How to Replace an Oven Light Bulb in 5 Steps

Register Appliance
September 8, 2023
Oven Repair

It’s always frustrating when something goes wrong with your oven, but a broken oven light bulb is easily fixed! You might be tempted just to leave it because it doesn’t affect the actual cooking, but an oven light makes using your oven much easier. Just follow our simple, step-by-step guide to replacing your oven light bulb. 

Before You Begin

Before you jump right into replacing your oven light bulb, it’s important to be sure that the bulb is the source of your problem! Remember, if the bulb is faulty, it shouldn’t affect any other parts of the oven. Check if your oven is heating correctly and that the fan is functioning. If everything else is working fine, you only need to replace the bulb!

You Will Need:

  • An oven mitt or old cloth (something thick enough to protect your hand from any broken glass).
  • Pliers
  • Screwdriver
  • A replacement bulb – you can determine the correct type and wattage to buy by looking at your oven manual. Replacement bulbs can be purchased from your local hardware store or online. 

Step 1 –  Disconnect Your Oven

Safety is paramount when working with electrical appliances! If your oven can be unplugged, remove the plug from the electrical outlet. If it’s hard-wired, as many ovens are, you’ll need to turn off the circuit breaker.

To do this:

  • Locate your electrical panel. 
  • Look for the circuit breaker labeled ‘oven’ or ‘range.’ 
  • Flip the breaker into the ‘off’ position.
  • Check that the power is off. If your oven has a clock display, this should now be off. If not, try turning your oven on and seeing if it begins to heat up. If not, your oven is now safely disconnected.

Note: If your oven has been used recently, wait for it to cool down fully before working on it to avoid accidental burns. 

Step 2 – Get Access to the Bulb

The next step is to locate and gain access to the broken bulb. The location of oven light bulbs can vary depending on the make and model of your oven. In most cases, the bulb will be located either on the top of the oven cavity or on the back wall in the center or in one of the corners. If you’re having difficulty locating the bulb, try checking the user manual for its specific location.

You may need to remove your oven racks or trays to access the bulb and give you enough space to work. 

Once you’ve located the bulb, there will usually be a glass cover or shield over the bulb that must be removed before you can replace the bulb itself. This is in place to protect the bulb from grease and food splatter during the cooking process and also prevents the bulb from being knocked or damaged.

The method to remove the bulb cover varies depending on the oven, but in most cases, it will simply unscrew counterclockwise. In some instances, there might be clips or screws securing the cover. 

Step 3 – Remove the Old Bulb

Once the cover is removed, you can then access and remove the old bulb. Hand protection is essential here in case of cracks or breaks in the glass. To remove it:

  • After wrapping your hand in a cloth or mitt, unscrew the bulb. 
  • If it appears stuck, try moving it back and forth gently before turning. 
  • If the bulb is broken, you may need to use pliers to remove the bulb’s base.

Step 4 – Put the New Bulb in Place

Once you’ve removed the old bulb, it’s time to put the new one in its place!

Firstly, check that the new bulb you’ve purchased is compatible with the oven. It’s essential that it’s the same wattage and type, as using something not recommended can be a fire hazard.

If it is a halogen-type bulb, avoiding touching it with your bare skin is essential. This is because it can transfer natural skin oils to the surface of the bulb, which can then lead to hot spots when the bulb is on. This can reduce the bulb’s life or even cause it to crack and explode!

Holding the new bulb with a cloth or oven mitt, screw it in clockwise, ensuring it is seated firmly in place.

Step 5 – Test the New Bulb

Now that the new bulb is in place, you must test it to ensure everything works! However, you’ll need to put everything back together and restore power first. To do this:

  • Replace the bulb cover that you removed in Step 2. If it was screwed or clipped on, ensure everything is put back in the correct place. 
  • Return any trays or racks you removed to gain access to the bulb. 
  • Restore power to your oven by turning it back on or flipping the ‘oven’ switch on your circuit breaker. 
  • Turn your oven on to see if the oven light is working again.

What If It Still Isn’t Working?

If you’ve gone through all the steps and replaced the bulb and it still isn’t working, there could be a more serious issue. Some potential causes include:

  • A faulty door switch
  • A corroded bulb socket
  • Wiring issues
  • A blown fuse

Most of these issues will require a professional electrician to fix, but you can also consult your user’s manual to help you find a solution.

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