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I own an appartment in the residential, 2-storey building in Edmonton, AB, Canada. There is an older oven that always worked well with no issues. I recently cleaned it thoroughly.

In the process, I unscrewed 2 crews that hold the top heating element and after cleaning, screwed them back in. Now, when I turn the oven back it works fine for about 10-12 minutes, but then the power in the whole appartment goes off. After about 15-20 minutes the power comes back on. No breakers are tripped. I have 2 questions:

  1. Obviously, my removing the heating element caused some issues with the oven. What could they be? Should resetting the element help? Should I replace the heating element? Should I replace the stove?
  2. Why would this issue cause the power in the whole appartment to go off. When the power goes off, no breakers are tripped and the power loss is confined to my appartment only.

Thank you for your help.

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Had an electrician over who confirmed that the oven and all the wiring in the apartment was in perfect condition. He was puzzled himself, then told to me to hang on and dialed some phone number and after 20 minutes on the phone he found the solution.

Turns out that the power company placed a limiter on my apartment's line because the new renter picked up the power service a bit later than the rules allowed. Basically if one renter stops his/her power service and there is no one who picks up the power service within few weeks, the power company (Epcor in Edmonton) places a limiter on the line. You still get the power at the apartment but if you exceed a certain power flow - the limiter shuts down the power in your unit. Here is more about this: https://www.epcor.com/learn/meters/Pages/power-meter-limiters.aspx

Thank you all for your suggestions. Lesson learned.

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I doubt that this problem is being cause by your cleaning the oven at all. You need an electrician to check your electrical service. I suspect you need a panel upgrade and possibly a service up grade.

  • Thank you Paul. Why would a panel upgrade be needed? I mean the appartment is not new (built in 1979) but why would the panel need an upgrade? Is upgrade the same as replacement? Also what does "service upgrade" mean? – myroslav Nov 23 '17 at 17:34
  • Whenever I look at problems like this, more often than not I see a major problem in the panel. This kind of problem is so severe that it will damage the panel or other fundamental component. The service includes the panel itself and extends to the meter and on to the weather head or to the conductors that go underground to the utility transformer. – Paul Logan Nov 24 '17 at 3:46
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You didn't state your location, but you also didn't call it a hob, so I'm guessing not UK. Some countries, particularly the ones that follow European wiring methods, use a GFCI, or they call it an RCD that protects the whole house/building. That could be tripping from a ground fault, which would match up with the condition you descrive.

Otherwise, you're looking at the symptom rather than the problem.

There is a defect in your electric meter or electrical panel. The defect is revealed when you put a high load on it, but the load isn't the defect.

There is nothing in consumer-tier panels that would reset itself. However a wiring defect such as a loose connection may break when it heats up, and reconnect when it cools down.

  • Would you agree that there is an issue bigger than the oven itself and I should get an electrician in to check this out? – myroslav Nov 23 '17 at 21:48
  • @myroslav Oh yeah. And he should be looking in the meter pan and the main lugs in the service panel (and subpanel feed if one of those is involved. This might even be on the power company side, and the change in weather might be a factor. – Harper Nov 23 '17 at 21:54
  • That's interesting. Thank you for the advice Harper. I will try to remember to post the resolution here. – myroslav Nov 23 '17 at 23:09
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The heating elements most likely have an obstruction between the element and the electrical connection for the element. OR the cleaning process damaged the elements. My advice before hiring an expensive electrician if you have skills on diagnostics...first check all element connectors to ensure no residual metal from the stove covers has been placed between the connector and the element. This can cause grounding and shut the stoves trip GSFI. If no issues are found, look at the connectors from service to stove. If the breakers in the home are not tripping it is a issue at the stove. So stove replacement or repair is the best possible action to solve issues.

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