Learn how to troubleshoot repair problems and service Major Appliance Repair training books and manuals. DIY BOOKS ON clothes washer, clothes dryer, refrigerator ...
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4-1 NORMAL OPERATION NOTE: The diagnosis sections of this chapter assume that all other electrical controls, i.e. timer and thermostatic-limit controls, as described in chapter 2, are operating properly, and the malfunction has been isolated to the heating system!!! The heating element is simply a big resistor wire, with enough resistance to generate a high heat. Usually these arenichrome wire, surrounded in ceramic insulation, with a steel sheath around the ceramic.
Inside the oven, the heating element is called a "bake" or "broil" element. A "bake" element is located below the oven it affects. A "broil" element is located above the oven it affects. See figure 4-A. Figure 4-A: Oven Elements In a electric cooktop, the heater elements are coiled into a round thing called a "surface unit." A single surface unit might contain two or even three different elements all mounted together, with different resistance ratings.
Sometimes the wiring is screwed directly to terminals on the ends of the surface unit. Some surface units plug into a receptacle mounted under the cooktop, which makes them more easily removable for cleaning, but also more susceptible to burned connections. (Figure 4-B) Figure 4-B: Typical Surface Units TEMPERATURE CONTROL To maintain a set temperature in an electric cooktop, the element is cycled on and off, usually by a switch called an infinite switch, so named because it theoretically provides an infinite number of heat settings.
This switch has its own little heater inside, which heats a bimetal switch. (see figure 4-C) A cam attached to the control knob changes spring tension on the bimetal, which changes the amount of heat needed to open the switch. When the heating element is on, the heater inside the switch is on. The bimetal heats (along with the element) until the contacts open. Then the bimetal cools (along with the elements) until the contacts close again.
There are also fixed-temperature switches that vary the voltage going to the heating elements to maintain fixed, pre-set temperatures. These are usually push-button or rotary switches with fixed settings such as warm, low, medium and high. In fixed-temperature switch controls, heat levels are varied by applying different voltages (110V or 220V) to different coils of different resistances, as shown in figure 4-C.
In an oven, the temperature is controlled by a thermostat. Using a liquid-filled bulb and capillary, the thermostat senses temperature inside the oven and cycles the heating system on and off to maintain oven temperature within a certain range. Figure 4-C: Temperature Control Switches