The Oven Won't Heat: Can A Stove's Motherboard Be Fixed Without Calling An Electronics Guru?

Computerized stoves are run by motherboards. Motherboards are printed circuit boards (PCBs) that house your stove's electronic components or circuits. If something goes awry with one of those components, you will usually get an error message prompted by the motherboard. Those messages usually begin with the letter F or the letter E followed by a number, depending on the make and model of your stove (F15 or E5 for instance). A common example is an oven that won't heat past a certain temperature. Sometimes it won't heat at all. Can you save a service call and fix it yourself? It's possible, but not probable. The reason why comes down to how PCBs are made.

PCB Manufacturing Is A Delicate Business

A printed circuit board's technology relies on its sensitive components. Improper handling, dust, and static electricity can destroy a PCB. Manufacturers go to great lengths to preserve a PCB's structural integrity. Components are fitted onto the motherboard using special tools and clothing reminiscent of surgeons readying for surgery. Chip capacitors, memory cards, and various connectors are but a few of the components that require training to install and maintain. If you have some technological background, you may be able to follow a YouTube video or other training module for simple fixes. The pre-PCB days of wire-to-wire connections that were easy fixes are gone.

What Can You Check Before Determining A PCB Fail?

You can check several easy-to-get-to parts yourself if your oven isn't heating properly or isn't heating at all. Remember--safety first. For a gas stove, always unplug and shut off the gas before attempting any maintenance. Unplug your electric stove before checking it out. Don't wing it. If you have any doubt whatsoever in your ability to perform maintenance on your stove, call a professional, especially if your stove is still under warranty. Trying to fix it yourself may negate it.

Here are the parts that may be the root of your oven trouble:

  • The oven sensor. This will require an multimeter. Multimeters come in both analog and digital. It measures ohms.
  • The gas igniter if you have a gas stove.
  • The heating elements inside the oven if you have an electric stove. Check for breaks and blisters on the element. If there are none, check the continuity with a multimeter.
  • The thermostat on your electric stove can also be checked with a multimeter.

If all of your oven checks signal no problem, your motherboard may need serviced. Technology upgrades are commonplace in the PCB world. It's best to rely on a pro like Streamline Circuits.