If your Westinghouse electric range has a cooktop surface element that won’t heat up or turn on, use these four steps to help you troubleshoot the problem, so you can repair or replace the faulty parts and get your range’s surface element heating properly again.
WARNING – If you are attempting to repair any range yourself, be aware that you are working with potentially dangerous electrical currents that can cause serious bodily injury or death. Always remove the electrical power source from the appliance before you ever begin working on it. If you are attempting to repair any household gas appliances yourself, always be sure to turn off the gas that is designated to the appliance before you ever begin to repair it. Be aware that ranges have extremely sharp edges and hot parts that can cause serious bodily injury or death. Be aware that there are many other dangers and precautions involved with a range repair besides those listed above. We strongly suggest that you please read our DISCLAIMER before any further actions are taken or proceeding any further. Think safety first!
Westinghouse Electric Range
Step-1. Surface Heating Element
Surface heating elements are insulated coils with a metal covering that creates heat and electrical resistance to achieve a desired temperature that has been selected for cooking. If your electric ranges cooktop has a surface coil element that is not heating, you will need to check the heating element for visual signs of damage. Locate the surface element that is not heating up and visually inspect it to determine whether or not it has any damage. Look for cracks, burnt or chard spots, blistering on the element or a break in the coil element. If you have done a thorough visual inspection of the element and do not find any obvious signs of damage, you will then need to do a continuity test using either a digital or analog test meter to determine whether or not the heating element has continuity. Troubleshooting tip – If you don’t have a test meter, a digital meter can be purchased reasonably cheap from any of your local hardware stores. A test meter is a real time and money saver while troubleshooting all of the electrical parts that are used on a range. Electrical parts can be diagnosed either good or bad very quick and easy. Instead of just assuming that an electrical part is faulty and replacing it, only to find out that part wasn’t bad and the problem lies elsewhere. With another faulty range part. If the test shows that the element has continuity, then the part is good and the problem lies elsewhere, If the test shows that the element does not have continuity then the element is bad and it will need to be replaced with a new one. Safety Warning – Please keep in mind that just because a range heating element doesn’t look hot, does not mean that it isn’t hot, it can still burn your hands or other body parts. You will want to give your range plenty of time to cool down and be sure to wear safety gloves while inspecting, troubleshooting, removing or replacing any of your range’s parts.
Step-2. Radiant Heating Element
You will need to locate the element under the ranges cooktop surface that is not heating up and visually inspect it to determine whether or not it is damaged. Look for cracks, burnt or chard spots on the heating element or a break in the radiant element coil. If you have done a thorough visual inspection of the element and do not find any obvious damage, you will then need to do a continuity test using a test meter to determine whether the heating element has continuity or not. If the test shows the element has continuity, then it is good and the element should function properly. If the element tests show that it does not have continuity then it is bad and you will need to replace it with a new one.
Step-3. Surface Element Receptacle
If your Westinghouse range’s surface element starts working erratically, the receptacle on the range and the element terminals may be charred or burnt. This will cause the surface coil element to lose electrical contact at times with the receptacle that the element is plugged into. It is always best to replace both the element and the receptacle at the same time. If the terminals on the element are burnt, then the contacts on the receptacle block are probably burnt as well. If a new element is used with a burnt receptacle the parts may not last very long or give you proper service.
Step-4. Surface Element Switch
The surface element switch is also referred to as the surface control switch and the infinite control switch. It is used on a free-standing ranges cooktop surface to control and send voltage to the surface element. Some of the most common symptoms of a faulty surface element switch are, the surface element may stay on high heat, the surface element may stay at high heat no matter what setting you have the selector knob on the control switch set at or you may not be able to turn the surface element on or off at all. If the surface element is acting erratically, the surface element control switch is the main culprit, and it should be replaced.