Replacing Oven And Broiler Heating Elements
Electric oven and broiler elements are often even easier to test and replace than range elements. Here’s how:
Step 1: If the oven element doesn’t work, first check to see if the range is receiving power. Don’t overlook the fusing system inside the range.
Step 2: If the range is receiving power, set the timer on the range to the MANUAL position.
Step 3: If the element still doesn’t heat, turn off the power to the range and test it with a VOM set to the RX1 scale.
Step 4: Remove the screws or plugs that connect the element to the power. Remove the retaining shield, which is usually held by two screws, and remove the element from the brackets that hold it in the oven. The element is usually held in these brackets by screws.
Step 5: Clip the probes of the VOM to each element terminal. If the element is in working order, the meter will read from 15 to 30 ohms. If the meter reads higher than 30 ohms, the element is faulty and should be replaced. If the element tests all right but doesn’t work, the problem may be at the terminals. Make sure the terminals are clean and tight at the element connections.
Oven and broiler elements cannot be tested without a VOM. If you don’t have a VOM, take the element to a professional service person for testing. The problem is usually a malfunctioning element however, you aren’t risking much by replacing the element without a professional test.
Remove Wires From The Oven Heating Element
- Remove the metal spade connectors from the element terminals using your fingers or needlenose pliers. Make sure to only pull on the metal spade connectors and not the wires.
- Dont let the wires fall back into the oven cavity. Youll need them in the next step to connect to the new heating element.
Courtesy Scott Flint
How Do You Know Its Time To Replace The Oven Element
Remember how we said that the heating element is the part of the oven that glows? Well, if its not glowing, or if its not glowing uniformly throughout the element, then it might be broken. To test this out, heat your oven to 350 degrees and let it sit for ten minutes. Then open it up and take a look. If it isnt brightly lit up or is only lit up in patches, then its probably time to get it replaced.
The next way to tell if your element needs to be replaced is to give it a good inspection the next time youre down cleaning the oven floor. Check the element for signs of age, such as cracks, blisters, sagging, deformity, or other factors. If it looks like its past its prime, then get it replaced.
This one may seem obvious, but if your food isnt cooking, then thats a pretty good sign that your oven isnt heating up enough, which could mean a bad heating element. However, before blaming a frozen turkey on a bad heating element, try heating the oven with a probe thermometer inside to check the temperature. Also, be careful because while it could be the oven element, it could also be the temperature sensor probe, not to be confused with the probe thermometer. A temperature sensor probe is a component of your oven, which gauges the temperature inside and gives the oven element instructions.
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The Element Isnt Bright Orange
The heating elementyoure checking should be bright orange when fully heated . This shows its functioning normally.
The Bake Element Might Be Faulty
The main component in your electric oven responsible for heating it is the bake element. When the electrical components within the element short out or the element becomes physically broken it can stop working and your oven wont heat.
Heres how to inspect the bake element, and if necessary, replace it:
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Testing An Oven Heating Element
When you select the bake or broil function, the oven control allows voltage to travel to the bake or broil element, closing the circuit, and causing the element to heat up. There are a number of reasons a bake or broil element wont heat apart from the element itself being burned out: the element receptacle could be damaged, there could be a loose or burnt wire connection, or the element switch could be defective.
So how can you tell if the element itself is the problem? First check to see if there are any visible breaks in the element or blistering. If it does, you will need to replace it with a new one. If the element looks okay, you can test the element with a multimeter to determine if the part has continuity a continuous electrical path present in the component.
To test the element:
Can I Tell Just By Looking At My Element That It Has Failed
Sometimes visual inspection of an oven element will be enough to know that it is faulty. Any burning or bulging will be enough to confirm that a replacement oven element will need to be fitted. See the 2 example images below both oven elements have failed, however one is more obvious than the other:
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How To Replace Your Electric Oven Heating Elements
Oven cooking unevenly? Is the oven not heating enough? Noticed one of your oven heating elements doesnt turn red anymore? Youre probably right.
When your oven displays these symptoms, theres a good chance that one of your heating elements has gone. Oven pieces dont all age at the same rate, especially since each person cooks in a unique way and uses their oven differently. Your Baking Element and Broiling Element are both needed to evenly heat your oven. But different settings will activate them differently.
If youve noticed uneven heating or low heat, and one of the elements is clearly not glowing red like it used to, its time to change it out for a new one. Fortunately, This is a mechanical and straight-forward repair, provided your oven is completely cool and disconnected from its power source.
How Do I Know If My Oven Element Is Bad
2 Signs Your Electric Ovens Heating Element Is Going Bad Oven Takes Longer to Preheat. Besides noticing that your food is taking forever to cook, another sign that indicates that the heating element in your oven is going out is when it takes longer to preheat to the specified temperature. Elements Are Not Glowing a Bright Orange Color.
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Open The Screws Of The Heating Element
Now wear the gloves and one of the screws of the faulty heating element with the help of a flat head screwdriver. You will open the screws from the front and back sides to separate the heating element from the oven.
After opening the screws, you need to place them properly so they are not lost after all, you must re-fix the new heating element.
How To Test The Heating Element In Your Electric Oven
If you have found that your electric oven appears to be working as normal, but it is not producing any heat, your first instinct would be that the heating elements are not working. In the electric oven, two heating coils, one on the top and one on the bottom, heat the tub to the appropriate temperature. If one or both of these coils are malfunctioning, your oven will not produce heat. However, it could be that the actual heating element is malfunctioning or some other part is malfunctioning that caused the coils not to work. As such, you need to be able to test the heating elements so you can quickly move onto the other potential issues. However, how to test a heating element to someone unfamiliar with appliance repair is not immediately apparent, but not difficult to do.
The first step to any oven repair is to turn off the electricity to the oven either via the circuit breaker or by unplugging it. Once done, you will need to detach the elements. The bottom heating element may need to have a metal cover lifted up to reveal it. On both heating elements, there will be a mounting plate located on the back of the oven tub. You simply need to unscrew that plate and pull the heating element forward. Once done, you will need to disconnect the wire harness that powers the heating element. Once disconnected, be careful not to let the wires slip back into the hole. They can be fished out, but it is a difficulty that can be avoided.
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Visible Damage On The Heating Element
This one may seem obvious to some people. One of the most vital signs that a heating element is bad is if it has significant damage.
Any visible cracks on the surface, some significant burns, or bends on the heating element can be an indicator that it is bad and a positive sign that you may need to change it.
To make a more thorough assessment of the heating coils health, you may need to remove it from the oven and inspect it closely. For this step, you may need a qualified technician to avoid damaging the oven or hurting yourself.
How To Replace An Oven Element
Whether your oven is built in or freestanding, single or double, the first step of the repair is to remove the back-plate from inside the fan oven. Elements used to heat fan-assisted ovens are, in most cases, located at the rear, behind the back plate. Back plates vary in how they are fixed in place, but normally they are held by between 2 and 6 screws.
Once the back plate has been removed the fan oven element and the fan blades will be seen. In many cases cooker elements will show visual signs of failure There may be signs of burning, blowing, bulging, or splitting, in a particular area of the fan oven element. This is confirmation that your oven element need replacing. Be aware, however, that in many cases there will be no obvious visual signs of failure whatsoever. With the element exposed It will also now become apparent if you need to gain access to the rear of the oven to remove the element.
If the element has been secured by screws from the rear of the cooker then the oven will need to be removed from it’s housing in order to remove the back cover. The screws holding the cooker element in place can then be removed easily.
Always ensure that you make a note of which way round the wires are connected to the oven element before you remove them. We recommend that you replace your element with the genuine part which are available direct from us – view all oven elements.
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When To Replace An Oven Heating Element
Youll likely notice when its time to replace your ovens heating element. Here are the telltale signs that you have a broken or worn-out heating element:
- Food is only partially cooking, or not cooking at all.
- The heating element is not producing any heat.
- The heating element doesnt glow bright orange when the oven is in use.
- There are obvious signs of damage to the heating element including cracks, burns, or blistering.
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The Thermostat Might Be Faulty
Some electric ovens have a thermostat with a sensor attached that monitors the oven temperature. When the thermostat believes the oven is at the right temperature, it tells the control board to reduce the voltage being sent to the element. If the thermostat becomes faulty, your oven might not heat.
Heres how to inspect, and if necessary, replace the thermostat:
Test For Electrical Current
Gently pull the heating element and mounting bracket away from the back wall of the oven. Slide the element toward you a couple of inches, so you can see the wires connected to the element. The wires may be surrounded by insulation, which may pull out a bitdon’t worry, this is normal.
Confirm that the circuit power is off by touching the probe of a non-contact voltage tester to each of the wire ends. There should be no voltage present. If the tester detects any voltage, you have not shut off the correct breaker. Return to the electrical service panel to turn off the correct breaker, then test the oven wires again.
The Spruce / Kevin Norris
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Diagnosing A Faulty Bake Element
If it is the often hidden bake element of an oven that has gone faulty, you will likely notice it pretty fast. This is the workhorse of your oven when it comes to heat. When it is not working, it will feel significantly cooler inside the oven tub and may take ages for food to cook.
As you cannot see a bake element in most newer designs, a visual inspection wont be easily done. However, after a preheat cycle is done, you will be able to feel if it is working. If you do want to do a visual inspection, the metal plate covering the bake element can be removed and the preheat can be run. Similar to a faulty broil element, a working bake element will have even coloring and no patches of discoloration.
There is a chance it could be electrically open and a simple continuity test is required when either element has been removed from the oven completely.
Signs Your Ovens Heating Element Is Broken
However, replacing the ovens heatingelement might be all thats needed.
Replacement heating elements cost as little as $25, in addition to a possibleinstallation charge.
But first, you needto know whether the heating element is causing the problem or if the entireappliance should be replaced.
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Disconnect The Heating Element
Carefully disconnect each spade wire connector from the heating element. You may be able to pull them off with your fingers, or you can use needle-nose pliers. Pull only on the metal connector never pull on the wire itself, or you risk damaging it or separating it from its connector.
Make sure each wire cannot slip back into the oven housing before releasing your hold on it. If necessary, temporarily tape the wires to the oven wall with electrical tape or masking tape.
Remove the old heating element from the oven.
The Spruce / Kevin Norris