Understanding Your Oven
Knowing how your appliances work and recognizing signs of problems before they turn into real problems is a great way to make sure your appliances last and function properly. The best room in the house, for people that cook or bake, is definitely the kitchen. If you grew up with a mom or dad that loved to cook or bake, you know the delicious smells and the happy talks that can happen in this delightful room.
One of your best tools in preparing delicious and wonderful home-cooked meals is the oven. Have you ever wondered how exactly your oven transforms your meals into the wonderful dishes that come out of it? Conventional ovens are really quite simple in their operation and design. In a basic explanation, ovens heat the air in the enclosed chamber using a power source (such as electricity, gas, charcoal, etc.) to the appropriate degrees for what you are baking and the setting you placed it on, and then the heat from the air is transferred to the food you placed inside. All the heat the food absorbs cooks or bakes the food, making it into the ready-to-eat dish that comes out! Pretty simple, right?
The most basic problems you are going to run into when using a conventional oven include no power, element shortages, or temperature gage problems. If you are struggling because your oven doesn’t seem to have any power, most likely that is exactly the problem. Start by checking the fuse box and flipping the switch if the fuse was tripped. Pull out your oven and make sure the power cord didn’t come unplugged and that it is fully plugged in. If these simple fixes don’t show results, call a technician to help you solve the problem.
The elements in an electric oven are the squiggly wires on the top and bottom of the oven. The bottom element is used the most and will typically need replaced prior to the top one needing it. If you turn the oven on and you notice that the element is not uniformly colored and hot, it is time to have the element replaced. You can do this yourself if you are familiar with the process or call in a professional to help you out.
Thermostat problems are most simple to find if you purchase a freestanding oven thermometer and put it in the oven. Heat the oven to different degrees, such as 200, 300, and 400, degrees. Check the thermometer at each level. If it reads more than 50 degrees off at each level you need to have the thermostat checked by a professional repairman.