Major Appliances/Oven problem...


Mr. Campion,
I've got a GE electric wall oven (single oven) model JTP15BDBB.  I was using it one day (on BROIL) to brown a steak, and it made a sudden "POP" noise, and turned off.  I went to the breaker box, and the breaker had been thrown.  I tried to turn the breaker back on, but it popped right back off.
Later...after everything had cooled off...I went back to the breaker box, and was able to turn the breaker back on with no trouble.  I again tried to use the oven, and it heated up...and then made the same kind of popping noise and turned off.  (Again, throwing the breaker.)
I called Mr. Appliance, and they sent a technician over.  He opened the control panel and checked all the circuits...and they all checked out.  (I thought that...when the oven heated up and the wires expanded, there might be a short somewhere.) But he said that circuits all checked out, and that it must be a bad breaker.  We went down to the breaker box, and I showed him the breaker for the oven.  He said that it was too small (20 AMP) and that we needed at least 30 AMP, and that if it were his oven, he'd get a 40 amp breaker.  So that's what I did:  Got a 40 amp double pole breaker, and installed it.  
The oven heated up fine for a little while...and then "POP" and it turned back off, throwing the new breaker again.

Got no idea what's wrong.  I don't want to have the guy come back out and charge me for another service call when he didn't fix it the first time.  Do I need to get an electrician, or do I need a specialized electrician who is trained to work on ovens?  
Any suggestions or advice you can give me would be greatly appreciated.
Warm regards,
David Gardner

Good Morning David,
         I agree with the guy who came out and would have most likely have done the same thing myself concerning the breaker.  20 amp is way too small and for a single oven a 30 amp breaker is just fine.  You are only using two elements.  Double oven or a range requires a 40 amp breaker.  On to your problem....Most ovens are hard wired.  If you can get to the junction box where your wall oven connects to the wiring coming from your breaker.....first check to see the gauge of the wire supplying the oven.  It should be at least number 10 (Normally Orange colored) but preferably 8 which is normally black.  Older wire is not included in this color change.  Next check connections in this box.  Check connections at the rear of the unit going to each element....bake and broil.  If connections are good and secure, it could actually be a bad element....Don't go replacing them just cause it is a possibility....I've seen it all.   Check these items and let me know what you find.

Good Luck, Eric  

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Eric Campion


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