I've been reassembling a friend's old BBQ and one of the three burners seems to be leaking gas where it connects with the gas intake. When I turn it on, there's a flame and I can see/smell something burning inside, so I turn it off immediately. Anyone know why, and how to fix?

Here's what it looks like in action https://i.sstatic.net/VgOlN.jpg, and here's the inside https://i.sstatic.net/lA6UG.jpg

  • Questions about equipment repair are off topic here
    – Rob
    Commented Apr 6, 2020 at 10:07
  • I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because questions about equipment installation and repair are off topic.
    – Divi
    Commented Apr 7, 2020 at 2:09
  • would you mind suggesting a better place for such questions?
    – Laurier
    Commented Apr 7, 2020 at 18:31

3 Answers 3


It looks like the burner tube is not sliding back far enough onto the gas outlet on the control valve. Then some gas leaks there instead of going into the burner. All the gas should go into the burner tube. The gas will aspirate air into the the tube, mix with the air and give blue flames at the little holes. If there is orange flame, the adjusting collar on the tube needs to be rotated. Your problem should be a simple fix of sliding the burner tube tight against the valve. It is a pretty forgiving system: I have a 20 year old grill that is on about the 5th set of burners, not made for the specific grill and have not had a problem. (I use the grill a lot). At the end of season I buy whatever burners are on sale, they have all worked so far.

  • To be sure I understand, you mean I simply need to tighten the metal tube against the valve? I took the whole thing apart and switched the sides + tightened properly, but it didn't seem better. I took another shot of it from under, it looks to me like the leak it's happening further, after the valve connects? imgur.com/nZ5kqwM
    – Laurier
    Commented Apr 5, 2020 at 20:37
  • 1
    It doesn't tighten , it just slides against the control valve . There is probably a small ( 1/4 ") brass nozzle protruding from the valve ; it goes into the opening in the end of the stainless burner tube. The gas is shooting out the brass nozzle and may go an inch + before it mixes with air and burns. Commented Apr 5, 2020 at 23:24
  • In the still photo you can see the wire to the igniter, and next to it is a wide open hole that leads to the burner tube. Something giving off gas should be stuffed into that hole. Probably that white nozzle looking thing. Instead it is giving off gas into the space behind there.
    – Willk
    Commented Apr 6, 2020 at 2:42
  • Ah – I understand what you mean. Thanks, I will try rotating the adjusting collar on the tube.
    – Laurier
    Commented Apr 7, 2020 at 0:07

This is obviously not safe. It looks like there is a leak in your valve. I'd have to see photos of the valve taken apart, but this could be caused by rust or just not putting it all together properly. In addition to water and water vapor (and plain old oxygen), heat will cause oxidation of the metal, so you may need to replace the valve assembly.

If it is simply a fitting that's leaking, you can try using pipe joint compound to properly fit those pieces together with no leaks. See also Blacksmith's answer as it seems like he's onto something that I'm not seeing in the photo.

Do you smell gas when the burner is turned off? If so, a little soapy water may tell you where the leak is.

If you want to supply additional photos I may be able to offer more advice.

  • Thanks! re: Do you smell gas when the burner is turned off? If so, a little soapy water may tell you where the leak is. – I don't, and I tried soapy water but to no avail. I took the whole thing apart, switched it sides and tightened it properly, but it didn't help. I'm considering switching the whole valve. I took another shot from under, it seems to me like the leak is happening downstream from the valve junction, closer to the burner entry? imgur.com/nZ5kqwM
    – Laurier
    Commented Apr 5, 2020 at 20:39
  • Thank you — that's a much better video. If you swap the parts with another burner I assume the problem moves to the other burner. If so, it's probably a bad part.
    – myklbykl
    Commented Apr 5, 2020 at 20:42

Yellow flames mean that the gas it not mixed with enough air before combusting. If I understand correctly, there is a nozzle that injects gas into the tube-like burner. Around the nozzle there is probably a small gap to allow the gas to mix with air (like the bunsen burner you may remember from high school).

When the flame ignites in the video (around 5 seconds in), you only see blue flames along the first few centimeters of the burner. I suspect it might be clogged at that point, causing the gas to flow back out of the air intake.

  • Just posting a possible solution here... I don't mind a downvote, but please explain why. Commented Apr 7, 2020 at 7:12

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