Why Does My Electric Oven Smell Like Gas? Causes & Fixes!

Updated: | Author: Brad Javernick | Affiliate links may be present.

The smell of gas is always a cause for concern when it’s unexpected. Gas leaks are a serious problem that needs to be addressed immediately.

Sometimes, odd gas-like smells might come from unexpected sources and may not actually indicate a gas leak.

If your electric oven smells like gas, this could be caused by faulty wiring or a damaged heating element. Neglecting to properly unpack the oven and leaving some packaging material behind can also lead to unusual smells. It’s also possible that you have a gas leak but it’s not coming from the oven itself.

Faulty Wiring

Faulty wiring in your electric oven can result in unpleasant smells that may resemble gas in some cases. If your electric stove smells like gas, you should completely disconnect it from the power supply and verify that its wiring is in order.

This can be difficult for a layperson without any experience with electrical work. It’s recommended to hire a specialist. They will be able to identify any issues with your oven’s wiring or at least let you know that this is not the problem with complete certainty.

Damaged Heating Element

On a related note, a damaged heating element can also make an electric oven smell like gas when preheating in some models. Replacing the heating element is not very difficult with some models, but that’s not a universal rule. In some cases, it’s also a job that calls for professional help.

As a rule of thumb, most heating elements used in electric ovens last for about five years before giving out. If it’s been a few years since you’ve last replaced the heating element in your own oven, it may be time to shop around for a replacement.

Only use original replacement parts. Or at least manufacturer-approved ones – there might be some variety on the market, depending on which model you’re using. Purchasing a cheap electric oven part from an unknown manufacturer is a fast way to set your house on fire.

Packaging Material

Did you forget some packaging material when you were unpacking your oven? If the oven is still new, that could be a likely source of any unusual smells it produces when heating up.

This should be dealt with immediately because it could leave a permanent residue inside your oven. Not only will it smell bad, but it could also be harmful to your health. Plastic produces various toxic chemicals when it’s burned, and mixing those into your food is the last thing you want to do.

Unfortunately, if melted plastic has already made its way to the oven’s heating element, this may require an expensive repair. Be careful when unpacking your oven after purchasing it and make sure that you completely remove all packaging material.

Unrelated Gas Leak

Can you have a gas leak with an electric stove? No, but it’s possible that you have one close to it. If none of the above methods lead to any results, you might be dealing with an actual gas leak.

In that case, keep the oven disconnected and call your gas provider. The good news is that you’re probably relatively safe – if nothing has caught on fire or exploded yet, it likely indicates a small leak.

But even the smallest leak can be dangerous if given enough time, as it can lead to the accumulation of gas in some parts of your kitchen. Then, all it takes is a flame or a spark.

If you suspect that you might be dealing with a real gas leak, it’s best to avoid using your kitchen at all until the situation has been investigated by a competent specialist.

Lack of Cleaning

Last but not least, it’s possible that your oven simply needs some extra cleaning. If it’s been a while since you last gave it a thorough scrubbing, it’s possible that oils and other substances have started to accumulate in various spots.

While those are not dangerous by default, they could eventually become problematic if they grow large enough. In addition, they will emit unpleasant smells that will mix with your food and ruin its taste.

Simply turn off all power to your oven, open it up, and give it a thorough cleaning using aggressive cleaning agents. Read the instructions of your model to see if there’s some tricky part that you’ve been neglecting.

Every oven is different when it comes to keeping it clean, so don’t assume that you’re already familiar with the best practices for your model.

Wrap Up

Even if the problem turns out to be unrelated to a real gas leak, any unpleasant or suspicious smells coming from your electric oven should be investigated immediately.

In many cases, it will turn out to be nothing serious. But it only takes one situation involving a real problem for things to go awry very fast.

Avatar photo

About Brad Javernick

Brad is a licensed home inspector and the editor of Home Oomph. He's a massive DIYer, and loves to take on new home renovation projects!

Leave a Comment