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GOFAR Services, LLC - Appliance Repair Houston, TX - Chapter 3DIAGNOSIS AND REPAIR BASICS 3-1(a) "GREEN" PLUGSDON'T use them on refrigerators.
To avoid this, designers use a gas safety valve that does not open until ignition is assured. Different manufacturers have designed different methods of keeping the gas safety valve closed until ignition is guaranteed. It is important to know which you are dealing with, because many of the valves look the same. If you try to test a low voltage valve by putting high voltage across it, you will burn it out. Do not confuse the oven gas thermostat valve with the safety valve.
You can find them in the Yellow Pages under the following headings: APPLIANCES, HOUSEHOLD, MAJORAPPLIANCES, PARTS AND SUPPLIESREFRIGERATORS, DOMESTICAPPLIANCES, HOUSEHOLD, REPAIR AND SERVICECall a few of them and ask if they are a repair service, or if they sell parts, or both. The oven gas thermostat valve is a valve you set by hand (the oven temperature knob) to control the oven temperature. In some types of systems, the thermostat is not a valve at all; it is an electrical switch that opens or closes based on the oven temperature it senses. The gassafety valve, on the other hand, simply prevents gas from flowing to the burner until ignition is guaranteed. In systems with an electrical thermostat, the safety valve opens and closes to cycle the burner on and off, but it still will not open if there is no ignition. The nice thing about gas ovens is that there aren't a whole lot of moving parts, so wear and tear is a relatively minor consideration.
The sensing element sits right in the pilot flame. Just exactly where the sensor sits in the pilot flame is important. They'll tell you it's too complicated, then in the same breath, "guide" you to their service department. If they genuinely try to help you fix it yourself and you find that you can't fix the problem, they may be a really good place to look for service.
All that's needed is a safety valve that will sense this tiny voltage and open the valve if it is present.
Think about it if they sold you this book, then they're genuinely interested in helping do-it-yourselfers!When you go into the store, have ready your make, model and serial number from the nameplate of the fridge (not from some sticker inside the fridge). This will be an incomplete model number, but it is better than nothing and it should be good enough to get most parts with. If all else fails, check the original papers that came with your fridge when it was new. They should contain the model number SOMEWHERE. If you have absolutely NO information about the fridge anywhere, make sure you bring your old part to the parts store with you. To test, turn it on and test for continuity. Try cleaning the pilot orifice and pilot generator as described in section 6-5 and adjusting it a little higher. The pilot generator needs to be sitting right in the hottest part of the flame as described in section 6-2. If that doesn't work, we have a minor dilemma in determining whether the problem is the pilot generator or the safety valve.
The dilemma here is that the voltages are too small to be measured with standard equipment.
And the safety valve, which is usually the problem, costs twice as much as the pilot generator. What I recommend is just to replace the gas valve first; that usually will solve the problem. Any tighter than that and you can damage the electrical contacts on the valve. 6-2 (b) CAPILLARY PILOT SYSTEMSIn some systems the sensor is a liquid-filled bulb, with a capillary to the safety valve or flame switch. When the liquid inside heats up, it expands and exerts pressure on a diaphragm, which opens the valve or closes the switch. It is important to know that these sensor bulbs do not cycle the burner on and off to maintain oven temperature. It is a long, stiff-bristled brush especially made for knocking out massive wads of dust from your condenser grille. I have seen jury-rigged bottle brushes and vacuums used, neither of which clean sufficiently. If the pilot is out, the flame switch does not close and the 110 volt heating circuit is not complete, so the safety valve will not open. In hydraulic capillary systems, hydraulic pressure from the capillary physically opens the gas safety valve. It's true that diagnosing and repairing electrical circuits requires a bit more care than most operations, due to the danger of getting shocked. Gas for the primary pilot may come from either the thermostat or directly from the gas manifold. When the thermostat valve is turned on, the pilot flame gets bigger, heating the sensor bulb, which activates the safety valve (hydraulically) and the burner ignites.
Remember the rule in section 3-4 (1); while you are working on a circuit, energize the circuit only long enough to perform whatever test you're performing, then take the power back off it to perform the repair. Gas for the secondary pilot comes from the oven thermostat itself. When the oven reaches the correct temperature setting, the thermostat drops the pilot flame back to the lower level, the safety valve closes and the burner shuts off. You will only need to be able to set the VOM onto the right scale, touch the test leads to the right place and read the meter. In using the VOM (Volt-Ohm Meter) for our purposes, the two test leads are always plugged into the "+" and "-" holes on the VOM. If you don't have a good strong pilot (secondary pilot, in two-level systems) that engulfs the pilot sensing bulb with flame, try cleaning the pilot assembly and sensor bulb as described in section 6-5. For example, if there's a 50 setting and a 250 setting on the VAC dial, use the 250 scale, because 250 is the lowest setting over 120 volts. Touch the two test leads to the two metal contacts of a live power source, like a wall outlet or the terminals of the motor that you're testing for voltage.
If it is a safety valve replace that. In a two-level pilot system, remember that the main oven thermostat supplies the secondary pilot with gas. So if you cannot get a good secondary pilot the problem may be the pilot assembly, or it may be the thermostat. The spark module is an electronic device that produces 2-4 high-voltage electrical pulses per second. It's derived from the word "continuous." In an electrical circuit, electricity has to flow from a power source back to that power source. These pulses are at very low amperage, measured in milliamps, so the risk of shock is virtually nil.
The spark ignition module is usually located either under the cooktop or inside the back of the stove.


The same module is used for both the surface burner ignition and the oven burner ignition. However, the spark is not certain enough to light the oven burner, and the gas flow is too high, to rely on the spark alone.
It should peg the meter all the way on the right side of the scale, towards "0" on the meter's "resistance" scale.
If the meter does not read zero resistance, adjust the thumbwheel on the front of the VOM until it does read zero. These are the same switches as shown in section 5-3.The flame is positioned between the spark electrode and its target.
If the heater's leads are still connected to something, you may get a reading through that something. If there is still live power on the item you're testing for continuity, you will burn out your VOM in microseconds and possibly shock yourself. Touch the two test leads to the two bare wire ends or terminals of the heater. So when the pilot flame is burning, electricity from the spark electrode is drained off to ground, and sparking stops. You can touch the ends of the wires and test leads with your hands if necessary to get better contact. Spark ignition, a pilot, a flame switch and TWO - count 'em - TWO safety valves; one for the pilot and one for the burner. If there is GOOD continuity, the meter will move toward the right side of the scaleand steady on a reading.
When you turn on the oven thermostat, a cam on the thermostat hub closes the pilot valve switch. This opens the 110 volt pilot safety valve and energizes the spark module, igniting the pilot.
As in the other spark system, the pilot flame provides a path that drains off the spark current, so the ignitor stops sparking while the pilot is lit. If the meter moves only very little and stays towards the left side of the scale, that's BAD continuity; the heater is no good.
As long as the oven thermostat is turned on, the pilot valve switch stays closed, so the pilot valve stays open and the pilot stays lit. When the pilot heats the pilot sensing element of the flame switch, the flame switch closes. In a glass-tube or bare-element heater, you may be able to see the physical break in the heater element, just like you can in some light bulbs. If you are testing a switch or a thermostat, you will show little or no resistance (good continuity) when the switch or thermostat is closed, and NO continuity when the switch is open.
If you do not, the switch is bad.3-3(c) AMMETERSAmmeters are a little bit more complex to explain without going into a lot of electrical theory. If you own an ammeter, you probably already know how to use it. If you don't, don't get one.
Is there sparking after the thermostat is shut off? IF SPARKING OCCURS(The pilot may or may not light, but the main burner is not lighting) Remember that the thermostat supplies the pilot with gas in these ovens, and only when the thermostat is on. So if you don't have a primary and secondary pilot flame, odds are the problem is the pilot orifice or oven thermostat. The greater the current that's flowing through a wire, the greater the magnetic field it produces around the wire.
The ammeter simply measures this magnetic field, and thus the amount of current, flowing through the wire. To determine continuity, for our purposes, we can simply isolate the component that we're testing (so we do not accidentally measure the current going through any other components) and see if there's any current flow. To use your ammeter, first make sure that it's on an appropriate scale (0 to 10 or 20 amps will do).
If that doesn't work, replace the pilot assembly. If you do have a good strong secondary pilot that engulfs the pilot sensing bulb with flame, then odds are that the oven safety valve (or flame switch, whichever is attached to the pilot sensing bulb in your system) is defective.
Replace the defective component.IF SPARKING DOES NOT OCCURSomething is wrong with the high-voltage sparking system. If you are in a hurry to use your oven, you can turn on the oven thermostat, carefully ignite the primary pilot with a match and use the oven for now; but remember that the minute you turn off the thermostat, the pilot goes out. Are the cooktop ignitors sparking? Turn the "energy saver" switch to the "economy" position to shut off the anti-sweat mullion heaters (See section 4-1.) Close the refrigerator door to make sure the lights are off. What typically goes wrong with the sparking system is that the rotary switch on the valve stops working. There may still be a tiny mullion heater energized in the butter conditioner or on the defrost drain pan, but the current that these heaters draw is negligible for our purposes (less than an amp). If you don't, the defrost heater or terminating thermostat is probably defective.3-4 BASIC REPAIR AND SAFETY PRECAUTIONS1) Always de-energize (pull the plug or trip the breaker on) any refrigerator that you're disassembling.
If you need to re-energize the refrigerator to perform a test, make sure any bare wires or terminals are taped or insulated. Energize the unit only long enough to perform whatever test you're performing, then disconnect the power again. 2) NEVER EVER chip or dig out ice from around the evaporator with a sharp instrument or knife. You WILL PROBABLY puncture the evaporator and you WILL PROBABLY end up buying a new refrigerator.
If the switch does not test defective, replace the spark module. Remember that these switches are on 110 volt circuits. If you get too fast and loose with pulling these leads off to test them, you might zap yourself.6-4 GLOW-BAR IGNITIONA glow-bar ignitor is simply a 110 volt heating element that glows yellow-hot, well more than hot enough to ignite the gas when the gas touches it. If you use a blow dryer, take care not to get water in it and shock yourself.Better yet, if you have the time and patience, leave the fridge open for a few hours and let the ice melt naturally. It is wired in series with the oven safety valve. When two electrical components are wired in series, they share the voltage (see figure 6-I) according to how much resistance they have. You can remove large, loose chunks of ice in the evaporator compartment by hand, but make sure there aren't any electrical wires frozen into the chunks of ice before you start pulling them. 3) Always re-install any removed duck seal, heat shields, styrofoam insulation, or panels that you remove to access anything. If the ignitor has, say, two-thirds of the resistance of the entire circuit, it will get two-thirds of the voltage.


They're there for a reason. 4) You may need to empty your fridge or freezer for an operation. If you do not have another fridge (or a friend with one) to keep your food in, you can generally get by with an ice chest or a cardboard box insulated with towels for a short time. Never re-freeze meats; if they've already thawed, cook them and use them later. 5) If this manual advocates replacing a part, REPLACE IT!! So unlike the flame safety switch system (which has a safety valve that looks almost exactly like this one,) this safety valve is a low voltage valve. Let's talk about honey for a minute. There is a reason that it stopped you can bet on it and if you get it going and re-install it, you are running a very high risk that it will stop again.
When the ignitor heats up, the resistance drops, and electricity is able to flow through it more easily, and the voltage across it drops. Now apply that fact to what we just said about the ignitor and gas valve splitting the voltage. Replace the part. 6) Refrigerator defrost problems may take a week or more to reappear if you don't fix the problem the first time.
When the ignitor is cold, its resistance is high, and it gets most of the voltage. So much, in fact, that there isn't enough voltage left to open the safety valve. When the ignitor heats up, the resistance drops, the safety valve gets more voltage, and bingo! That's how long it will take the evaporator to build up enough frost to block the airflow again.
After fixing a defrost problem, keep an eye out for signs of a recurrence for at least a week. The sooner you catch it, the less ice you'll have to melt. 7) You may stop the compressor from running using the defrost timer or cold control, by cutting off the power to the fridge, or simply by pulling the plug out of the wall. However, if you try to restart it within a few minutes, it may not start; you may hear buzzing and clicking noises.
If the system has not had enough time for the pressure within to equalize, there will be too much back pressure in the system for the compressor motor to overcome when trying to start. Usually the fuse is located down near the safety valve, but in some installations it's under the cooktop or inside the console. Simply remove the power from the compressor for a few more minutes until the compressor will restart. 8) Do not lubricate any of the timers or motors mentioned in this manual. If the ignitor gets old and weak, it will still glow, but usually only red- or orange-hot, not yellow-hot. In a cold environment, oil will become more viscous and increasefriction, rather than decrease it. It can throw you; since you see the ignitor working, you think the problem is the safety valve. And electrical parts are non-returnable. When diagnosing these systems, I recommend replacing the ignitor first. And over a long long period of time this ash can build up and clog tiny gas orifices, like pilot orifices. In an oven, it usually also means that the pilot will not get hot enough to open the safety valve, and the burner will not light. Or the ash might build up on the pilot sensing bulb, and insulate it enough that the safety valve operates intermittently or not at all.You can usually clean them out with an old toothbrush and some compressed air, but pilot orifices are generally so inexpensive that it's cheaper and safer to just replace them. If you choose to clean them out, use a soft-bristle brush like a toothbrush, and not a wire brush; a wire brush might damage the orifice. If they genuinely try to help you fix it yourself and you find that you can't fix the problem, they may be a really good place to look for service.
Think about it if they sold you this book, then they're genuinely interested in helping do-it-yourselfers!When you go into the store, have ready your make, model and serial number from the nameplate of the fridge (not from some sticker inside the fridge).
All that's needed is a safety valve that will sense this tiny voltage and open the valve if it is present. It's true that diagnosing and repairing electrical circuits requires a bit more care than most operations, due to the danger of getting shocked. If you don't have a good strong pilot (secondary pilot, in two-level systems) that engulfs the pilot sensing bulb with flame, try cleaning the pilot assembly and sensor bulb as described in section 6-5.
If the heater's leads are still connected to something, you may get a reading through that something.
The greater the current that's flowing through a wire, the greater the magnetic field it produces around the wire. When the oven thermostat is on, and there isn't a pilot flame, is the electrode sparking? So if you don't have a primary and secondary pilot flame, odds are the problem is the pilot orifice or oven thermostat.
That's how long it will take the evaporator to build up enough frost to block the airflow again. Usually the fuse is located down near the safety valve, but in some installations it's under the cooktop or inside the console. If you do have any crusty stuff from accidental contact with food, clean as described in section 5-4.?Copyright 2011 GOFAR Services, LLC.



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