My reply of Dec27 on OvenFrank88's problem with his Frigidaire range
appears not to have gotten through, so here's another.
Had the same problem recently with my 5-yr old Kenmore range, which
also uses the Spitfire Controls model 318183900 electronic oven
control. Since no power was getting to the bake and broil elements, and
all other functions including the display were still operating
normally, I figured that something was wrong with the 20A relay (the
largest of the 3 located at the end of the circuit board) that switches
both the bake and broil elements. Closer inspection revealed that the
trace on the solder side of the circuit board connecting this relay to
its associated spade terminal had probably overheated and blown open,
because the relay itself was still operating in reponse to the control
voltage. I thought I'd try a repair because the cost of replacing the
whole control would be $314 for the part alone (Sears has one in
stock). Now these controls are not actually repairable; they're sealed,
so you can't get at the solder side of the circuit board for one thing.
I ended up cutting off the top and one side of the relay's plastic
housing, exposing the relay, and soldering a couple of stranded copper
wires between it and the spade terminal. The oven now heats normally.
I had a similar problem with my dishwasher touchpad control 3 years
ago. The cost of replacing that control was going to be about half the
cost of a new dishwasher! It only needed resoldering of a contact of
one of the power relays that sits on a circuit board.
I think all such types of electronic controls have the same
failure-prone weakness; in their efforts to keep appliances compact,
stylish, and to reduce manufacturing costs (and maybe also help the
parts and repair business), they've included the power handling relays
- the ones that switch the bake and broil elements for example- with
the electronic control. Premature failures will continue to occur until
these relays are installed off the board. Reliability of the control
may then begin to approach the reliability of the relays themselves,
which is about 100,000 electrical operations, and that of the other
solid state components. Bill E., Toronto, ON