Skip to Content

GE Oven Not Working or Turning On? Here’s Why (+ How to Fix)

The GE brand is famous for its vast range of appliances, including ovens created to give you a stress-free cooking experience. Despite this, GE ovens can prove complex to operate for beginners or present faults and damages like all other appliances. Wrong operation or faults can cause a GE oven not to work or turn on. 

Here are the 5 top causes a GE oven won’t work or turn on:

  1. GE oven has power issues.
  2. The oven controls are not set correctly.
  3. Your oven is set to the sabbath mode.
  4. The bake element is burnt.
  5. The oven has a faulty igniter.

When a GE oven issue is complex, a trained technician is required to resolve it. Luckily, these top 5 causes of a GE oven not turning on can be quickly fixed with easy troubleshooting steps. Find out how in the rest of the article.

GE Oven Has Power Issues

The most obvious reason a GE oven won’t work or turn on is that it isn’t receiving power. This could happen for several reasons: 

  • The socket switch isn’t turned on. 
  • The oven power cable is loose.
  • The power cord is damaged.
  • The fuse is dead, or the circuit breaker tripped.
  • The wall outlet is dead.
  • The electrical supply is insufficient.
  • There’s no gas supply (for gas ovens only).

How To Fix 

Check and fix oven power issues, starting with the simplest to the more complex ones as listed above:

  1. Ensure the socket switch to the wall outlet that supplies your GE oven with power is turned on. If it’s already on, but the oven won’t run, check the next issue.
  2. Ensure the oven power cable is plugged in all the way into the socket. Make sure it isn’t caught on anything and has a straight run into the socket.
  3. Check the oven power cord for damage. If you notice any cut or frayed wires or signs of burning, replace the cable immediately.
  4. Open the circuit breaker housing and check if the oven switch is tripped. A tripped switch will be turned downwards. If so, push it back up to its position. If pushing it back feels stiff, don’t force it. Seek the services of a trained electrician instead. If your oven uses a fuse instead of a circuit breaker, check if the fuse is dead. A dead fuse will have a broken wire or a metallic or dark smear in the holding glass. If so, replace the fuse.
  5. If all the above aren’t the reasons why your oven isn’t receiving power, check if the wall outlet is dead by testing it for electrical flow. The easiest way to test a wall outlet for current is to plug in another appliance and see if it runs. If it doesn’t, you have a dead outlet that needs professional repair.
  6. If you have a gas model, check that the gas hook-up to your house and the oven are turned on. If they’re on, turn on another appliance running on gas to see if it works. If it doesn’t, the gas supply to your house may be cut. Contact the gas supplier.

Test the Outlet for Voltage

If none of the above issues are causing a problem, you should check the outlet you’ve plugged your oven into. If even your wall outlet has no issues, test the outlet for insufficient voltage. GE electric ovens are rated at 240 volts and gas ovens for 120 volts.

Follow these steps to test the outlet for voltage with a multimeter: (Note that the outlet should be turned on).

  1. Understand first the different slots of the wall outlet: the right slot is ‘Neutral’, the left slot is ‘Hot’, and the lower or upper slot is ‘Ground’.
  2. Next, select the AC function of your multimeter by setting it to the voltage range.
  3. Insert the black probe of the multimeter to the ‘Neutral’ slot, followed by the red probe that goes to the ‘Hot’ slot. 
  4. Take the reading of your multimeter. It should be somewhere around 240V. If the reading is around 110V-120V, the wall outlet has a lower voltage than your electric oven requires.

Attention! Don’t test a power outlet for voltage if you aren’t sure you can do it safely. Instead, ask a trained electrician to do the testing. 

The Oven Controls Are Not Set Correctly

For GE ovens with bake and broil options, the oven has to be instructed on what to do by setting the desired oven function. 

If your wall oven or range has electronic controls, you should ensure that the oven function and temperature are correctly selected, and the Start button pressed. If you don’t do this, the oven won’t turn on.

How To Fix 

Especially if you’re a new GE oven user, you should check the “Using the Oven” section of the Owner’s Manual to understand the oven functions.

To set the Bake function:

  1. Press the Bake button on the control panel.
  2. Press the plus (+) or minus (-) TEMP buttons to set the required baking temperature.
  3. Press the Start button to get the oven started.

To set the Broil function:

  1. Press the Broil HI/LO button once if you want HI Broil.
  2. Press the Broil HI/LO button again if you want the LO Broil.
  3. Press the Start button to get the oven started. 

Your Oven Is Set to the Sabbath Mode

Some GE ovens have a Sabbath Mode. This mode allows oven users with religious practices restricting them from operating an appliance to set it for certain functions before the Sabbath.

When a GE oven is set on the Sabbath mode, you won’t be able to use it for other functions because the control panel pads are deactivated. To get the oven running on other functions, you’ll need to deactivate the Sabbath Mode.

How To Fix

You can tell if your oven is set to the Sabbath mode if a backward ‘C’ appears on the left side of the control panel display.

Follow these steps to deactivate the Sabbath mode:

  1. Press the bake and broil buttons simultaneously until you see ‘SF’ on the display. 
  2. Press ‘Delay Start’ until ’12 Shdn’ (‘No Shdn’) appears.
  3. Press ‘Start’. The backward ‘C’ will disappear, activating the normal oven function. 

If your GE oven has the Sabbath mode, you’ll find these steps in the owner’s manual. You can also watch this YouTube video from GE Appliances for a visual demonstration: 

The Bake Element Is Burnt

A functional GE oven bake element will glow orange when heated. If you’ve turned on your oven and started a baking cycle, but your oven won’t turn on, the bake element could be burnt. 

A burned bake element may present signs of damage such as blisters, breakages, or holes. If the component doesn’t show any signs of damage but still won’t glow with heat, you need to test it for continuity. If no current is detected you’ll have to replace it.

How To Fix

Follow these steps to check the bake element for damage, test it for continuity, and replace it if needed:

  1. Switch off the current supply to the oven and unplug. You can also opt to cut off power to the range by turning off the circuit breaker.
  2. Take out the racks from the oven. Doing this’ll make it easier to reach the bake element.
  3. Reach the bake element at the bottom of the oven. You’ll notice the coil element attached to the back wall of the oven. If the element is hidden by the lower panel, lift the panel to reach it.
  4. Check if the bake element has any blisters, cracks, or breaks. If so, you’ll have to replace it. If no signs of damage are present, proceed to test the bake element for continuity. 
  5. Unscrew the bake element from the oven wall. 
  6. Remove the wires from the element. Ensure they don’t sink back into the oven wall.
  7. Turn the multimeter to the lowest setting for ohms of resistance.
  8. Use the multimeter probes to touch each of the bake element terminals. If the reading is anywhere between 0 ohms and 50 ohms, the element is sound. If the multimeter indicator doesn’t move, the element is bad, and you need to replace it. 
  9. Order a compatible GE bake element for your oven and fix it where the old one was.
  10. Resume baking operation.

See this YouTube video from RepairClinic on how to test an oven element for continuity: 

Note: A similar process is used to test and replace a burnt broiler element at the top of the oven.

The Oven Has a Faulty Igniter 

This issue only affects GE gas ovens and is the most common reason a gas oven won’t work or turn on. A gas oven igniter has two main functions:

  • Draw electricity through the safety valve to run the oven.
  • Heat up to ignite the gas burner.

If the igniter is faulty, it won’t perform these functions.  You won’t hear the igniter click, and the oven won’t turn on. 

How To Fix 

The first thing to do if your GE gas oven igniter doesn’t start the oven is to turn back the gas knob to the off position to prevent the spread of gas.

Next, determine the extent of damage to the ignitor by checking these possible situations:

  • The igniter glows for more than a minute but doesn’t ignite the gas burner. This means the ignitor isn’t strong enough for this function. You have to replace it.
  • The igniter doesn’t turn on at all. This means it’s dead, and you need to replace it.

To replace an oven igniter, follow these steps:

  1. Turn off the power to the oven and unplug. 
  2. Remove the broiler drawer to access the cabinet.
  3. Unscrew to release the valve protection.
  4. Remove the screws securing the wire cover and set it aside.
  5. Disconnect the valve wires and pull the igniter wire through the hole. 
  6. Press the tabs on the connector to release the wire.
  7. Remove the screws holding the igniter to the burner to release it.
  8. Screw the new igniter where the old one was on the burner. Then follow the reverse steps to put everything back in its place.

If these steps seem a bit complicated, you can follow a visual demonstration in this YouTube video from RepairClinic: 

GE Oven Not Working But Broiler Works

There are two main reasons your GE oven may not be working, but the broiler does:

  1. The bake element is burnt, so current isn’t flowing to heat the element. You’ll need to replace the bake element in this case.
  2. The oven is working in broiler mode. According to GE Appliances, the bake element doesn’t work during the broil cycle.

GE Oven Not Working After Power Outage

There are 3 key reasons your GE oven isn’t working after a power outage:

  1. The oven was set for a timed operation before the power outage. In such cases, the clock will keep flashing and has to be reset, and so do all the other programmed functions.
  2. The oven was set in the Sabbath mode. In this case, the oven automatically turns off. You’ll need to reset the controls again.
  3. The circuit breaker tripped. This happens due to a power surge. The circuit breaker shuts off the current to protect the appliances. You need to reset the circuit breaker.

GE Oven Not Working But Stove Is

If your GE oven isn’t working, but the stove is, these six reasons could be the cause:

  1. The main gas regulator could be in the ‘off’ instead of the ‘on’ position. This especially happens with new installations.
  2. The regulator valve may be turned off. The burners will still work, but the oven won’t. 
  3. The oven controls aren’t correctly set. The controls should be set for bake or broil.
  4. The oven door may be in the locked position. This applies to self-clean ranges.
  5. The oven knobs may be in the wrong position.
  6. The oven Glow-Bar igniter may have malfunctioned.

GE Oven Not Working After Self Clean

There are two possible reasons your GE oven isn’t working after self-clean:

  1. The oven is still within the 30-90 minutes cooling time after a self-clean cycle.
  2. The oven needs resetting. You can either disconnect the oven for 30 seconds or set a short self-clean cycle (1-2 hours).

GE Oven Bake Not Working

If your GE oven bake isn’t working:

  1. The bake element may be damaged.
  2. The oven controls may not be correctly set to the bake or broil functions.
  3. The oven door may be in the locked position in self-clean ranges.
  4. The oven knobs may be in the wrong position.

If any of these causes don’t resolve your GE oven issue, consult a professional oven technician immediately.