Cooktop: Surface element doesn't heat

On a cooktop that uses surface element switches to control the elements, a failed surface element switch can prevent the surface element from heating. On electronically-controlled cooktops, a failed surface element relay on the electronic control board that controls surface elements can keep a surface element from heating.

No matter which type of control your cooktop uses, a broken surface element won’t heat. If your cooktop uses coil surface elements, examine the element that isn’t heating and replace the coil element if you see a cracked or broken coil. Radiant surface elements are harder to check for damage because they’re under the glass cooktop. Unplug the cooktop and remove the burner box to access and check a radiant surface element that isn’t heating. Replace the surface element if you see a break in the ribbon element.

A radiant surface element has a limiter switch that cycles the radiant element off to protect the ceramic glass cooktop from overheating. A failed limiter switch won’t allow the radiant element to heat. Disconnect electric power to the cooktop and check for continuity through the limiter switch using a multimeter. You should measure near 0-ohms of resistance through the limiter switch indicating that the switch is allowing current to flow through the element. If you measure OL or “open load” indicating that the switch isn’t allowing current to flow through the element, then the limiter switch has failed. The limiter switch is often included with a radiant element but not always. Replace the limiter switch if it’s a separate part and it’s preventing the radiant surface element from heating . If the limiter isn’t available as a separate part, replace the radiant surface element.

These repairs may help solve your Cooktop problem:

Replace the cooktop radiant surface element

Radiant surface element

A radiant surface element is mounted under the glass top. It provides the heat source for cooking. If the radiant surface element doesn’t heat when you turn it on, replace it.

For manuals, repair guides, and specific part recommendations, enter your model number.

Replace the cooktop surface element switch

Surface element switch

The surface element switch—also called a surface burner switch or infinite burner switch—turns on the heating elements on an electric cooktop. If the switch's electrical contacts fail, the switch might not turn the surface burner on or off, or it might not control the heat level of the burner.

For manuals, repair guides, and specific part recommendations, enter your model number.

Replace the cooktop coil surface element

Coil surface element

The coil surface element—also known as the coil element—plugs into the terminal block in an electric cooktop. It's controlled by a surface element switch (also called an infinite burner switch) and sits above a drip pan. It provides the heat for that location on the cooktop. Replace the coil surface element if it's physically damaged or won't heat.

For manuals, repair guides, and specific part recommendations, enter your model number.

Replace the cooktop electronic control board

Electronic control board

Some cooktops use an electronic control board to control the surface elements. If the electronic control board doesn't turn on a surface burner or the display panel or indicator lights don't light up, replace the electronic control board.

For manuals, repair guides, and specific part recommendations, enter your model number.

Replace the cooktop limiter on a radiant surface element

Limiter

The radiant surface element has a limit switch that shuts off the element to protect the ceramic glass cooktop from overheating. That limiter is included with the element on some radiant surface elements, while on others it can be replaced as a separate component. If a surface element fails to heat, or the limiter is not regulating the maximum temperature properly, replace it.

For manuals, repair guides, and specific part recommendations, enter your model number.

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