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7 Clear Signs Your Electric Cooktop Requires Repair

by Ann Ferguson

With any kitchen, the cooktop is a vital essential to everyday life. And with electric cooktops, you get precise and consistent temperature control, so you can make every meal perfect! But it can be a real bummer when your electric cooktop isn't working at peak efficiency!

While problems can occur with your electric cooktop (like with any other appliance), the easier you see the signs, the faster you can get everything back to working like normal! What signs are these? Take a look!

1. Not Turning On

Closeup of hand trying to turn electric cooktop on

The first sign of trouble with your electric cooktop is if it doesn't turn on. Usually, the fix is pretty simple — you just need to check that the plug is connected and that your breakers are working at full capacity. But if there's nothing wrong with the outlet, the problem is most likely caused by a faulty internal component.

If that's the case — let the pros (like our team!) handle it.

2. Heat is Inconsistent

Are your dinners coming out with burnt edges or severely undercooked in the middle? You're probably having issues with the heating elements! With radiant electric cooktops, the elements might not glow red or take longer to illuminate, which usually signals a problem with an internal component.

For coil cooktops, if the coils stay cold, the connection between them and the cooktop or the ignition might be loose. But it can also be the burners — they don't last forever!

3. Indicator Lights Won't Turn On

Closeup of hand checking indicator controls on electric cooktop

Most electric cooktops have indicator lights or an electronic display to show convenient information. But if the lights or displays don't come on, it could be a problem with the control switch, which provides power to the indicator lights and control panel.

However, you could also be dealing with burned-out bulbs in the cooktop. In either case, the parts need to be replaced!

4. Strange Smells

Cooking always brings a collection of smells, but when strange odors are a part of that mix, that's a definite sign of concern. If you notice a weird smell whenever you turn on the cooktop, something is wrong with the wiring or heating element. Once you notice the smell, turn off the cooktop and contact your professional service team to look at it.

5. Can't Adjust Temperature

Closeup of someone adjusting the temperature on a boiling pot

Electric cooktops offer precise heat control, so if you can't adjust the temperature, it can be a real problem when you cook. Most likely, the infinite switch that connects to the dial that regulates power levels is causing the issue. It might force your burners to set to one specific level regardless of which you put it at.

Or you could be dealing with a faulty ignition switch; either way, a professional service tech needs to look at it!

6. Seeing Sparks

Seeing sparks with a gas cooktop is normal, but you should never see them with an electric cooktop. The sparks could indicate a problem with the heating element, especially if faults in the cooktop develop. Typically, faults occur when excessive weight or temperature is placed too much on the handle of the heating element.

But if you have a coil cooktop, the sparks might be from a loose connection close to the coils (double-check those!).

7. Burner Cracks

Cracked glass cooktop

Cracks in the burners primarily occur on glass electric cooktops, and there are several reasons for them. Some cracks might occur from extreme temperature changes or something heavy being dropped on the surface.

Usually, there's no way to repair the damage. Instead, the glass portion of the cooktop will need to be replaced.

Electrify Your Cooking!

Now that you know more about the signs your electric cooktop needs repair, you're better prepared for those inevitable kitchen mishaps! So, if you're dealing with one of these issues, don't wait! Take it to our service team at Culligan of Le Mars today!

But if you have any questions, call our team or stop by!