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Battling the oven

helena1's picture

Battling the oven (post #64606)

in

Very determined not to let a funky oven bring me down, I marched into town Friday to look for an oven thermometer. I then started preheating the oven to see how far off it really is, when things that bake in 25 minutes now require 60 minutes of baking time. So I put it on, set the knob to 350 as best as I could and waited. After 30 minutes, the temp was up to 250 degrees. After 40 minutes, it was 280. I assumed (how wrong!!) that by now it would be completely preheated and upped the temperature. To make a long story short, the temp is off by appox. 50 degrees and it takes an hour to properly preheat. I baked a quick bread to test and the temperture remained constant for the hour it baked (like the recipe said).


The question is now: can I trust this oven? Do any of you have experience like this at all? I've been so spoiled with an oven that I could set to the required temp on the degree exact, that preheated in 10 minutes and performed consistently. Would you trust this thing to bake in at all? What about cookies, that have to bake for 10 minutes only?


gourmand's picture

(post #64606, reply #1 of 46)

is it gas or electric?

 Growing old is inevitable, Growing up is optional.

 Growing old is inevitable, Growing up is optional.

helena1's picture

(post #64606, reply #2 of 46)

gourmand's picture

(post #64606, reply #3 of 46)

I wonder if your element is bad. When you preheat both bake and broil elements should be on. Check and make sure they are both getting hot. Probably the control if not one of the elements.


You can adjust the control knob so the temp matches the oven. Should be an adjustment screw behind the knob.


 Growing old is inevitable, Growing up is optional.

 Growing old is inevitable, Growing up is optional.

helena1's picture

(post #64606, reply #4 of 46)

Okay, so this is one more vote that this isn't 'normal'. I knew about the knob, and think that as long as I know what setting reaches what temperature, it's fine. It's just the preheating thing that worries me. Then again, once it was warm, if kept it's tempertaure fine. (?)


As this is a rental house, I'm not prepared to have it repaired or replaced, so I will have to make do with it I'm afraid..


gourmand's picture

(post #64606, reply #5 of 46)

Elements are fairly cheap. Over here the landlord would fix that at no cost to you. Are you not paying rent for housing with a working oven. Don't know what you pay for electricity but 1 hour is a lot of wasted energy.

 Growing old is inevitable, Growing up is optional.

 Growing old is inevitable, Growing up is optional.

helena1's picture

(post #64606, reply #6 of 46)

You are of course right about the wasted energy. This is not a standard landlord situation though, to be frank. We rented the house from our realtor, as temporary housing until our new house is built. The house has seen dozens and dozens of different families and has never been taken care of. Plus, I strongly suspect the realtor/owner isn't being upfront about income through rent with the tax services. So everything is a little off. We're just trying to make the best out of the situation I guess...

Gretchen's picture

(post #64606, reply #7 of 46)

Ummmm. That is not your problem. You should at LEAST ask that the oven be fixed, particularly since this person has already financially benefitted from your home sale (I assume)--and also should know you well enough to know how much you bake and need a proper oven.  Get if fixed.

Gretchen

Gretchen
helena1's picture

(post #64606, reply #8 of 46)

assibams's picture

(post #64606, reply #9 of 46)

Is the kitchen part of your rental agreement, I mean does the contract specify a fully equipped kitchen? If yes, then the oven is the owner's responsibility. If no, then things are a little trickier. Also, the oven is technically working, it's just old and slow. I don't think there is much you can do, but plead and hope for the best. Does the owner like baked goods? Maybe a little bribery could work.


If all else fails maybe you could buy one of those small toaster ovens for cookie and muffin baking? They really aren't expensive and might be nice to have even after you move into your own home.



Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken.

"A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort."
Herm Albright

helena1's picture

(post #64606, reply #10 of 46)

Heh. No, the contract doesn't specify a fully equipped kitchen (surprise, surprise). And I agree, it's basically old and slow and not much you can do about. Then again, the whole house is old and slow. THe 4 burners in the kitchen do work, but only one can get water boiling fast enough to be called an actual burner. Two out of 4 are only suitable for simmering already boiling things. Le sigh. We're stuck with it for now!


I don't know, but I've never thought the small toaster things were practical. Not that I have a good reason for it, they just don't appeal to me. I can still go to mom or my sister and make their homes smell good ;o)


Gretchen's picture

(post #64606, reply #11 of 46)

If you have any place for a toaster oven in your new home, do get one now. I use mine SO much now. Truly love it.

Gretchen

Gretchen
knitpik's picture

(post #64606, reply #12 of 46)

I think you need a really BIG toaster oven to bake. If I try to bake anything in my toaster oven it will definitely burn. Unless you're making muffins. LOL
Don't get me wrong, I love my toaster oven...but not for baking. I use it mostly for reheating or for a few oven fries or some fish fillets, that kind of stuff.

shar999's picture

(post #64606, reply #13 of 46)

Love my Cuisinart toaster oven.  Bake cookies, meats, and whatever I can fit into it as it heats up really quickly and doesn't heat up my kitchen during the warm months of the year.  My favorite appliance next to my Kitchenaid mixer.


  Also, it's portable and you can take it with you when you move on!

knitpik's picture

(post #64606, reply #15 of 46)

Do you bake cakes and breads in there too?

KentD's picture

(post #64606, reply #16 of 46)

I have an idea that there may be something wrong with the electricity to the stove. It may be unsafe, and it would cause it to work at half power.
Stoves run on 220 volts. The 220 comes from 2 lines at 110 relative to neutral. If 1 phase is off, you get half power. If you know anyone who understands this and can test the outlet, you should have it checked. The landlord should do it, because if 1 phase is off, it could be a lose wire or a bad connection. A bad connection will heat up, and could start a fire.

"Shared pain is lessened, shared joy is increased." -Spider Robinson

"Shared pain is lessened, shared joy is increased." -Callahan, Spider Robinson
Quilter's picture

(post #64606, reply #17 of 46)

Older stoves also have fuses.  Is it possible that one of them is blown?  That could leave you with only one working element in the oven depending on how old the stove is. 

Jean's picture

(post #64606, reply #18 of 46)

That may or may not be true for the Netherlands where Helene lives.




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helena1's picture

(post #64606, reply #20 of 46)

I really don't know if that's the case, but then, all our appliances run on 220 here, and ovens usually on 360. The electricity in the rest of the house seems fine....

Plover's picture

(post #64606, reply #21 of 46)

You know, for the price of a half decent toaster oven, you can probably get the oven fixed. Stoves are really pretty simple appliances and someone who knows what they are doing can figure out what is wrong with it pretty quick. If you are going to be living in the rental for any length of time, I think you'll be glad for an oven that works. I know it is irritating to put money into a rental, but not as irritating as not having an oven.

helena1's picture

(post #64606, reply #22 of 46)

KentD's picture

(post #64606, reply #23 of 46)

I forgot about the possibility that you were not in the US. I suspect you still have a similar 2 phase system, but with more voltage on the phases, so the idea is still valid.
The rest of the house would still work, because the problem might be in the wiring of the stove. Also, 1 phase, or half of the voltage, would power much of the house.
This "phase" term is confusing. Imagine batteries. If you had 2 batteries with 1.5 volts stacked, you could connect a 3 V bulb to the top and bottom of the stack, but you could connect a 1.5 V bulb from the bottom of the stack to the middle, between the two batteries. It is pretty similar. The details would only confuse you. The math can be horrible, with imaginary numbers and trigonometry.

"Shared pain is lessened, shared joy is increased." -Callahan, Spider Robinson

"Shared pain is lessened, shared joy is increased." -Callahan, Spider Robinson
teebee's picture

(post #64606, reply #41 of 46)

I am new here (we just got DSL where I live), so pardon me for jumping in.  The no oven thing would bother me, as well.  We are actually going through a remodel/addition (a brand new kitchen!), too.  My current oven is 24" (I am getting two 30" ovens in the new kitchen). 


As far as baking, have you tried an electric roaster?  I have used mine mainly for cooking, not baking (cakes, etc.), but I think that it could be used as I mini-oven.  It is probably more than you want to spend while building, but if you buy one, it would be yours to take with you (or sell) when you move in to your new home.  Just a thought.

MadMom's picture

(post #64606, reply #42 of 46)

Hi, teebee, and welcome to CT.  Please post pictures of your remodel, before, during, and after.  We all love to live vicariously!



Not One More Day!
Not One More Dime! Not One More Life! Not One More Lie!

End the Occupation of Iraq -- Bring the Troops Home Now!

And Take Care of Them When They Get Here!

helena1's picture

(post #64606, reply #45 of 46)

Welcome, welcome!! Great that you joined in! You'll have to show us pics of your kitchen remodel, we all love that here :o).


I have thought about the toasted oven, and I don't think I want to go that route. I don';t want to spend the money on something I'll probably never use after we've moved to the new house..


vjom's picture

(post #64606, reply #24 of 46)

So get the oven and burners fixed and present him with the bill before you pay your last months rent. If he refuses to reimburse you then take it off your last months rent. You can always report him to the IRS if you suspect he is not reporting income after you have moved into your new house.

helena1's picture

(post #64606, reply #25 of 46)

I know that what you're syaing is correct, but that's not exactly my style to handle things. Just doesn't fit me, sorry :o)

Lazio1954's picture

(post #64606, reply #27 of 46)

Helena, I can only imagine your frustration. The bright side is that you'll be planning your beautiful modern kitchen, and spring is not so far. Do whatever works for you to keep your spirits up; the new house will make up for your current discomfort and frustration. Keep your chin up, and keep sharing with us; I'm always glad to see a post from you.

Silvana

We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give.
Winston Churchill

Silvana We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give. Winston Churchill
helena1's picture

(post #64606, reply #28 of 46)

You just made my day :o). Thank you Silvana :o).


I know you're right and I need to focus on other things, I'm just getting a little frustrated! It was my husband's birthday yesterday, and our family was coming over so I had to bake of course. Per Marco's request I made dutch apple pie and rice flan. When it came out of the oven, it all looked marvelous. Marco asked to test-taste a piece of both, and I am so glad he did. The apple pie was passable, but the rice flan was bone dry. I ran into the kitchen and baked something else (apricot cumble cake) to make up for it. Even this recipe, that I have been baking for years, didn't come out the way it should have, although it was definately better than the previous attempts. I think I will have to lay low in the baking department for the next couple of months if I don't want to throw out one thing after another. Bummer!


On a happier note: the construction on our house officially started last Thursday. We're on our way to a new home!!!!


Hope everything is well with you too :o)


MadMom's picture

(post #64606, reply #29 of 46)

Wonderful that the construction has started.  I know it will seem like forever (our simple bathroom and office remodel seemed that way) but once it's done, you will have all these stories to tell which will suddenly become funny!  You and Marco can look at each other and say "remember that oven?" and laugh.  At least, keep telling yourself that!



Not One More Day!
Not One More Dime! Not One More Life! Not One More Lie!

End the Occupation of Iraq -- Bring the Troops Home Now!

And Take Care of Them When They Get Here!

helena1's picture

(post #64606, reply #30 of 46)

Thanks MM :o). We're trying to look on the birght side as much as we can. We're super-excited about the construction, and about fantasizing about the new house and the kitchen (!). It's definately a huge adventure for us :o). In the picture I've added Í'm standing on the site, waiting for the house to be built, LOL!


How did your remodel go? Is everything done now?