The bake element on my Hotpoint RK38T electric oven gets warm but does not get hot. The broil element does get hot. In bake mode, the element shows 59 volts across the element, 111 volts from one lead of the element to neutral, and 51 volts from the other lead of the element to neutral.

I would appreciate comments on the cause and how to fix this issue.

  • 1
    You should only be measuring across the element to check the voltage. Since the voltage is low and the top element heats the contacts in the control relay are probably pitted / arcing creating a high resistance or the connections to the element are failing when this happens with spade lugs they usually melt right at the connection, if this is the case when replacing spade lug connectors on heating elements use high temp not plated copper, the ones I use show 900 degrees.
    – Ed Beal
    Commented Feb 6, 2018 at 20:23
  • remove the oven light bulb. Do the readings change? Commented Feb 6, 2018 at 20:47
  • Ed and Harper, thanks for the comments. Ed, The connections to the element look fine. The controller is model WB22X5134. The oven cycling lamp is on the same leg as the 51 volt reading. The lamp does not light up in bake mode. I disconnected the power to the lead showing 111 volts. Now the element shows 0 volts across the element. Harper, Removing the light bulb did not change the readings.
    – user78602
    Commented Feb 7, 2018 at 16:14

1 Answer 1


Fixed: I replaced the controller.

Edit 7/11/2019

Here is how I determined that it was the controller that was causing the problem.

The broil element worked properly in broil mode. The bake element was not working properly, it got warm but not hot. The cycle lamp was on in broil mode and off in bake mode. This means that the part of the circuit that powers the lamp was not getting proper power in bake mode.

With the breaker off, I disconnected all of the connections to the controller and checked the continuity on the controller in broil mode and in bake mode. There was continuity in broil mode from leg 2 to point C, but not in bake mode. There should be continuity in each mode.

The controller is attached to the panel by two screws accessible from the outside of the panel, behind the control knob. The new controller is designed to replace several controllers of this type. It came with a long shaft with breakoff points and an adaptor kit with parts to fit the shaft to various style knobs. I had to break off part of the shaft to match my original controller.

  • 2
    Please improve your answer by saying how you determined it was the controller that was causing the problem, the steps you took to replace it, etc.
    – Niall C.
    Commented Mar 22, 2018 at 19:42

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