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Viking stove oven problems??

OCEllen Jun 18, 2007 07:12 PM

Has anyone else experianced problems with their Viking stove oven 'preheating'? The rods heat up and glow but the gas seems slow coming on/doesn't fully ignite and the oven takes ****forever to heat up! For a $$$$ stove I expect better.

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    renov8r RE: OCEllen Jun 18, 2007 08:41 PM

    I have found that there are several brands of stoves that are a better value/perform better than recent Vikings. They were among the first companies to make commercial style ranges that were designed for home kitchens, but they have not kept pace with the competition.

    Some of their dealers have good repair crews, it might be worth having it checked out to see it if is with specs. Is it stil under warranty?

    6 Replies
    1. re: renov8r
      OCEllen RE: renov8r Jun 18, 2007 09:07 PM

      Not still under warranty :( But I'm so frustrated at this point I think I will pursue action.
      Guests coming this summer and function is needed!
      Thanks for your reply! I bought it about 4 years ago and thought I had done good research.

      1. re: renov8r
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        Mothership RE: renov8r Jun 19, 2007 03:46 PM

        renov8r - Which brands do you recommend? I am remodeling a kitchen and had already decided to avoid Viking. I'm thinking Wolf or 5 Star. Any suggestions?

        1. re: Mothership
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          Egger RE: Mothership Jun 20, 2007 06:44 PM

          I just bought a 30" Capital Range and will have it installed some time in July. I looked at all the name brand Ranges and liked the features in the Capital, including the 25,000 BTU Wok Burner. Also liked the build quality of the range that I saw in the store, including full ball bearing guides for the oven racks. Time will tell whether I have the same problems as some of the Viking owners, I sure hope I made the right decision!

          1. re: Mothership
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            Mel RE: Mothership Jul 6, 2007 08:16 AM

            consumer reports this month features info on kitchen remodeling... it was quite fascinating to see what outperformed others. They had everything from stovetops, ranges, flooring, countertops, etc.

            1. re: Mothership
              emily RE: Mothership May 19, 2010 11:48 AM

              I've had great experiences with Wolf and had a choice in my new house between Viking and Wolf. Didn't hesitate to go with Wolf, even though the builder offered a better deal on the Viking.

            2. re: renov8r
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              kenhillak RE: renov8r Feb 18, 2010 01:49 PM

              First of all, stay away from ranges with glowbar ignition sources. Glowbars performance decreases from day one. They are slow, costly to replace and most importantly use tons of electricity. Shame on these manufactuers and I mean many not just Viking, for changing a good thing for the worse. As conscientious humans we need better, more efficent products not the other way around. Anyway, Viking was a great product just stick to standing pilot, which is the best .Or electronic ignition ,which is (spark ignition).
              PS. Live to use less and better products will result.

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              tkoga RE: OCEllen Jul 6, 2007 07:43 AM

              I have a 30" VikingGas range (ultraline in Canada), which has seen moderate home use. The problem you describe is common (sorry) to viking ranges, your oven igniters are going. We've replaced ours on average every 3 years for about $300 cdn each time !!!
              Also had problems with oven door hinges. Frustrating, my Mom's $600 electric oven never had problems like this. High end appliance = high maintanence!
              Have seen on the net description of how to change ignitors and parts to order, next time I'll try it myself.
              Hint: the ignitors glow but don't get hot enough to open the gas valve..on occasion turning on the broiler for a couple of minutes and then turning the oven on will get them to fire.Also, problem is worse if you have oven on for a few minutes and can hear gas flow, then turn it off and then back on....you can see the glow but hear NO gas flow.

              2 Replies
              1. re: tkoga
                OCEllen RE: tkoga Jul 6, 2007 01:47 PM

                Thank you so much! You've described exactly what seems to be happening! And yes, I have found that turning on the broiler seems to help get things going. This gives me specifics to address!

                1. re: tkoga
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                  loubaby RE: tkoga Jun 9, 2010 01:00 PM

                  We have an old 17 years viking double oven and one of our ovens needs a single gas valve--it doesn't open...and Viking tells us they don't make the part anymore...and we have checked with 2 main distributors and they don't stock it...any help here...we don't want to through out this oven ....any idea where we could get spare parts?

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                  uni1108 RE: OCEllen May 30, 2008 04:58 PM

                  Viking stoves use ceramic ignitors that decay over time. In addition to supplying the ignition source - the current drawn through these ignitors control the gas flow to the burner units. As the ignitors decay - the amount of current drawn is reduced - the gas valve does not receive sufficient current to open - and hence the low burner rate. - slow heat up times - etc.

                  The ignitors are easy to replace - and can be ordered from most appliance repair supply houses.

                  5 Replies
                  1. re: uni1108
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                    Docsknotinn RE: uni1108 May 31, 2008 02:31 AM

                    Exactly. There is no reason to be paying $300 (service call, Labor, part) for ignitors. Most are easilly replaced and can be ordered from any shop that carries Viking parts. If you use a repair technician you will be paying more for for the service call than the ignitor and that's not even counting labor.

                    1. re: Docsknotinn
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                      smece1972 RE: Docsknotinn Dec 15, 2009 08:30 AM

                      We bought a new house with a Viking stove. Within a few months the oven stopped working. The cleaning light would come on, but the oven would not get hot. A servicer managed to get the oven to come on, but this caused the transformer and circuit board to melt and released toxic fumes into my house while my kids were home. Viking's warranty customer service rep said she would ask the distributor if they could replace the oven at my request. This went nowhere. Now weeks later with the holidays, we have no oven and the customer service rep Karen McKay at Viking will not even answer the phone. Every call we make goes to voice mail and her supervisor is on vacation. I agree with those who say Viking is overpriced and has terrible quality control. If I could do it over, I would insist that the builder of my home replace the Viking appliances so that I wouldn't have to deal with them. This company makes Chrysler and GM look good.

                    2. re: uni1108
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                      kdluryan RE: uni1108 Jul 26, 2012 05:23 PM

                      Any pointers on where I can get details to replace the ignitors myself? Maybe a U-TUBE video or manual somewhere. Thanks.

                      1. re: kdluryan
                        ted RE: kdluryan Jul 27, 2012 09:55 AM

                        I haven't replaced them on a Viking, but I used Viking igniters as a replacement for the OEM ones on my Bluestar range. It should be pretty simple. You just take off the grates and then flip the burner/tube itself over. Unhook the wire from the igniter (it's should just pull loose).

                        The only hard part (that I experienced with my BS range) was the screw that holds the igniter in place. Mine were rusted in place. Some came out easy, some came out after a good soaking with penetrating oil, and a couple broke off and I had to use an extractor to get them out. I ended up being successful, and I replaced the screws on all of them. I would recommend getting a tube of Never Seez to apply to the threads when putting the screws back in with the new igniter.

                        Once you've done that, you just plug the wire back in and put everything back in place. FWIW, the screws on mine were steel threaded into the cast iron burner, and I suspect they look different on the Viking b/c I believe it has fabricated burners instead of the cast iron ones. Probably will be a simpler task as a result.

                        1. re: kdluryan
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                          btberlin RE: kdluryan Nov 17, 2012 06:17 PM

                          Here's some information about the igniters - and I assume you mean the oven igniters. If you google Viking parts, you will find this listing www.allvikingparts.com/. This company sells parts for the Viking ranges, etc. There are lots of complaints about the igniters. They are actually part of a safety design that keeps the oven from exploding from unburned gas if the burner tubes don't light. The igniter consists of a loop of fragile ceramic which glows when current is applied. As current flows through it, when it is yellow-hot, the current flow is sufficient to open the gas valve (which is often mistakenly blamed for the slow heat problem). The igniter glows continuously while the oven is lit, so there is no chance for gas to go through the valve without getting ignited. Unfortunately, the igniter is fragile, and in addition, as it ages, the current flowing through it is reduced so that the gas valve doesn't open all the way. That's why the oven heats slowly, even though the igniter is glowing. There is no set schedule for the replacement of the igniters, but most blogs say they last about 2-4 years in average usage. REplacement is trivially simple as stated in one of the other replies. I have read that when a repair tech does the repair, people have paid $350 for the work. That is a complete ripoff. The igniters, purchased from an authorized parts dealer, run about $35 to $40 each. Replacing two of them takes less than half an hour, so even at a labor rate of $100 per hour, the repair done by a tech should cost no more than about $130. Add some markup to the wholesale price of the igniters, even double it to $70 each, and you don't get that close to $350. The other igniters that are a constant source of trouble are the top burner igniters. My range was made around 1996, and an error in the way that some of them were wired led to the continuous sparking problem that so many people experienced. That is relatively easily corrected, but, it takes someone familiar enough with wiring and electricity to detect the error, and set it right. It can also create a serious hazard to someone cleaning around the burners, as touching one of the spark-plug electrodes can have shocking consequences even though the burner knob is "off". Don' t play with this one if you have this problem - get a reliable, smart tech with a digital voltmeter, who can discover the wiring error and fix it. If you mean, where can you get the burner igniters, try the link above. From the distributor, they come in a bag of 6 spark plugs. I'm not sure if allviking sells them individually. They are trivial to replace (again, one of the other replies explains how) and there is a new design that replaces the original ones that had a heavy wire point that the spark jumped from. The new design, which works well, has a larger metal segment that the spark jumps from.

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                        Aroundtheworldin80entrees RE: OCEllen May 19, 2010 06:58 AM

                        We own a business which requires us to use the Viking stove daily. And after thouseands of dollars in repairs, numerous service calls, 1 hour + preheating times, mini-explosions, please believe me when I say that the Viking Stove is GARBAGE. Go with a Wolf, or anyone else! The company didn't want to hear a peep after the stove went out of warranty, and trust me there were many service calls before that. They got their money. They are a priume example of TERRIBLE CUSTOMER CARE, and are one of the companies that need to go under. I use the phrase quality has a cost, but that doesn't apply to sub standard crap!

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                          chiacchio RE: OCEllen Dec 29, 2010 01:53 PM

                          Have had a viking wall oven for 12 years and it has been a total waste of money from day 1! Viking will string you along till you are out of warranty and will never deal with you again. My husband is the repairman and said the entire design of the oven is extremely poorly engineered. When you look into the vent on the wall oven - you can see into the oven......yes it will take an hour + to come to temp as all the heat goes right out the vent. He installed some pieces of metal behind the vent grate to cover this opening and hopefully contain the heat it is trying to generate so it will come to temp. He has replaced EVERY SINGLE PART once and igniters many, many times at $65. each - I have reached the end of my rope now.....broken again. DO NOT WASTE YOUR MONEY ON VIKING. Luckily my husband has saved us the service fees but we are still drowning in money spent on parts. Can anyone see this item is made to break and be unreliable....lots of money to be made in replacement parts for viking! There are many other less costly ovens available....i am going to sears outlet this time for alot less and it going to be very soon. I could not live with myself to even sell the viking on ebay, i could not do this to ANYONE! DO NOT BUY VIKING!!!!

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: chiacchio
                            Jake Dear RE: chiacchio Jun 6, 2011 09:17 AM

                            This thread describes our experience with our 36 inch Viking range. It's about 12 years old, and everything that can fail has, yearly. We've never experienced such a combination of bad performance and bad customer service -- Viking is the perfect storm.

                            One of many repairmen told us that the trouble with our range is that we actually use it daily -- he said this range is designed to be a trophy and look good, not to be used. Beware! -- Jake

                            1. re: Jake Dear
                              Jake Dear RE: Jake Dear Jun 6, 2011 02:33 PM

                              PS: My wife just called to say that our friendly Viking repairman for today's annual ignitor repair ($314.43) told us that our so-called "Viking Professional" range is about to become a safety hazzard in a couple years -- in part because of interior warping, etc., caused by the faulty design of this thing. According to some, the newer Viking designs are somewhat better -- but that's hardly good enough, and in any event given their poor customer service relations they've lost our goodwill for life -- we'll not consider another.

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                            carlaowen RE: OCEllen Jan 11, 2011 07:30 AM

                            We had a Viking double wall oven in our cooking class room for four years and had constant trouble with it holding consistent temperature, a problem that got worse over the years. Our repairman is a good one who successfully works on our other appliances, but the expensive repairs and control panel replacements didn't work. We just replaced it with a GE Profile which has given a flawless first performance. Don't waste your time or money on a Viking.

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                              tsiblis RE: OCEllen Apr 6, 2011 02:51 PM

                              We just replaced the starter (yet again) on the range we bought in 1993. When I contacted Viking to say they should alert customers that one of the parts will require being replaced as it isn't designed to last the life of the range, they refused to let me speak to someone with executive authority and kept repeating that they're sorry, but they can't warranty something for more than a year. I suggested they look at this thread and was told that they have. Talk about not caring about your brand or customer reactions. Can we do a class action suit? I just spent $500 for the starter and was told it will go out again.

                              3 Replies
                              1. re: tsiblis
                                erica RE: tsiblis Apr 7, 2011 04:04 AM

                                Have you read this?

                                http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/729659

                                Do you think Wolf really is much better? The Viking-authorized repairman (who I got to know quite well; favorite comment: "We cannot set foot in your apartment without a check from you"') told me that all the "new" stoves were "garbage."

                                1. re: erica
                                  wekick RE: erica Apr 7, 2011 08:21 AM

                                  I have a Wolf DF range and love it. They have a reputation of taking care of their customers. I have also heard good things about the Capital Culinarian, but it is pretty new, so not sure about the track record. Nothing is more discouraging than buying $$$$+++ appliances and they don't work or break easily.

                                  1. re: wekick
                                    wekick RE: wekick Sep 29, 2013 06:41 AM

                                    I have to update on my Wolf DF. The blue enamel has chipped very badly down to the bare metal. It was 4 yrs and 10 months when I found it but has been going on for awhile. I have a wall oven that I use most of the time as well. This is a known, current, ongoing Wolf issue and in the past they replaced appliances with this problem even over 4 years old but this is no longer the case. They will supply the part and a small portion of the labor but labor starts at $800 with no cap(because they don't know what they will find). They also will only warranty "the part" for one year. Many with ovens have had issues within months again. The repair company had replaced other liners in our area. I do not want to throw money down a rat hole. I will be junking my Wolf DF with a little over 4 years of light use of the oven. I did not buy an extended warranty because the dealer told me Wolf would stand behind their products. This seems to have changed.

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                                Td61 RE: OCEllen Apr 7, 2011 05:00 PM

                                Wolf DF. since 2005.
                                Works FLAWLESSLY!

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                                  Boulang RE: OCEllen Oct 21, 2012 09:10 AM

                                  OMG - I wish I had read about the problems with Viking ranges before we dished out $$$ for this piece of junk! The range that we replaced it with about 10 years ago, was purchased in 1967 so we "treated" ourselves to a Viking! Within a couple months, one of the burner knobs fell off and cracked. Contacted the store we purchased it and at that point in time they did not service Viking ranges. They sold them but didn't service them - what's up with that??? Ordered the replacement part online. Within a year and a half, the oven wouldn't light and by that time, the store was servicing Viking (tech. had to go to a "special school" to learn how) and I think we paid for his flight there as well as his hotel bill that time. The igniters for the oven have to be replaced approx. every couple of years and we've already had some wiring issues with the burners as well. One of the oven door hinges also broke and that time, we had to order the part and were without an oven for 6 weeks! The range looks pretty but don't waste your money on this hunk of junk!

                                  1. s
                                    spudone RE: OCEllen Jan 25, 2013 07:26 PM

                                    I just replaced 3 ignitors on my 20 year old viking range, and it as easy. First, buy new ignitors. I bought a replacement lighter on ebay (it was circular shape instead of serpantine). I was told the original viking ignitors stink and fail quickly. At the bottom of the range front there is a long strip a few inches tall--itis held on by 4 screws on the ends. Remove the top screw on left side and top screw on left side. THen it should tilt out. Next take apart the inside-remove racks, then remove rack holder left and right, then remove the oven bottom. Try turning on the oven with the bottom removed--if it does not turn on within say 45 seconds...you probably have a bad ignitor. (do not be fooled, a bad ignitor will still glow orange, just not bright orange needed to ignite and turn on the gas module).

                                    At the far end of the burner pipe{s} in the bottom of the oven are brackets held on with 2 screws. Put some temporary electricians tape over the vent holes in the bottom (so the screws can not all in there) and remove the 2 screws. Then slide the bracket off the end of the burner tube. Then look at the bottom front and note which alignment hole the burner peg is in--mark that hole-you will re-install it there.

                                    Now, you do not really need to remove the burner, but it is loose enough to move around. take a socket wrench and remove the 2 screws holding the ignitor metal body to the burner tube. (you probably should disconned the range from the ac wall outlet for safety). disconnect the 2 wires of the ignitor to the wiring inside of the range front. Remove old ignitor, replace new ignitor to burner tube. Reinstall bracket at end of burner tube, remove electricians tape from holes. connect up 2 wires of ignitor to 2 wires of range (i used crimp connectors, but the ignitor came with cermaic twist connectors that i could have used). Turn on the oven and make sure it lights. Then go ahead and do the other ignitor(s) the same way.

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                                      bitterbobby RE: OCEllen Sep 27, 2013 09:19 PM

                                      Well, I have a Viking Stove that I bought for our remodel about 7 years ago. its a 30 inch range with a grill. Looks great. Nothing but expensive problems. Its got problems heating to temp and then when it does, you open it to put in another batch and it never recovers the originally desired temp. Burners click incessantly despite being replaced. And had to have a hinge replaced as well. The last tech said we need a new motherboard, but after reading all the horror stories, Im going to pawn it off onto some other idiot who just wants the name and buy something that works well. Bottom line. Viking could care less. They know people will just continue buying for the look and the name. If I ever have that kind of money to spend again, Ill buy wolf. They are awsome.

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: bitterbobby
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                                        btberlin RE: bitterbobby Sep 28, 2013 06:00 AM

                                        We were at a cookbook signing a few weeks ago. We were discussing gas ranges, and the author categorized the Viking this way, "It's a hoax." Couldn't have been more correct. Buy your Wolfe.

                                      2. s
                                        shikken RE: OCEllen Sep 28, 2013 05:06 PM

                                        Most viking ovens use 2 burners/ignitors.If 1 ignitor gets weak and wont pull the necessary 3.0 -3.3 amps then its gas valve wont warp open to light that burner,so the oven is slow to heat up or recover could be that its only firing on 1 burner.Many times both burners fire at start up,but when the t stat calls for heat again,then the 1 weak ignitor wont open the gas valve to have both burners firing.The real problem with Viking is the top burners not always igniting.They have updated the spark ignitors on some models,adding a round lid above the spark ignitor to allow (in theory) better igntion.This hasnt been a good fix.The real dirty secret is the spark module.This is the device that provides spark to the top burner spark ignitors.In my 34 yrs in the business,once that Viking original module gets replaced,that is when the intermittent spark/ignition problems occur and will be that way forever.Simply,the replacement spark modules are inferior to the original

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: shikken
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                                          btberlin RE: shikken Jun 16, 2014 09:11 AM

                                          In my case, the line cord was wired wrong - hot side of the cord (black wire) was wired to a termination block under the grate supports. The termination block wire was white. Apparently they then switched the line and ground wires of the spark module so black on the module went to white on the block. Eventually, the original igniter burned out, and i replaced it, and, not having noticed the wire reversal wired it as it ought to have been - white to white, black to black. From that point onwards, the spark plugs would continue sparking for several minutes after turning on a stove burner. This went on for years, and two more modules in an effort to fix this. At some point, i got a nasty shock from one of the spark plugs, while the gas knobs were turned completely off, and i knew there was something seriously wrong. Eventually, i unplugged the stove, got my multimeter out, and did some wire tracing. The real problem was that at the line cord, there was no attempt to polarize the connection, so probably half the time it was assembled wrong, and half the time right. When it was wrong, i think that the assembler then would reverse the connections at the igniter module. The fix then, was to cut the line cord where it joined the stove wiring, and using crimp splices, connected the line cord correctly. That immediately solved the problem, and the ignition and re-ignition feature works perfectly now. If you try to do this yourself, make 100% sure you know how to do wiring, or you risk electrocuting yourself.

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                                          mmory RE: OCEllen Nov 5, 2013 02:46 PM

                                          Hi OCEllen, I am just reading your question and replies here. I am having the same exact problem. Just wondering if you ever got it fixed and how you did it. From reading below seems like the ignitors have to be changed...

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                                            btberlin RE: OCEllen Nov 5, 2013 04:01 PM

                                            If your stove is of the same vintage as mine, the solution is simple, and NOT EXPENSIVE, IF you do the work yourself. AND if you buy the parts online at a decent price. The problem results from an aging glow igniter for the oven. As implied in another reply, these igniters form a safety system that prevents oven explosions if the burners don't light properly. However, they wear out within 3 to 5 years. There is one for each burner tube, so you need two of them. In my model, the oven floor simply lifts up out of the way, and the igniters are held in place by one sheet metal screw each. From an online supplier, they should run about $45 each. I usually pick them up from a distributor, though, as the elements are very fragile, and i have had them delivered broken. I have read elsewhere that repair guys can charge about $300 to $400 to do this simple repair. Don't try it yourself if you are not familiar with wiring practices as you can injure or electrocute yourself if you forget to unplug the range from its wall outlet.

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                                              manservant RE: OCEllen Jan 15, 2014 12:25 PM

                                              Hi, I have a 12 year old viking 4 burner plus the grill and it was great until about 6 months ago. Actually this is the second time it acted up. It would not get to temp no matter how long you left it. This problem is caused by the ignitors. I bought 4 of them on ebay for 112$ and replaced the two on the bottom of the oven by myself instead of the last time when it cost me a $400 service call. The latest incident was when the ignitors went bad also the burner sparker unit went out as well. The main burner that we use most would not stop clicking so I played around with it for awhile and found out it was the sparker unit which I bought on-line for about $140. This fixed the problem but it took me some time to figure the ground plug on the original switch is in a different location than the replacement. It turns out the four plugs on the left side of the spark unit were upside down from the previous configuration so if the original was 1234 the new one was 4321.. Anyhow it was worth the time to try it myself as I figure I saved considerable money.

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                                                Douglas50 RE: OCEllen Feb 13, 2014 10:28 AM

                                                On my Viking the oven burners are too close to the burner pipe and have eaten a big hole in one. Bad design.

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: Douglas50
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                                                  Raffles RE: Douglas50 Feb 13, 2014 12:00 PM

                                                  They are easily replaced also....been there, done that...

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                                                  communista2003 RE: OCEllen Jun 16, 2014 08:23 AM

                                                  Yes, we have the same problem and can't bake anything. I also hear a popping like a mini combustion while it is baking. I suspect it is a burner/igniter that isn't lighting and the free flowing gas eventually ignites. In addition to all the knobs falling off and the top burners being too big for most small pots, Viking was designed by a bunch of amateurs.

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