NOT TOO LATE TO GET YOUR RANGE READY FOR
your oven stops heating, here are a few
suggestions to help you get cooking again.
If your gas oven won't heat, the first
thing you should check is the bake igniter.
When the igniter gets weak or burns out,
your oven won't heat. The igniter is a small,
round or rectangular device that's about
one inch wide and four to eight inches long,
and it's located near the oven burner. When
you turn on your oven, if the igniter is
working properly, gas is released into the
burner. The burner has many small holes
on its side to allow gas, when ignited,
to form a long low flame. If the igniter
is broken or weak, it won't get hot enough
to allow the safety valve to open and ignite
the gas. If you suspect this is your problem,
find the correct replacement igniter for
your oven with the
When your electric oven won't
heat, a faulty bake element is usually to
blame. The bake element is a black tube that
winds around the bottom of the oven. When
your oven is working correctly, the bake element
glows red. Electric bake elements usually
last for several years. If your element is
not glowing red when you turn on the oven,
replacing it will most likely fix your problem.
To find the correct replacement element for
your oven, use the
you use your oven's self-cleaning feature?
We answer questions everyday
from customers who have problems with the
self-cleaning feature on their ovens. Here
are some tips for self-cleaning your oven
safely and effectively.
- It costs about $1.00 in electricity, or
$.75 in gas to run the self-cleaning cycle
on the average oven.
- Don't wait until the inside of the oven
looks like the surface of Mars before running
the self-cleaning cycle. There will be far
less fumes from cleaning an oven that is not
thickly coated with splatter and food particles.
- Be sure to open a window in the kitchen
or run an externally vented exhaust fan while
self-cleaning. The process produces lots of
smoke and fumes. And, gas ovens will produce
elevated levels of carbon monoxide during
- Don't run the self-cleaning cycle less than
one week before a major cooking event, such
as a big holiday meal. Ovens often fail during
and just after a self-cleaning cycle. You
may need time for a repair if this happens
- Never use oven cleaner with a self-cleaning
oven, even if the self-cleaning feature is
broken. Self-cleaning oven surfaces are not
designed to work with oven cleaning solutions.
- Pick up any large pieces of food off the
bottom of the oven before running the self-cleaning
cycle. This will reduce the amount of smoke
- Be sure to follow the manufacturer's instructions
on how to use the self-cleaning feature, and
never try to open the oven door during the
cycle or before the "locked" light goes off.
This is the most common cause for a self-cleaning
- The interior of the oven gets up to 1,000
degrees Fahrenheit during self-cleaning. This
high temperature literally incinerates all
food particles and splatter. All that's left
afterward is the ash from the incineration
do those error "F codes" on your range mean?
newer ranges have built-in diagnostics to
help troubleshoot problems. The diagnostics
include special codes, often called "F codes,"
that appear in the digital display when the
system detects a problem. Codes vary in meaning
from one manufacturer to another. If your
range's digital display is showing an F code,
consult your owner's manual for a description
of the problem. Or check out our list of manufacturer
F codes and their descriptions here.
at your house this year? Consider repairing
that broken burner so your range can work
at peak efficiency. Here's how:
your gas burner won't light, it's probably
due to dirt or grease splatters obstructing
the flow of gas. A gas burner has small holes
around its perimeter that allow gas to flow
through. If the holes are blocked, and not
enough gas gets through, your burner won't
light. This is an easy repair. Just use a
thin wire to clean out those holes around
the burner, and you'll be cookin' in no time.
Electric burners, also called heating elements, do
eventually burn out or work intermittently.
Sometimes, when an element burns out, you
can see blisters and bubbles in the coil.
When your heating element burns out, you have
to replace it. It's not repairable. And, the
switch that controls the burner, called the
infinite switch, will often fail at the same
time. If that happens, a new burner won't
work. You have to replace the infinite switch
too. If the element is working intermittently,
you'll most likely need to replace the receptacle
that the element plugs into. Try the
to find the right heating element, infinite
switch and/or element receptacle for your
For more information about how to troubleshoot,
maintain and repair your range/stove/oven,
an electronic meat thermometer for safe holiday
President Chris Hall recommends Polder's high-quality,
automatic, timer/electronic meat thermometer
to ensure safe cooking. "We use this very
thermometer in my house all the time," said
Hall. "It takes the guesswork out of cooking
turkey, ham and other meats and also works
great for testing soup and stew temperatures.
I highly recommend it, especially for the
upcoming holiday cooking season." You can
the cleaning ability of your dishwasher:
If your dishes
aren't getting as clean as they used to, there's
probably not enough water getting into the
machine. This is caused by a broken or worn-out
water inlet valve, which needs replacing every
few years, depending on water conditions.
Many do-it-yourselfers can make this repair
with just a few common tools. To find the
right water inlet valve for your dishwasher, use
and dishwasher accessories:
our range/stove/oven and dishwasher accessories
for many other useful products.
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of pre-rinsing dishes under a faucet uses
up to 15 gallons of water. A normal dishwashing
cycle uses between seven and 10 gallons.
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