Mailbag: “Repairing” a New Oven Thermostat

Peter L. wrote:

Oh wise Samurai Appliance Repair Man, I need your help to fix my oven and save my marriage?

I wish I still lived in Bradford, NH, in which case I could perhaps try to arrange an on-site visit, but I now live in Washington, DC.

Ah, the long version of my tale was too long, but suffice it to say the following. I had to replace the thermostat on my GE electric, self-cleaning range. I disassembled the new thermostat, thinking I might better be able to thread the capillary tube, but I realized that it was soldered internally so no go. Unfortunately, in the process, some parts came out and, since it now doesn’t work, I guess I didn’t know how to put them back. (Oven just heats and heats.)

Can you tell me how the internal elements go back together? It’s GE part # WB21X5320. I can provide more details by email, and the beer fund will grow! Thanks!

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GE oven thermostat--Click for larger viewOh, feckless grasshopper, what folly hast thou wrought with thy pernicious meddling? Oven thermostats are lovingly assembled at the factory by specially-trained Chinese political prisoners under exacting conditions using intricate little parts. Thermostats should never be disassembled by the uninitiated…unless you just want to dissect it like a frog in biology class. Your only recourse at this point is to shell out another $160 to buy a new thermostat.

And let that be a lesson to you!

Recommended Reading: Oven Thermostat Repair Lab Report

2 thoughts on “Mailbag: “Repairing” a New Oven Thermostat

  1. rickyG

    frigidaire, model #RG533HL, remove the thermostat and selector control out the front panel and in the process, a small silver ball bearing came off. I would like to put them back together but don’t know where to put the small silver ball bearing. Please help

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