How to Troubleshoot Electric Stove Top Burners

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The typical electric stove consists of stove top burners, otherwise known as elements. The burner elements on an electric stove have coils that generate heat. Electricity travels to the coils via a plug that inserts into a receptacle in the stove top. If one or more of your electric stove's burner elements don't work, the problem can be troubleshooted by implementing a straight-forward procedure. With a minimal amount of effort, the problem can be diagnosed, and the determination can be made whether or not to call an appliance service technician.

Things You'll Need

  • Electrical voltage meter
  • Test all the burners on the stove top to determine if the problem is with one burner or with all of them. Turn on the oven to check if it works.

  • Locate the electrical cord, and ensure it's still plugged into the outlet if all the burners and the oven don't work.

  • Inspect the circuit breaker that supplies electricity to the stove, and ensure it's not tripped. If it is, reset it by sliding the switch to the "off" position and then to the "on" position.

  • Pull out the problem burner by hand, and reattach it into the receptacle in the stove top. The burner may have become slightly unplugged and may need to be plugged in again. Test to see if the burner now works.

  • Unplug the problem burner, if it still isn't working, and insert the probes from a voltage meter into the receptacle on the stove top. If the meter responds positively, then the receptacle has current, and you may need to replace the burner. If the meter doesn't respond positively, there may be a more serious problem that may require the services of an appliance technician.

Tips & Warnings

  • While none of the suggested steps are very dangerous, caution should be taken when working with any electrical appliance.
  • Photo Credit Hemera Technologies/AbleStock.com/Getty Images
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