Sunday, October 2, 2011

Heating up on a cold weekend

Our oven has been broken for a few months, but with the summer BBQ season, we've easily avoided facing the repair. I wanted to make some kael chips and it seemed too cold to go outside and use the BBQ. My other half suggested buying a new stove, but really that seemed excessive, so I looked for repair info.

As it turns out, replacing the element in an electric oven is very easy - once you find the correct part. I phoned a few local hardware stores to see if they carrier the correct element, and they all said yes (except Downtown Lumber, which is a Home Hardware store, but the woman on the phone said that they specialize in building supplies.) Rather than drive up to the stockyards to the big box stores, I went to the neighborhood places. After visiting four stores with the burned out element in hand, I concluded that they no longer make the one I needed so was going to modify the one I found. There seem to be two types of connectors: slide-on or screw-on. Mine was the older slide-on type so I was just going to cut off the connectors, strip a bit of wire and connect it with the screws. Inspecting the product packaging more closely at home, I discovered that they are classified by numbers in a yellow circle and that ideally I needed #2. Rather than cut off the slide-on connectors, I called yet another hardware store asking for the #2, and they had the elusive part in stock. Near complete victory.

This easy Saturday project dragged on a few hours too long but replacing it took all of 5 minutes and now the oven is clean too. After restoring power, I tested out the oven and the element glows red. Now I can try the baked kael chips!

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