When do you call for appliance repair services? Can you fix it yourself? These questions are a dilemma for most people. This is the first in a series of articles discussing when you definitely need to call in a repair service. Our first topic is stoves.
Stoves are either gas or electric. Let’s start with gas stoves. Common issues with this type of stove:
Burners start but don’t light. Most often caused by the holes for the gas being clogged by food or oil. Spills should be cleaned as soon as possible to prevent this type of issue. This is probably the most common complaint with gas stoves.
Try fixing it yourself first by cleaning out the holes. I’d suggest using a needle not anything that could break in the hole such as a toothpick. Once unclogged, clean the area with non-abrasive soap and water. Don’t use a heavy cleanser such as a sink scrub. This could cause the clog to return.
The oven isn’t heating correctly. If the oven is gas, it is probably the glow-bar igniter. You can see the glow of the igniter when you turn on the oven. If you see the glow and have no heat than your igniter needs to be replaced. Do not attempt this repair yourself. Since you are dealing with gas, you need a professional appliance repair service to handle this repair. The pro will verify that all of your gas lines are not leaking and prevent you from having a major catastrophe later caused by a gas leak.
Electric stoves that aren’t heating may need to have a new bake element installed. This is the wire on the bottom of the oven that turns a deep red when working correctly. If you see a dark burn spot on the element or if the element breaks apart then you definitely need a new heating element. In most cases you can fix this yourself for minimal cost. Make sure that you unplug the stove or turn off the circuit breakers before working on the oven. You don’t want to get shocked when replacing the part.
If the element is working, the issue could be the thermostat or the selector switch. Both of these parts require having your professional appliance repair service to fix. Do not try to do it yourself.
Many newer stoves have glass tops. Occasionally, the glass top can break. This part is very expensive. You might want to consider having a pro fix it for you. They can do it faster and can easily repair the stove.
In any event, the first thing that you want to do before repairing your stove is to look up the warranty. Do not attempt any repair yourself if the warranty is still in effect. To do so may invalidate the warranty. Let the manufacturer absorb as much of the repair cost as possible so you don’t have to foot the bill.