Tuesday, May 12, 2009
While I was heating our ham and bean soup on the stove (between 6 and 7 on the front burner), shortly after I decided to and added about a pound of lentils to add some more oomph to it, since much of the beans and ham had been eaten the first time we had it, the stove made an electrical popping sound and blew the soup up and out of the pot. I was near the kitchen door, setting scraps on the counter for the chickens, Alexander was across from the stove at the dishwasher (far enough away to be unharmed). As my back was to it and Alexander was looking at it, he said "The stove just exploded!"
I turned and looked and saw the soup everywhere on the range, dripping down the front and on the floor out about two feet in all directions. I am thankful that the soup was still cool, it hadn't even started bubbling, so nobody was burned from it.
However, when I went to the stove to turn it off, sending Alexander out of the room from the kitchen door nearest him and having him set up the gate so his younger siblings wouldn't come in the other way, and lifted up the pot to remove it to another burner while I took a look, the soup began to stream out of the bottom of the pot. It may have been the soup draining into the burner that put out the fire.
I found a bowl, put the pot over it to drain in there, called Rich and started taking pictures. The clock and oven light were still on, so it didn't blow a fuse or short out the range. It appears that the burner was super energized or powered in some way. The burner actually had a hole burned through it, another hole eaten away in the side of part of a coil and the pot burned all the way through.
I took this picture after we had unplugged the range so I could dig the lentils out to show the hole.
Fortunately, it was one of my older, cheap pots, instead of my nicer ones. Though, because of the aluminum in it, none of the soup was salvageable, even for the chickens. This was so very sad, because that was a great soup and we couldn't even get eggs from it. Not to mention the waste of the lentils. We ate tuna sandwiches on some really nice bread we had just made to go with the soup and carrot sticks for dinner instead.
Here is a closeup of the hole in the bottom of the pot itself.
I'm just glad that I forgot to put in my French green lentils, as I had intended, and used the less expensive brown lentils. They were actually embedded in the burner!
A quick Swagbucks search for our GE Hotpoint model #R B757B H1WH and the word recall brought up a recall from four and a half years ago. When we called, they said our serial number wasn't affected. It is the same kind of problem that the other ranges were having, just in a different area, however, the burner on the stove rather than the element in the oven. Which makes me wonder if there shouldn't be another recall.
We have called GE's recall hotline and they said they'd come out and look at it tomorrow, but that since it is not affected by the recall, we would have to pay for any repairs. Since we were using the stove in the manner which it should be used, none of our breakers blew and the electricity was still running properly in the range, I suspect the problem is in the appliance itself. We shall see how they handle it tomorrow. If they are rude or unhelpful or otherwise nasty, I will be sure to let you know about it so you know what to expect if you have a problem with one of their appliances.
Until we get this fixed or replaced, all our meals will come out of the crock pot, the stand alone roaster or our grill. In our camping stuff, we have a butane single burner, which we might be able to use to make rice or pasta or something like that. We might do some cooking over fire in either the fireplace or our fire pit outside. This is where having a wood burning cook stove would come in handy. In our dream house, we have not only our fireplace and wood burning furnace as we do here, but also at least one wood stove with a cook top, a wood burning oven for pizzas and bread (and power outages) and an outdoor kitchen with a gas grill, charcoal grill a smoker and access to the indoor wood burning oven. Tonight, I need to remember to set up the crock pot to have oatmeal for breakfast for the children in the morning.
Those of you who know the details of some of the things that have been going on in our family lately will recognize this as one more thing being added to us. Please pray for our protection. So far our family's finances, health and lives have been preserved and we are so grateful to God for that. This could have been so much worse. The stories I read of other people's experiences with this range involved fires that could not be put out for an excessively long time. I am thankful that the soup was still cool and wet, as that may have helped put out the fire.
- Big Daddy Andy (in Aberdeen)
The lentils stuck in the coil, though, that makes me laugh a little.