How does my new oven work? How did my old oven work?
Basically, how does the oven work on an electric stove that has no
electronics. I think it's been the same for the last 50 years.
That is, when I put the Bake/Broil swich on Bake, and the temp on
Broil, will the heat stay on all the time and the oven just get hotter
and hotter, or is there a limit?
Conversely when I put the Bake/Broil swich on Broil, and *don't* put
the temp on Broil (say I leave it on 350), does the broiler element go
on and off, according to the temp, or is the fact that you do as they
say and keep the oven door open 3 inches enough to keep the thermostat
from getting hot enough to turn the element off temporarily?
When I do put the broil element on broil, does it stay on
continuously, no interruption?
Since there is only one thermostat, even though it has separate
connections for bake and broil, that's why I'm asking.
I should have asked this question 25 years ago, but I didn't have
Y'know, some of your questions are pretty good. Others are, well, kind
of idiotic, like this one.
Just think about it for a minute next time before posting. "Broil" does
*not* mean "infinitely hot", right?
The phrase "jump the shark" itself jumped the shark about a decade ago.
I don;t know how stoves work in the UK, but here in the USA,
I don't think it's true that new stoves have much bigger heating
elements. I replaced a 25 year old oven with a new Kitchenaid
one and it takes LONGER to come up to temp than the old one
did. If new ones had significantly larger heating elements, it
would present a major problem. It would require more current,
and to retrofit a larger cable and breaker would be a real
headache and sales limiter.
Also, the old ovens had a bottom heating element that was
exposed. On my new one, the bottom element is under the
metal floor, which one would think would limit how intense
the heating element could be.
Regarding the original question, I understand what he means.
But I think even with older ovens, setting the temp to broil did
not mean the thermostat would never open. I understood it
to mean that it was set to the max allowed by the thermostat,
even though not marketd specifically on the dial at that point.
If you exceeded that temp, maybe ~550, then whatever was
on, oven, broiler, etc would shut off.
With my new oven you can't leave the door open when broiling.
If you open the door, the element shuts off.
On Sun, 13 Mar 2011 04:33:16 -0700 (PDT), " email@example.com"
I saw Whirlpool stove/ovens like that. In that case you were supposed
to put water in the bottom which would fill the oven with steam to
make cleaning easy. Did the old self-cleaning ovens use too much
electricity, or were thought unsafe (just guessing), or is this new
for the sake of being new?
This started with my understanding of gas ovens, which I'm pretty sure
never have less than a high flame when broiling.
I assumed 25 years ago that electric was the same way, but I shouldn't
have and that's why I'm asking.
Wow. That's almost backwards from mine. With my old oven, 32 years
old** the door was *supposed* to be open, and with this "new" oven,
about 20 years old (also harvest gold), the manual says to leave the
door open except when broiling chicken. "The door stays open by
itself, yet the proper temperature is maintained in the oven."
But it doesn't say why. With the old one I thought if the door were
closed, the oven got too hot and the broiler turned off, but with this
one, it says no.
**I think, not certain, I caused the fire in the old one by trying to
get hotter broiling, by putting the broiler tray on top of something
(maybe an upside down cookie tray) and closer to the element. It was
the first time I tried that and it was caused by grease in the broiler
tray that got to hot.
Some of the new ovens require the door to be closed when broiling and there
is a limit to the heat. Of course, the people that have those ovens
complain they do not broil as well as older models.
Having only one element running, the temperature is self limiting as it does
not have the capacity to overheat.
Every oven I have used while in "broil" mode, kept power to the broiler
element with no thermostat to turn it off and on. When I first learned
to use the broiler I was told to leave the oven door slightly open.
I've seen but never had an oven like you describe. My ovens always had
one knob for the baking temperature and turning it all the way turned
off the lower element and turned on the broiler element... with NO
thermostat for the broiler. When I first learned to use it I was told
to leave the door slightly open when using the broiler.
I don't know about the original question, but there seems to be more
variety around than has been mentioned.
My 1990s, low end oven has one knob. When I turn it all the way, it
goes into broil mode, then I can turn it down to the temperature I want
using only the top element. When I turn it all the way off, it leaves
broil mode and when I turn it back on again, it is back in bake mode,
using both elements.
I had one like that once. The thermostat continued to work even
though you had selected broil with the other knob. Sometimes I used
it that way to sort of cycle the broil element but I don't think the
manuf expected you to use it that way. I think it was just simpler
for them to have a basic thermostat on one knob and then a switch knob
that picked upper or lower element. I have one at our lake house now
that has it all in one knob. My oven at home has "electronic"
As far as safety goes I've always wondered why the didn't just put
timers on oves/stoves that would shut them off if they ran for more
than say 8 hours.
On Mon, 14 Mar 2011 05:18:12 -0700 (PDT), jamesgangnc
Now I think I did it that way every time for the last 27 years. That
I never put the thermostat on broil, and figured it would keep running
because the door was open, and yet I complained to people that the
broiler wasn't hot enough. Now the old oven is in pieces, but I'll
try to broil properly with the new oven, and then I'll have to find
all those people and correct the mistake I probably told them. Ugh.
On Mon, 14 Mar 2011 05:18:12 -0700 (PDT), jamesgangnc
They have had it that way for several years now. In fact if you want
an electric oven that will stay warm for more than 8 hours or
whatever, they later came out with Sabbath Mode, which is cheap enough
to add at the factory and pretty common. Observant Jews won't cook on
the Sabbath, but they will let something that is already cooked stay
warm if the oven is already turned on. An early generation of
electronically controlled electric ovens kept turning off in the
middle of the night and everything was cold by the next day.
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