Hidden bake elements—bake elements below the floor of the oven—are becoming more common in ovens, because they make the oven floor easier to clean and make the oven interior look sleek.
But if you're new to using an oven with a hidden bake element, you need to adjust how you bake. Here's why.
Hidden bake element takes longer to preheat
An oven with a hidden bake element takes longer to preheat, for a few reasons:
The cover over the hidden bake element blocks airflow.
The bake element heats the oven floor before heating the oven interior.
The heat source is located further away from the oven interior.
Adjusting preheat time for a hidden element
Most electric ranges with a hidden bake element take 20 to30 minutes to pre-heat to the set temperature. That means allowing about 15 more minutes of preheating after the oven's preheat signal beeps. Delicate baked goods such as cakes, pies, pastries and souffles need about 45 minutes of pre-heat time for the oven to reach and maintain the temperature you selected.
Oven preheating problems
If your oven just isn't preheating right, check whether the broil element is heating; in many ovens, it also heats during the preheat cycle. You can also remove the oven bottom and check the element for obvious damage.
If you can't determine the cause of the problem and fix it, have a service technician diagnose the problem.
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