It is Sunday and you had planned to cook a roast for the family dinner, however, as soon as you switched on the oven it tripped all the electrics. The first thing you do is reset the fuse box before trying again, only to have the same thing happen. Now you are worried as, after all, Sunday roast comes around only once a week and it looks like it won’t be happening this Sunday. Before you call an appliance repair professional, consider the following:
Possible Reasons Why an Electric Appliance Keeps Tripping the House Electrics
There are several reasons why an electric system keeps tripping. As a general rule, if it occurs when an electric appliance such as your oven is switched on, it may be due to a problem with the wiring or the circuit. If, however, it occurs when a specific function is selected, it may be that a component that is linked to that particular function is faulty. You will have to call in an appliance technician who will perform a number of checks to narrow down the possible cause of the problem such as:
1. A problem with the circuit.
The first step is to check whether there is a circuit overload due to multiple appliances that are connected to the same circuit as your electric oven. The technician will unplug all other appliances and if the problem is circuit overload, the oven should no longer trip the electrics when switched on. The solution is to connect other appliances to a separate circuit reserved for plugs, or you may have to have the over circuit upgraded to increase capacity.
If circuit overload is not the problem the technician will perform further checks to determine the problem including:
- Using a clamp-on amp meter to measure the oven’s current power load. If the power load is too great when the oven is switched on, the circuit may have to be upgraded.
- Checking for any damage to the circuit wires or insulation. A problem with the wiring or a faulty circuit breaker may also be a reason why the electrics keep tripping. The electrician will swap the circuit breaker for one of the same rating from another circuit to check if this is the problem.
2. Problems with the oven’s wiring or power plug.
The appliance technician will first unplug the appliance before inspecting the power plug for damaged wiring or any soot present. The current will be measured while the power is turned off which should normally read “0”. If the current reading is > 0.3A, it is usually an indication that the wiring may be damaged.
Some ovens are equipped with terminal blocks for use across Europe. For these to be compatible with circuits in the UK, these links should be positioned in the correct way. If you have recently purchased your oven check that the links are correctly positioned for your area.
If it is an older model, check that the oven’s terminal block is still in working condition. As terminal blocks deteriorate over time they will need to be replaced. Ask your technician for his advice on the correct model to purchase.
3. Problems with the oven’s components.
To determine whether there is short in the fuse, ensure that there are no other appliances connected before turning the oven on at a low temperature. If the electrics are not tripped immediately, this will confirm that there are no problems with the fuse.
If the electrics trip when the temperature is raised, however, there may be a problem with one of the oven’s heating elements. If this is the case you will need to call an appliance technician to replace the part.
Important Things to Remember
Remember that as a rule all appliances should be regularly serviced according to instructions contained in the manufacturer’s manual. If you are experiencing any problems with your oven you should call in a registered NICEIC or Gas-Safe engineer to inspect the appliance and carry out any necessary repairs. If you notice that an appliance is not working at an optimal level, you should have it serviced as soon as possible to prevent any serious damage from occurring in the future.