5-10 Minute Assessments


Electric stoves use 2,000-5,000 watts per hour. Gas burners typically use 7,000 BTUs per hour, and gas ovens, 16,000.

Gas stoves ignite the gas with a spark. The electric igniter can fail. Very old units might have a small, always-on flame called a pilot light instead of an igniter.

A well-maintained stove is safer and gives you more control over your cooking.


Every 6 months

Repair and replacement costs

Typical Costs

  • Repair: $100 – $430
  • Replace: $350 – $2,000

Life span


  • Electric: 10 – 13 years
  • Gas: 10 – 15 years

Steps to Assess Your Stove


Step 1: If your stove is electric, go to step 3. If it runs on gas, find the shutoff valve. It’s usually located beside or behind the unit, or in a cabinet nearby. Make sure it’s in the on position.


Step 2: Check your stove’s ignition source. You’ll have either electric igniters or pilot lights beneath the stovetop and below the oven floor. If you have pilot lights, make sure they’re lit. If they won’t light, you have a problem with gas flow. If your electric igniters won’t spark, make sure the oven is plugged in and check your circuit breaker. If they still won’t work, you may need to replace them.


Step 3: Turn on your stove. Make sure you can control the burners and oven. If the flames on a gas stove flicker or a burner on an electric stove heats unevenly, you may need to replace or clean the burner.


Step 4: Your oven door should open smoothly and close securely. The gasket should keep heat in. If it’s damaged, replace it immediately. The racks should remain stable when extended. If they tip, check to see if they’re upside down or backward.


Step 5: Make sure the racks, oven floor, burners, and drip pans beneath the burners are clean. Grease can create smoke and dangerous flames.