.

What do you think? Do you know the max temp of the warmer for our oven?
There must have been a reason for the extra wire insulation on the original broil ignitor. Exposure to heat is likely it. It may also have a more high temperature connector but in either case that is the reason I suggested putting the original broil ignitor (with the extra insulation) back in the broil position but it's up to you. g/l


Dan O.
@Dan. Thanks. It sure looks like thermal insulation, but I may be wrong. Or the jackets could also be used when abrasion is an issue during manufacture and shipping.

The boiler pigtail goes out the back of the oven through holes, first passing over a small sheet metal plate, then passing over a 1/2" or so gap filled with insulation, then passing over the rear sheet metal panel. The pigtail then takes a 90 degree turn to head over to the power harness. GE did take some measures to make sure those two sheet metal holes didn't have any sharp edges. But the underwriter laboratories may have required extra precaution.

Have you ever needed to depin an appliance connector? that is, remove one of the wires/terminals out the back of connector shell? Did you use a special tool? picture of it?

Regarding the max temperature for the warming drawer, I didn't find any specs. But the appliance label specs it as 450 watts.

I was walking out the front door to go to the local hardware store to hopefully get a small round tube that could help me depin the connectors, when low and behold a street sweeper vehicle moseyed by and just so happened to shed one of the metal tines from its brush, landing at my feet ! Just what I needed. An almost perfectly sized springy metal probe. I headed back inside and ground it down on the sides a bit, and rounded the backside to turn the profile into a half-moon D shape.

It worked like a dream. I tugged slightly on a wire, then used the probe to release the barb on one side of the terminal, then release the barb on other side. Some terminals came out just like that, others I had to go back and forth. With both connector shells off, I swapped the shells and moved the jackets, then plugged the pigtails into the shells. So now the good igniter is configured OEM style for the oven, and the failing igniter is configured OEM style for the broiler. The good igniter has no jackets and a white shell to be used to light the oven, and the failing igniter has the jackets and black shell.

20230626_005730.02.jpg 20230626_005628-02.jpg
Have you ever needed to depin an appliance connector? that is, remove one of the wires/terminals out the back of connector shell?

I have not. Glad you were able to figure it out.
Both oven and broiler are lighting now. Confident the oven will work for years to come. Not so sure about the broiler.

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