What Is an Ignition Issue?

Ignition Failure occurs when the ignition module fails to sense a flame within 4 seconds of the “call for heat” signal and locks out. When this happens, the Module will send a 24 VAC signal through the Interface Board’s alarm circuit to the Controller.

Controller Indicators

The controller will indicate there is an ignition issue, but will look different on the various controllers. On a Solid-State Controller, both the Heat and Trouble lights illuminate, as shown.

A digital controller displays HELP, and a Computer Magic controller indicates ignition errors by lighting the basket timer.

On an M2000 controller, the words IGNITION and FAILURE alternate in the display.

3 Reasons the Ignition Fails

The top reasons for Ignition Failure are:

    • Gas or Electric Power Supply Problems
    • Electronic Circuit Interruption
    • Gas Valve Failure

#1: Gas/Electric Power Supply Problems

The fryer needs both gas and electricity to function, so when one or both aren’t available, the fryer will not work.

What’s the Main Indicator of a Gas/Electric Supply Problem?

The main indicator of a gas or electric supply problem is that an entire battery of fryers fails to light or there are no indicator lights illuminated on the individual fryer experiencing the problem.

Troubleshooting Gas/Electric Supply Issues

Step 1: Verify the gas line’s quick-disconnect fitting is properly connected, and that the main gas supply valve is open.

Step 2: Make sure the fryer is plugged in and the circuit breaker for the fryer electrical supply is not tripped.

#2: Electronic Circuit Interruption

If gas and electrical power are being supplied to the fryer, the next most likely cause of ignition failure is an interruption in the 24 VAC circuit.

Components in the VAC Circuit

    • 24V secondary of the Transformer
    • Interface Board
    • Heat Relay
    • Ignition Module
    • High Limit Thermostat
    • Gas Valve

Troubleshooting Steps

Step 1: Make sure the controller is turned ON and calling for heat.

Step 2: If the fryer is connected to a filter system, there’s a microswitch mounted to the drain valve that will prevent 24VAC from going to the Gas Valve if it’s open.

If gas and electrical power are being supplied to the fryer, the next most likely cause of ignition failure is an interruption in the 24 VAC circuit.

Components in the VAC Circuit

    • 24V secondary of the Transformer
    • Interface Board
    • Heat Relay
    • Ignition Module
    • High Limit Thermostat
    • Gas Valve

Troubleshooting Steps

Step 1: Make sure the controller is turned ON and calling for heat.

Step 2: If the fryer is connected to a filter system, there’s a microswitch mounted to the drain valve that will prevent 24VAC from going to the Gas Valve if it’s open.

Sometimes this drain switch might be faulty or out of adjustment so that even if the drain valve is closed, it may not actuate the switch. Make sure this switch is closed and 24V is going to the gas valve.

Step 3:  Access the interface board by removing the front bezel and removing the screws holding the controller. Then swing the controller down but leave it connected. Click on the controller to make this happen. If LED D3 is lit, it indicates the transformer’s 24V secondary is working. Skip to Step 7.

Step 4: If LED three isn’t lit, set your multimeter on AC volts and on the J3 test points, check from pin 8 to a known ground. You should read 24 Volts. 

Step 5: If you do not read 24 volts, access the transformer and check it directly.

On units made for the European Market or some other countries, there is an Air switch that verifies that the combustion Blower is supplying air to the burner.

If the blower is not turning or if this switch is not closing for any other reason, 24 Volts will not be supplied to the interface board.

Step 6: Next, check the F2 fuse on the interface board. If you have a unit where the fuses are on the Ignition Modules, check those. If the transformer, air switch, and fuse check out and LED “D”–3 is still not lit, then you have a faulty interface board.

Step 7:  If LED D3 is lit, you should be getting 24 volts to one pole of the heat relay. When the controller calls for heat, a 12 VDC signal is sent to the coil of this relay. When the relay closes, LED D4 will light up, indicating that power is going to the ignition module.

If it does not, the heat relay or interface board could be faulty. If this is not the problem, the module should simultaneously send high voltage of about 25,000 V to the igniter and 24 volts to the Gas Valve circuit. This will light up LED “D”-5 on fryers with only one module.

If it does not, the heat relay or interface board could be faulty. If this is not the problem, the module should simultaneously send high voltage of about 25,000 V to the igniter and 24 volts to the Gas Valve circuit. This will light up LED “D”-5 on fryers with only one module. It should read closed. If it’s open and the fryer is not hot, you have a faulty high limit.

Step 9: Reattach the gas valve wire. If everything is good to this point, you will need to troubleshoot the following:

    • Gas Valve
    • Igniter
    • Combustion Blower
    • Ignition Modules
    • Wires and cables

#3: Gas Valve Issues

What are the Main Causes of Gas Valve Issues?

    • Faulty Main Coil
    • Gas Pressure issues

Components in the VAC Circuit

Step 1: If you’re getting 24 volts to the gas valve, check the valve’s coil. Disconnect the wires to the gas valve. With your meter set on the Diode scale, take a reading between the two terminals.

    • Honeywell valve = resistance of 400 to 650 Ohms
    • Robertshaw valve = 71-75 Ohms

Anything outside of this range indicates a faulty valve.

Step 2: Check the pressure regulator, which lowers the incoming gas pressure to the required operating pressure. If the incoming pressure isn’t correct, then you have a gas supply issue.

    • Honeywell valve = resistance of 400 to 650 Ohms
    • Robertshaw valve = 71-75 Ohms

Anything outside of this range indicates a faulty valve.

Step 2: Check the pressure regulator, which lowers the incoming gas pressure to the required operating pressure. If the incoming pressure isn’t correct, then you have a gas supply issue.

Step 3: If the incoming gas supply OK, but the operating or manifold pressure is wrong, try to adjust the gas pressure. If the manifold pressure can’t be adjusted, then the gas valve is faulty and needs to be replaced.

To learn more, subscribe to the Ignitor Labs Membership to check out our full Interactive Training Course on the Frymaster Pro Series Fryers H50, H52, and H55.