Author Topic: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch  (Read 7199 times)

MandalayVA

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1575
  • Location: Orlando FL
My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« on: November 04, 2014, 11:59:31 AM »
When we were first looking at our condo, I was delighted to see a Jenn-Air gas range in the kitchen island.  I knew it was a high-end brand and had always heard good things about it.

Last year after a power failure I found that the digital control panel didn't work all the way.  I could turn on the oven and control the temperature but that was it.  After a couple more oven uses I couldn't get the oven to turn on.  There was also a (not very good) grill taking up two burner spaces.  So I started researching, and what I found horrified me.

Jenn-Air was bought out by Whirlpool a few years ago, and the issue with the control panel seems to be universal.  Many people wrote about replacing it three or four times--at $800 a pop.  Oh--did I mention that the range has a built-in downdraft?  Guess which is the ONLY company that currently makes those type of slide-in ranges?  If you guessed Jenn-Air, collect your prize!

"Let's just buy a new stove," said Mr. Mandalay.  Yes, let's just buy a THREE THOUSAND DOLLAR RANGE WHOSE CONTROL PANEL WILL GO KAPUT IN LESS THAN A YEAR.

The way I see it, we have three options, all of which has me cowering against the facepunch:

1.  Get someone to swap out the grill for burners and install a new control panel with added insulation (this seems to circumvent the problem).  Cost:  around $1500 including parts.

2.  Get another Jenn-Air, get the installer to put insulation in the control panel.  Cost:  around $3500 with insulation.

3.  Bite the bullet, seal off the downdraft vent and get a different range.  Cost:  maybe $1500, but no ventilation.

If I have to get fucked over this, can someone maybe offer me lube?

Jack

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4734
  • Location: Atlanta, GA
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #1 on: November 04, 2014, 12:10:08 PM »
Can you talk to your condo association / property maintenance guy about getting a proper overhead vent? Can you install a control panel (and insulation) yourself? Since the issue appears to be an endemic design flaw, can you complain to somebody and get Jenn-Air to recall their product?

Spork

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5753
    • Spork In The Eye
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #2 on: November 04, 2014, 12:11:15 PM »
Is overhead venting even remotely an option?  I only ask because... everyone I've ever known that had downdraft ended up hating it.  (This is by no means a scientific evaluation...  I've never had one... they may be fine.)

Future Lazy

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 350
  • Age: 27
  • Location: Northglenn, Colorado
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #3 on: November 04, 2014, 12:15:04 PM »
3.  Bite the bullet, seal off the downdraft vent and get a different range.  Cost:  maybe $1500, but no ventilation.

My mom's landlords have a Jenn-Air that they've replaced as well. This would be the best thing to do, but there's another design feature you need to look out for - they have a unique size, and if the kitchen you have was nicely designed around this Jenn-Air oven's size, then you might run into problems over that as well. Such was the case with the landlords - they decided to replace with another Jenn-Air because of the width of the range and also because of the downdraft.

However, imo, if at all possible, abandon ship and get a different brand and install the ventilation.

GizmoTX

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1369
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #4 on: November 04, 2014, 12:57:51 PM »
I would not keep repairing a bad design. Did that with a dishwasher, but never again.

Measure the space to determine if you are stuck with Jennair dimensions for a replacement.
See if there's 240 power available or if gas is your only choice. If you have 240, consider induction as another option.

Gas really needs a vented hood. Electric can get by with unvented. An overhead hood is best, but there are popup vents available from other than Jennair that can be installed separately.


dragoncar

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8633
  • Registered member
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #5 on: November 04, 2014, 04:44:20 PM »
I dislike downdraft vents, don't even use mine, but you can get them as standalone vents.  You could replace the range with a standalone vent, cooktop, and oven -- this would require some cabinet work, obviously.  But then you could pick your brand and a single failure wouldn't kill all three devices.

Do you have an active home warranty?

Gas really needs a vented hood.

How risky is it that I don't use mine?  It's an open kitchen, so I'm sure I'm creating some extra moisture/combustion byproducts, but i don't think 10-15 min of cooking is unsafe here.  When I turn on my downdraft, it sucks the fire to the side anways.

MayDay

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4001
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #6 on: November 04, 2014, 05:48:30 PM »
I'm on my scond hues with a gas range, and have never had a real exhaust fan (just the microwave filter/circulate kind).  In fact I have never lived in a house with a real vent fan. 

I thought they were the kind of things that only really fancy kitchens have.  If it's a safety issue, why don't more houses have them?

dragoncar

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8633
  • Registered member
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #7 on: November 04, 2014, 06:43:20 PM »
I'm on my scond hues with a gas range, and have never had a real exhaust fan (just the microwave filter/circulate kind).  In fact I have never lived in a house with a real vent fan. 

I thought they were the kind of things that only really fancy kitchens have.  If it's a safety issue, why don't more houses have them?

I'm sure code requires them... They cost money to install so that's why

Goldielocks

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 6303
  • Location: BC
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #8 on: November 04, 2014, 07:28:09 PM »
You can buy a down vent separately now too.  or another manufacturer...

They pop up from the counter, and retract, allowing a lot more range options.  The down vent is/can be pricey..   


-2100789/KGCD807XSS/]http://www.kitchenaid.ca/en_CA/shop/-[KGCD807XSS]-2100789/KGCD807XSS/
-2101737/KXD4636YSS/]http://www.kitchenaid.ca/en_CA/shop/-[KXD4636YSS]-2101737/KXD4636YSS/

I would rather go with a new range, and install a ventless draft (to carbon filter) over.

GizmoTX

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1369
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #9 on: November 04, 2014, 09:36:46 PM »
Vent hoods are anti-grease devices; without them, cooking byproducts will deposit themselves all over your kitchen surfaces. Odors too.

Penny Lane

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 203
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #10 on: November 05, 2014, 06:40:49 AM »
How maddening that this relatively new appliance has failed!  Induction cooking is interesting-- I have no experience, but friends love it.  I have propane for a 17 year old pro made for small inns, I think, no "control panels", never needs servicing.  If you have a powerful vent, you do need to be sure there is no back draft from your furnace; I sometimes need to crack a window if I need it on a long time.  It's amazing how much "grease" gets up into the vent-- mine comes apart to clean--so I think that's another reason not to have a down vent.

Tetsuya Hondo

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 503
  • Location: 1960's Tokyo on the Bad Side of Town
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #11 on: November 05, 2014, 07:23:36 AM »
Don't assume that you need to pay someone do fix your range. I'm not even remotely handy (but thanks to this blog, I've been trying lately), but I recently replaced a control panel in a GE wall oven. It took five minutes and the part was only a $100.

Ovens and ranges are actually pretty simple machines.

There are tons of online resources that walk you through how to do it and parts are widely available. For example:
http://www.repairclinic.com/Shop-For-Parts/a13b103c63/Jenn-Air-Range-Stove-Oven-Touchpad-Parts

Dyk

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 113
  • Age: 48
  • Location: Grand Haven, MI
  • Starting late, w/ a family, but get out of the way
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #12 on: November 05, 2014, 07:25:40 AM »
We moved into our house with a gas range in the kitchen island, no venting at all.  For what it is worth, we are a sample size of 1, but we have had no issues at all.  We cook a lot for a family of 7.  (So of your 3 options, I choose #3)

But first, check out a new option - #4.  Which would be what Tetsuya Hondo just posted.  Or, when our control board died, the local repair company (before I read this blog I simply called them, how stupid!) told me it was the board and they could no longer buy the part.  They were right, but I found a place to repair it:  http://www.fixyourboard.com/boards.html .  We had to send it out for 1-2 weeks, for a flat fee of $160, but it worked awesome!  It saved us the $1,000+ for a new stove.  It has been running for about 1 year now since the repair.

Maybe you could try this, and look online to help with adding the insulation to prevent the problem again.

(I can't believe people buy $3,000 stoves with 1 year warranties . . . . . My stove is 10ish years old, but looks like new .... yet they don't make parts for it ..... crazy)
Edit:  Spork, just read your entry below.  I like your thinking, why does a stove need a control board .... I will look for antique when I need to replace.
« Last Edit: November 05, 2014, 07:54:14 AM by Dyk »

Spork

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5753
    • Spork In The Eye
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #13 on: November 05, 2014, 07:39:50 AM »
Don't assume that you need to pay someone do fix your range. I'm not even remotely handy (but thanks to this blog, I've been trying lately), but I recently replaced a control panel in a GE wall oven. It took five minutes and the part was only a $100.

Ovens and ranges are actually pretty simple machines.

There are tons of online resources that walk you through how to do it and parts are widely available. For example:
http://www.repairclinic.com/Shop-For-Parts/a13b103c63/Jenn-Air-Range-Stove-Oven-Touchpad-Parts

minirant:
The problem isn't difficulty.  It's failure rate and cost of parts.  Appliances in general (and stoves in particular) DO NOT NEED control boards.  And worse: if they are 240v, it is VERY difficult to protect them from power surges/dropouts.

As you say: these devices are very simple.   My suggestion for stoves is always: buy high end antique for cheap.

I sort of worry LED lighting will have the same issues... where they build very expensive, cost-saving lighting that lasts 30 years ... and is killed in a fraction of that by crappy electrical supply.  Time will tell.

MandalayVA

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1575
  • Location: Orlando FL
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #14 on: November 05, 2014, 07:45:10 AM »
I've been poking around online and it seems that the control panels are relatively easy to fix or replace, including using high heat silicone to insulate them.  It's intriguing my inner badass enough to want to attempt it.  Thanks for the replies and I'll keep you posted on whether or not I pull the DIY trigger on this!

FarmerPete

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 346
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #15 on: November 05, 2014, 08:21:51 AM »
I've been poking around online and it seems that the control panels are relatively easy to fix or replace, including using high heat silicone to insulate them.  It's intriguing my inner badass enough to want to attempt it.  Thanks for the replies and I'll keep you posted on whether or not I pull the DIY trigger on this!

Just do it already.  You'll learn something, and you'll probably save a small fortune.  These kinds of life skills will go a LONG way to help you become FI.

Spork

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5753
    • Spork In The Eye
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #16 on: November 05, 2014, 08:26:36 AM »
I've been poking around online and it seems that the control panels are relatively easy to fix or replace, including using high heat silicone to insulate them.  It's intriguing my inner badass enough to want to attempt it.  Thanks for the replies and I'll keep you posted on whether or not I pull the DIY trigger on this!

How much do the replacement panels run?

Tetsuya Hondo

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 503
  • Location: 1960's Tokyo on the Bad Side of Town
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #17 on: November 05, 2014, 10:03:38 AM »
I've been poking around online and it seems that the control panels are relatively easy to fix or replace, including using high heat silicone to insulate them.  It's intriguing my inner badass enough to want to attempt it.  Thanks for the replies and I'll keep you posted on whether or not I pull the DIY trigger on this!

Just do it already.  You'll learn something, and you'll probably save a small fortune.  These kinds of life skills will go a LONG way to help you become FI.

Yeah, do it. All the cool kids are doing it.

Again, I can barely operate a screwdriver, so when I swapped out the control board, I felt like a god. And prior to realizing that it was an easy DIY fix, I was shopping for new $1500 ovens myself.

Speaking of, I wonder how many people throw out easily fixable ovens and ranges over stuff like this? You could probably pick up some really nice appliances for next to nothing and make a quick repair or two. Very MMM.

madage

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 405
  • Location: TX
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #18 on: November 05, 2014, 01:22:37 PM »
Just chiming in to say two things:
1. Jenn-Air should never, under any circumstances, be considered a high-end brand. There may have been a time, but that time has long passed. Their repair record is atrocious.
2. I really love my electric KitchenAid downdraft smooth cooktop (replaced a crappy, you guessed it, Jenn-Air).

MandalayVA

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1575
  • Location: Orlando FL
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #19 on: November 05, 2014, 02:41:21 PM »
I've been poking around online and it seems that the control panels are relatively easy to fix or replace, including using high heat silicone to insulate them.  It's intriguing my inner badass enough to want to attempt it.  Thanks for the replies and I'll keep you posted on whether or not I pull the DIY trigger on this!

How much do the replacement panels run?

About $200.  I want to try fixing the existing one first before going in for a new one.

Spork

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 5753
    • Spork In The Eye
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #20 on: November 05, 2014, 03:21:44 PM »
I've been poking around online and it seems that the control panels are relatively easy to fix or replace, including using high heat silicone to insulate them.  It's intriguing my inner badass enough to want to attempt it.  Thanks for the replies and I'll keep you posted on whether or not I pull the DIY trigger on this!

How much do the replacement panels run?

About $200.  I want to try fixing the existing one first before going in for a new one.

for $200-400 you can usually get a nice looking vintage range that will work for 100 more years.  A little more if you want it mint condition... (but not a lot more).
http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/share-your-badassity/how-your-kitchen-can-be-hip-cool-retro-and-still-have-lip-hair/msg53341/#msg53341

The Architect

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 120
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #21 on: November 05, 2014, 03:39:02 PM »
I'm on my scond hues with a gas range, and have never had a real exhaust fan (just the microwave filter/circulate kind).  In fact I have never lived in a house with a real vent fan. 

I thought they were the kind of things that only really fancy kitchens have.  If it's a safety issue, why don't more houses have them?

Those microwave exhaust fans often are real exhaust fans. They frequently connect to ducting in the cabinets/ceiling above the microwave. Vent fans are required by code above stoves (or downdraft, but I don't know much about that).

The condo association probably won't know what they are, but usually there are good reasons for not venting above the range. Like for a stove placed on an island, or the amount of soffit you'd need to build to get a vent out so it's more than 3'-0" (horizontal) from any operable window/door.

Guses

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 917
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #22 on: November 05, 2014, 03:47:48 PM »
Have you written a letter to Jenn-Air about the issue?

When I had a problem with a recent Kenmore fridge with the mainboard (300$ repair), they ended up paying for the cost of the parts (180$) after I complained to them. No way a 3 year old fridge should break like that and neither should your oven. 

Do you have any consumer protection rights agencies in your area that could help you out? From what you are describing, the problem appears to be frequent and known by the company. Where I live, you could sue for "unreasonable product life compared to reasonable life expectancy" and likely win the case (they pay the depreciated value of your stove) if the stove is fairly recent.
« Last Edit: November 05, 2014, 03:50:47 PM by Guses »

backandforth

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 53
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #23 on: November 06, 2014, 01:06:25 PM »
For us Sears Outlet was the answer.

Had similar issue with our old Jenn air came with the house, it barely worked and after shopped around for a while, we finally found a floor model at Sears outlet for 50%. It has a small dent on the side but seriously nobody can see it once it's put in between the cabinets! Then got an extra 10% of 50% off price because it was a long weekend holiday promotion, after a some bargaining (30 minutes before store closes on the Sunday, last day of the promotion), got like a 40% off a 5 year protection plan from Sears. All in all a good deal. We've bought it about 6 months ago, so far so good.

MandalayVA

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1575
  • Location: Orlando FL
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #24 on: November 06, 2014, 01:15:30 PM »
For us Sears Outlet was the answer.

Had similar issue with our old Jenn air came with the house, it barely worked and after shopped around for a while, we finally found a floor model at Sears outlet for 50%. It has a small dent on the side but seriously nobody can see it once it's put in between the cabinets! Then got an extra 10% of 50% off price because it was a long weekend holiday promotion, after a some bargaining (30 minutes before store closes on the Sunday, last day of the promotion), got like a 40% off a 5 year protection plan from Sears. All in all a good deal. We've bought it about 6 months ago, so far so good.

I'll keep that in mind.  I really want to get rid of the grill so that might be the way to go--thanks!

Mother Fussbudget

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 828
  • Age: 57
  • Location: Indianapolis, IN
Re: My gas range is about to give me a massive facepunch
« Reply #25 on: November 06, 2014, 01:40:41 PM »
The new house I just bought (gulp!) has a Jenn-Air-like stove with one of those grill things taking up one-half of the top surface.  I already pulled it out to see how it connects, and will either a) pull it out, and replace it with a standard 'burner' unit obtained from the local 'Re-store' used hardware & appliances store, or b) find a decent replacement stove on Craigslist.   

And yes, I'll have to put in a down-draft vent - probably one of the pop-up variety.  We'll see what HomeCreepo and Lowes have in-stock, and maybe look around at the Re-store / Habitat for Humanity Store have to offer.