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OT- Fixing an electric Oven

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  • OT- Fixing an electric Oven

    I have an electric oven that just stopped heating. Turning the knob will only cause the fan to go on (I can hear the fan running) but the heating elements on top and bottom of the oven barely get warm regardless of the temp setting. Looking inside there is only one rod/probe attached to the far wall of the oven. I am very ignorant when it comes to electronics. Is there anything alse behind the box if I took it out of the kitchen cabinet and opened the back of the oven? is this a fixable or time to buy new oven? Thanks for any ideas. DavidH.

  • #2
    Re:Oven problems

    I am no electrician but I have worked on a few of these things in the past. If you get the fan running and the heating elements getting slightly warm you can rule out the elements, fan, and on/off switch. I would take a guess that you have a thermostat problem. Most probably the thermocouple has gone south on you. You might be able to check it with an ohm meter (disconnected from the power of course) and see if you get a change in resistance when you change the dial setting. An appliance parts place should have an exact replacement part for a lot less than a new oven.

    good luck with it
    Jim (KB4IVH)

    Only fools abuse their tools.


    • #3
      If you are not very familiar with electricity, I certainly can't recommend that your first attempt at a repair be an oven that could burn your house down if you don't get it right. If it is more than 10 years old. I would recommend that you get a new one.

      It could be the wiring, the controls, and internal fuse, or maybe just a burned out heating element.

      Either get a friend who knows what he is doing to help you out, or buy a new one. No sense taking chances. The voltage you are dealing with is a lot stiffer than used in a flashlight and could kill you.


      • #4
        Originally posted by biometrics
        If you are not very familiar with electricity, I certainly can't recommend that your first attempt at a repair be an oven that could burn your house down if you don't get it right.
        Not a bad idea.

        I would take a guess that there is an issue with the incoming connections or that one leg, after it has entered the oven, has an issue with a connection. That incoming connection is important. The crimped lugs on there are crimped on tight and for good reason.

        I doubt that you will be able to see the issue inside the oven itself. You will need to open it up at the controls. As noted above, get a buddy that knows how to read a schematic to open it up and start testing. He should be able to find the issue.

        Civil engineers build targets, Mechanical engineers build weapons.


        • #5
          Check your power distribution box for tripped circuit breakers/ blown fuses.For an electric stove, there should be two. One may have tripped/blown.


          • #6
            2X the running on one fuse. If its not screw in fuses maybe someone installed individual breakers without ganging them. Most individual breakers have holes in the lever so if they are paired for 220 the can be tied together so if one trips they both trip. If your stove is old enough there will be fuses on it as well, usually the top will fold down above the controls.
            Cheers, bob


            • #7
              In a reasonably modern house with circuit breakers, a two-pole breaker with the two sides physically tied must be used. If one side goes, the other will go with it.

              That doesn't mean, however, that there could not be a one-sided problem *after* the mains. These are fairly high current draw items and they like to heat and cool a bad connection at any point. Heating means expansion and cooling means contraction, so a bad connection somewhere can mean a self-loosening connection over time. Fires can even be started this way, so it's a good chance to look all this over as a preliminary step anyway.

              I agree about safety in general, but if everything that involved power was left to someone else, we would run out of "someone elses"

              I too would first suspect a thermostat. I think it's not really a thermocouple in an electric range. I would also tell you that in troubleshooting a problem I had with my gas range, I found that there are quite a few sites with appliance troubleshooting Q&A on the web.

              I would also first find the diagram that is either in the manual or likely adhered to the back of the range or a rear panel. It may also be folded up inside the control "head" (with all the knobs and controls). You may be very quickly able to logic out a way that the fan can come on and the heating elements get warm....but never hot.

              Paul Carpenter
              Mapleton, IL


              • #8
                around here we have a wizzard in the after market parts business that will tell you where to and what to check and also what could be the problem.

                call your local after market place. . . . not sears home central but really an appliance parts shop.

                they are worth their weight in gold. . . .

                the other davidh


                • #9
                  Paul is 100% correct on the breakers and that is the way it should be. Big Should. But not always the case, especially for an electrician going over budget or for sake of convenience. Seen it to many times. Not sure I agree on the thermostat at this time. Also agree 100% on the thermocouple, those are usually used for flame fired appliances (no heat no fuel). Don’t forget most of the controls/timers (circuitry and oven light) and fan will be running on 120v. Possibly the active 120 that has not tripped. Start your checks at the basic root causes before you spend tool/machinery money on the pro’s and of course do it within your comfortable range of abilities to avoid any personal injury Blah blah.
                  Cheers, Bob