Questions About Electric Ranges And Microwaves

As a repairman I get a lot of questions about electric ranges. Here is a list of the most frequently asked questions about ranges.

Frequently Asked Questions About Ranges

I just purchased an electric range why didn’t it come with a cord?

Years ago the national electric code said that all mobile homes had to put in a four-wire system then later they said that all houses had to have a four-wire system. This means before they passed the law all houses had a three-wire plug for the dryer and now all houses and mobile homes have a four-wire plug for the dryer. So you must buy the cord separate so that you will have the right cord for your home. Some appliance dealers will give you the cord free others will charge you extra.

I just moved and my old range has a three-wire cord but my new house has a four-wire plug. Can I get an adapter?

There is no such thing. You need to change the cord on your dryer to a four-wire cord. Do not attempt to change the plug because your house has a four-wire system. This page should help

Range Cord Installation

What do I use to clean my glass top?

They make a special cleaner and normally a sample bottle comes with all new electric ranges or cook tops.

When I turn the surface unit off on my glass top the light stays on for a few minutes is this normal?

Yes, that light will stay on until the surface temperature gets below about 120 degrees to let you know that it’s safe to touch.

Is it normal for the door on my oven to stay locked for a while after the clean cycle is over?

Yes, the door will not unlock until the temperature inside the oven gets below about 500 degrees.

My range is not that so old why is it broken down already?

I get this question about electric ranges more than any other and my answer is always the same. Every appliance breaks down some on the same day you buy it and others in 20 years. Also appliances have always broken down. Yes I will agree that appliances are not made as good as they used to be. The average life of most appliances now days is about 8 to 12 years, whereas it used to be about 10-20 years. But you have to think that the cost of appliances now is about the same as it was 20 years ago, yet labor and materials are higher. So the only way they can still sell appliances at low prices is to cut quality. Also appliances do more than they used to therefore, more to go wrong.

Frequently Asked Questions About Microwaves

My microwave came with a metal rack but I thought you couldn’t put metal in a microwave?

It is a special kind of metal that is safe to use in microwaves. You can only have the rack in microwave if you need it. So if you only have one plate to heat in the microwave, leave the rack out and only use the rack if you have two plates to heat at once.

Why is my microwave arcing and sparking (shooting fire) near the rack holder?

Leaving the rack inside the microwave all the time causes this. You should only have it in the microwave when you need it.

Can I turn the turntable off on my microwave?

Some microwaves have a turntable on/off switch and some do not.

How can I tell if my microwave is heating fast enough?

The cooking speed varies with different models. I test it by placing a clear glass with about two cups of water in the microwave then set it to cook on high for two minutes. The water should be boiling by the time its finished. If not, refer to my microwave not heating repair guide.

How tall does my cabinet have to be in order to install an over the range microwave?

You must have, give or take, 30 inches above the cook top (about 29-31 inches).

How do I clean the grease filters on my over-the-range microwave?

Manufacturers recommend soaking them in soapy water. I have found that the dishwasher works very well for this.

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