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Why Won't My Oven Self Clean?

One of the beauties of the oven is its ability to self clean. It's not just about having an oven that looks nice. If you don't regularly clean out your oven you're leaving food residue to build up and eventually burn. This means your smoke detector will start going off pretty regularly and you may soon be dealing with an all out fire hazard if you don't keep it clean. This is why the self clean feature on modern ovens is so important. If you're having trouble getting your oven to perform this pretty important task, it's time to do some digging.

An oven that won't self clean can be suffering from a couple of different issues and the lack of self clean function is just a symptom of something larger. While you can do a lot of the poking around to figure this out yourself, ovens are nothing to mess with if you don't have the experience and expertise to diagnose and repair a problem. Start doing research but be prepared to call a professional to get the problem sorted for good.

Problems with the door lock

As part of the self clean process the oven door will lock, much like your washing machine door locks, to prevent the oven door from opening (this is a safety feature). If there is a problem with the door lock, then the self clean cycle won't start. Take a look at the lock and see if you can spot any obvious damage but know that more often than not, this is an electrical and mechanical issue that a professional will need to assess.

Faulty oven control board

It's possible the issue with the self clean not working runs deeper into the machine. Your oven is controlled by the control board whose circuits relay messages and send electrical currents throughout the appliance to run. If these circuits get damaged or were somehow defective to begin with, your oven won't be doing much of anything, let alone self cleaning. You can have an issue with the control board and still have some functionality in your oven so if you suspect this is the cause of the issue, call a professional to come out and inspect the bowels of your appliance to see if you need a replacement control board.

Uncalibrated thermostat

There is an internal thermostat that makes sure the oven is reaching the desired temperature and maintaining it. When the thermostat is faulty or not calibrated correctly, it can lead to issues. It has calibration settings for certain oven functions such as baking, broiling, or convection, depending on the abilities of your oven. It will also have a separate calibration for the self clean cycle so you may find that while it works fine for baking, it may not work so hot for self cleaning. A professional can take a look and let you know if you need a replacement.

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