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7 Most Common Electric Cooktop Problems

most common electric cooktop problems
Sep 2021

Quickly attending to common electric cooktop problems can help you to avoid bigger repair expenses. Also, when you repair and maintain an electric cooktop adequately, it’ll perform optimally and give you rest of mind when cooking. 

The increase in the sales of electric cooktops is an indication of how important they are to the average Canadian home. But sadly, an electric cooktop can develop issues and need repairs as time goes on. 

Here, we’ll help you navigate these unavoidable issues by exploring how to fix an electric cooker. We’ll discuss how to troubleshoot and fix seven common electric cooktop problems. More importantly, we’ll highlight electric cooktop maintenance tips to help you prevent faults from developing.

How to Troubleshoot an Electric Cooktop

Having a basic knowledge of the likely causes of a defective cooktop and possible solutions is important. It’ll help you understand how to tackle each problem and how best to solve them. See how to troubleshoot some common electric cooktop problems below. 

What to Test if the Electric Cooktop Isn’t Coming On

To troubleshoot an electric cooktop that isn’t coming on is an easy process. But to be safe, you need to ensure the power source is off. Then, you can proceed to check if the unit is plugged in correctly to the outlet. If it’s plugged in correctly, the outlet may be faulty. 

But, if your unit is connected to the circuit breaker, you can make sure the switch for the cooktop is on. Then lookout for any blown-fuse. If you can’t fix the problem, it’s better to call for an electric cooktop technician.

What to Test If No Burners are Working

As the name implies, a burner is the surface of the electric cooktop that cooks your food. Burners heat up once the electric cooktop is connected to a power source. Each burner on an electric cooktop functions separately and is independent of the other in terms of wiring.

In most cases, some faulty parts of the cooktop affect only one burner. But, faulty components in a cooktop can also go on to affect more than one burner. If all the burners on your electric cooktop are malfunctioning, it may be a result of a severe electrical defect. 

You can go on to troubleshoot your electric cooktop because you may end up saving costs by doing so. Check below to see how to troubleshoot a common problem like your electric cooktop burners not coming on. 

Take a Look at the Power Source

test if no burners are working

There are different ways to connect an electric cooktop to power. For example, some people may have their cooktops plugged into a wall socket, while others may connect it directly to the circuit breaker. So, when the burners on the cooktop refuse to come on, you need first to check the source of electricity or power. 

If your cooktop gets electricity from the wall socket, ensure it’s properly plugged in. Sometimes, a wall socket may be loose, causing the plug of the cooktop to disconnect from power slightly. The burners may not come on if the cooktop plug is halfway in the wall socket or outlet. 

If the burners still won’t come on after plugging the cooktop correctly, the next line of action is to check the outlet itself to make sure it’s in good condition or if it’s receiving enough power. Again, if the outlet or socket is faulty, the burners won’t come on. 

You don’t have any business with the electric cooktops outlet that gets power directly from the circuit breaker. First, check on the circuit breaker. Ensure that the switch for the electric cooktop is on; inside the breaker box. Then check for any blown fuse. Don’t forget to turn off the electrical power source before checking for burner problems in your electric cooktop.

Check the Power Cord 

The power cord transmits electricity to the cooktop for it to function properly. So if there’s a problem with the power cord of your electric cooktop, it won’t come on. 

When connecting the power cord to your cooktop, some wires are connected to the terminal block. You can tell if the cord is faulty or not just by looking at it. You may notice corrosion, loose connections or other damages that’ll affect the overall performance of the cooktop. 

You can test the cord with a multimeter to find out the problem. The multimeter can also help you to test the connections at the terminal.

Related article: Gas vs Induction Cooktops: Which Is Best for You?

What to Test if just One Burner isn’t Working 

Common problems with electric cooktops usually affect one burner, and not of all of them. If a burner of your cooktop doesn’t come on, it means something is wrong. You may likely need the service of an electric cooktop technician. See below for ways you can troubleshoot an electric cooktop with a faulty burner. 

Scrutinise the Heating Element 

The burners of an electric cooktop come with separate heating elements and connections. When the electric cooktop burner is not working, you can first examine the heating element. Next, you need to ensure the heating element is securely and tightly in its position. 

The heating element has to sit well because the connection of the coils into the connector may break. Any damage to the connectors at the end of the coil will result in a total replacement of the heating coil. 

You can use a multimeter to check if the heating element is in good condition or not. Then go on to replace the terminal if the heating coil checks out.

Observe the Burner Switch

observe the burner switch

As the burners of an electric cooktop have different heating coils, they also have separate control switches. A burner control switch controls the flow of electrical currents. But, of course, when the switch gets faulty, electrical currents may no longer get into the coils, thus resulting in no heat. 

Before you test the burner control switch, remember to turn off the electric cooktop by unplugging it from the socket or shutting it down from the circuit breaker. Then, to find the burner control switch, focus on the area behind the control knob.

Finding or accessing the burner control switch varies due to your electric cooktop type. But you can return to the manual to discover how to reach the burner switch through dismantling. 

Once you find the switch, trace the wires of the faulty burner down to the burner control switch. There may be no physical damage or issue. The switch usually wears out after some time. However, fix it by disconnecting the wires and then reconnect them to a new switch. It’s not a difficult process.

Common Electric Cooktop Problems and How to Fix Them

Feeding is a very vital part of human existence. An electrical cooktop is an appliance for cooking different types of homemade meals by providing heat. Many homeowners prefer electric cooktops because of their easy installation and provide an exact and steady temperature control when cooking. 

It doesn’t matter if the cooktop is on your cooking stove or if it’s a standalone cooktop; it offers good cooking capacity in modern homes. But as time goes on, electric cooktops develop faults or issues. 

The purpose of owning a home appliance like an electric cooktop is for making life easier. So, once your cooktop starts giving problems, it’s best to repair it. However, if you try troubleshooting the cooktop and the fault persists, you have to call in the help of an electrical cooktop technician. 

Every appliance in your home, including the electric cooktop, is to function at peak efficiency at all times. With the electrical cooktop being one of the most important home appliances, you need to fix it anytime it develops any fault. Here are some of the common electric cooktop problems and how to fix them below:

If your Electric Cooktop Sparks When It Comes On

It’s abnormal for an electric cooktop to create sparks when it comes on. If you observe any spark from the electric unit, you have some repairs to make. Sparks from an electric cooktop is an indication that there may be a problem with the heating element. 

The healing element can develop faults if you place excessive weight on it or the temperature is too much to handle. These problems can result in those hazardous sparks. You can also look out for loose connections close to the coil burners; they can also cause sparks.

These sparks are very dangerous and are a source of lethal electric shock. Now that you understand the inherent risk, always allow an electric cooktop technician to handle such repairs. 

Electric Cooktop Won’t Come On.

Your electric cooktop is useless if it doesn’t come on when you need it. Different issues can stop an electric cooktop from coming on. However, the most basic reason an electric cooktop won’t come on is if it’s not plugged in. 

So, ensure you plug in the cooktop properly and check that the outlet is not faulty. Using a multimeter, you can check if the outlet is okay or not. If you don’t have a multimeter, you can use smaller appliances like a blow dryer to check if the outlet is okay. 

If the outlet is faulty, you can fix the outlet if you know how to fix an electric cooktop. Better still, you can contact an electrician to reduce possible electric hazards.

Temperature Adjustment Problems

A major feature that endears homeowners to electric cooktops is the temperature settings. If you’re unable to control the temperature of the burners, you’ll not be maximising the cooktop features.

A faulty infinite switch may be responsible for the temperature adjustment issue. A defective infinite switch can cause your burners to burn at a particular level irrespective of your settings or preference. An electric cooktop technician is in the best position to repair a common temperature problem with your electric cooktop

Coil Problems in the Electric Cooktop

Conventional electric cooktops come with electric coil burners. So whenever you switch on the electric cooktop, the coils are to heat for you to cook.  But if the cooktop is getting power without the coils heating, some culprits may be responsible. 

The cooktop’s basic cause of coil problems is an unsteady interconnection between the cooktop and the coils. Sometimes, you may not properly place or return the coil after cleaning the cooktop. If the coil is unsteady, the electrical current won’t get to it. 

Also, check for the internal ignition switch of the cooktop. It provides necessary action to heat burners. Resolving coil problems in an electric cooktop may be complicated, so you need to contact an electric cooktop technician.

Cooktop Indicator Lights Won’t Come On.

Many recent cooktops have different displays or indicator lights that communicate the temperature settings on your unit. So, if you observe that the indicator light won’t come on, the control switch is possibly defective. 

On some occasions, you may be lucky to discover that the problem may be from a burnt-out bulb. There’s no need to worry as both the control switch and bulb are replaceable. You simply need to contact the right electric cooktop technician. 

Food not Heating Evenly

food not heating evenly

Sometimes, the wrong pan on a flattop range is the reason your food isn’t heating adequately. To put a stop to food unevenly heating, select pans with the matching diameter of heating elements. 

Also, the material of the pan matters, as copper and aluminium pans usually heat food evenly.  But copper, aluminium, ceramic, and stainless steel pans mostly scratch the surface of the cooktop.  

If you test different pans and your food still cooks unevenly, the cooktop may have an internal problem. Call the attention of a more experienced individual or technician.

Defective Surface Element 

If the surface element of your electric cooktop isn’t functioning, different reasons may be responsible. A faulty surface element switch, bad element receptacle, a burnt surface element, or a loose wire connection are possible culprits for a faulty surface element. 

Fixing a defective surface element can be technical. So it requires the attention of a sound electric cooktop electrician.

Electric Cooktop Maintenance Tips

An electric cooktop is one of the easiest kitchen appliances to maintain. First, you just need to ensure you don’t damage the stovetop when cleaning it. Then, you can follow the recommendation of the cooktop for the best materials to use for cleaning the cooktop. 

Also, using the right cookware on your electric cooktop contributes to its longevity in your home. Using the wrong cookware can permanently dent the surface of your cookware. Again, you can refer to the owner’s manual on the best type of cookware to use on your electric cooktop to avoid common problems.  

Then another way to maintain your electric cooktop is to ensure you always call a technician to fix any problem. Trying to fix the cooktop by yourself without the right skillset can cause more problems. 

Final Thoughts 

The best way to have a peak-performing electric cooktop is to fix any common problem you notice immediately. Allowing the fault with your electric cooktop to linger may result in bigger repair expenses for you.

But you can use our affordable appliance repair service to get your electric cooktop up and running again. 


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