A D V E R T I S E M E N T


Author Topic: Question about my home oven and its limitations  (Read 295 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Online kuhne

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 108
  • I Love Pizza!
Question about my home oven and its limitations
« on: April 18, 2017, 10:17:26 PM »
So today a repair guy came to check my oven, my oven was only getting about 350 degrees or a bit more. When the technician came, he noticed the installation was a bit wrong, basically he said there wasn't enough airflow (not sure this is the case, he didn't seem to know that much to be honest) but when he removed the metal "floor" of the oven, exposing the flame in the bottom, the temperature of the oven went crazy fast close to 500 degrees. When he put the floor again, then temperature stopped the moment he did. He said that there wasn't good airflow and that I needed to hire someone to reinstall the oven etc... basically stuff I wont do, at least not anytime soon, plus my wife uses that oven for work and she likes it just the way it is.

So here's a question that the guy somehow didn't seem to know the answer to.

Could I just use the oven without that metal floor when I want to bake a pizza? After all, the oven has racks and I would probably put a stone or a steel on top of the racks and then the pizza, so there isn't any contact with the flame, plus the flame is way below.

Something else I figured I could do was preheat the oven without the metal floor and then when it reaches the desired temp I just place it again, although I'm not sure the temp will hold for long this way.

So that's my question. Is there any problem in removing that part of the oven to get it to go higher? Is there any risk? Any reason to why I shouldn't do it?


Thanks!

Online kuhne

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 108
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: Question about my home oven and its limitations
« Reply #1 on: April 18, 2017, 11:05:31 PM »
Just to update, its crazy because I just tried to preheat the oven to 550 farenheit without that lid on the bottom and it got to 550 very quickly. Of course the wife said "omggg so dangeroussss!!" To me it makes no sense that it would be dangerous, sure the flame down below is visible and if you are making something juicy and drops oil or whatever and lands on top of the flame it could be a problem. But is it really dangerous?

Offline barryvabeach

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 938
Re: Question about my home oven and its limitations
« Reply #2 on: April 19, 2017, 06:52:17 AM »
Can you tell us what brand of oven, and take some photos of the oven without the floor in place and the burners going?  My suggestion is to first get someone to look at it who knows what they are doing.  It sounds like the person you had was not all that sure about things.   The primary issue is that the burners for the oven need to get a certain amount of oxygen - if they don't the flame will be yellow and orange instead of blue.  When it burns like that, it gives off carbon monoxide - which is very bad.  So it is quite possible that it is dangerous to use it with the floor in place.   

Online kuhne

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 108
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: Question about my home oven and its limitations
« Reply #3 on: April 19, 2017, 11:41:10 AM »
Thanks! I just took a few pics and a video, I even show the top broiler working. I removed the the shelves and the metal floor in the bottom to expose the bottom burner and made a video of my preheating it just for a little bit so you can see how it turns on.

When it is used without the metal flooring, it reaches 550 Fahrenheit rather quickly. With that metal floor on, it stays about 350-70 and never goes past that.

I think there is a problem with airflow with the original installation, there is an air escape that goes to the outside but it obviously isn't working well, as far as I can tell nothing is clogged up.

If it's usable without the bottom flooring from time to time, I guess I am ok with that, since the wife never uses temps over 370 anyway, she is fine with the way it was.

Sadly, as far as getting someone who seems to know what they are doing, he was supposed to be it... he was right in that there isn't anything wrong with the oven rather with the installation and air flow and since he is a technician there is nothing for him to fix, I would need to get some workers and more complicated things like that. Sounds to me like a good excuse to finally go and buy an electric oven and rid myself of gas for good in the kitchen but I'll probably wait a bit for that since I have many expenses at the moment.

The video is on a dropbox link, please check it out, I'd look at the pictures first, as they show the oven assembled with the shelves and floor, the video is with the oven disassembled and operating.

Here it is.

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/b9q8xrjs8y0sxis/AABRSVwnvmgT1xI3SrtXu29ma?dl=0


Thanks again.












Offline vtsteve

  • Supporting Member
  • *
  • Posts: 911
  • Location: Vermont, USA
Re: Question about my home oven and its limitations
« Reply #4 on: April 19, 2017, 01:01:19 PM »
I don't see anything obvious... one possibility (?) is that it's set up for propane, but you're connected to natural gas. If that's the case, you can swap out (or drill out) the orifices to the correct size, and get the rated BTUs out of all the burners. Does it take a long time to bring a pot of water to a boil?

Edit: What country are you in, and what make is the oven?

Edit: Oops, wall oven (missed it in the first photo)
« Last Edit: April 19, 2017, 02:30:48 PM by vtsteve »
In grams we trust.

A D V E R T I S E M E N T


Online kuhne

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 108
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: Question about my home oven and its limitations
« Reply #5 on: April 19, 2017, 01:27:37 PM »
Hi, thanks. I am not entirely sure the propane thing could be an issue because when everything was installed here, laundry stuff, water heater, stove and oven were all natural gas. Since then I've changed to a new electric stove and now the oven is the only gas product inside the kitchen.

The oven is GE, soft touch, I don't have the model with me right now, Ill post it later when I get back to the house. I am in Mexico.

Do you see anything that could be dangerous about the situation? The wife likes using the oven with that floor on the bottom but she doesn't get it higher than 190 anyway, she preheats to that temperature and the oven manages to get there, very slowly but it gets there, so its not like the oven is trying to go higher and higher (even if it never would, because it cant)

Its just kinda crazy that if I remove that floor on the bottom it just shoots up like crazy to 290 centigrade, which is around 550 farenheit.

I'm thinking whenever I want to bake a pizza I can slide in the stone or steel in the oven and remove the floor to preheat it, then when we are all finished I just install the floor again.

But I am not sure how safe that is either... I am so much comfortable outside lighting up charcoal and wood to bake my pizzas there.... gas freaks me out

Offline vtsteve

  • Supporting Member
  • *
  • Posts: 911
  • Location: Vermont, USA
Re: Question about my home oven and its limitations
« Reply #6 on: April 19, 2017, 01:55:55 PM »
Too bad the tech didn't seem to know much.   :(

I suspect that it's not a true temperature you're seeing. When the floor is out, the oven temperature probe is exposed to the IR from the flame... is that how you're measuring the temperature when it "shoots up"? You could try checking it with the floor removed and an oven thermometer on a sheet pan, with another sheet pan on the shelf below to shield the top pan from the direct flame.

The fact that it takes so long to reach low temperature makes me suspect fuel, whether it's the wrong orifice or a blockage in the gas line or valve. It's hard to tell from the video, was the broiler flame bigger/stronger than the oven flame with the floor out?
« Last Edit: April 19, 2017, 02:33:46 PM by vtsteve »
In grams we trust.

Offline Jon in Albany

  • Lifetime Member
  • *
  • Posts: 633
  • Location: Albany, NY
    • Jon In Albany Blog
Re: Question about my home oven and its limitations
« Reply #7 on: April 19, 2017, 04:14:44 PM »
Personally,  I've screwed up launching enough pies to not want the oven floor wide open like that when making pizza. Stuff spills....or at least I spill stuff.

Online kuhne

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 108
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: Question about my home oven and its limitations
« Reply #8 on: April 19, 2017, 06:31:42 PM »
Too bad the tech didn't seem to know much.   :(

I suspect that it's not a true temperature you're seeing. When the floor is out, the oven temperature probe is exposed to the IR from the flame... is that how you're measuring the temperature when it "shoots up"? You could try checking it with the floor removed and an oven thermometer on a sheet pan, with another sheet pan on the shelf below to shield the top pan from the direct flame.

The fact that it takes so long to reach low temperature makes me suspect fuel, whether it's the wrong orifice or a blockage in the gas line or valve. It's hard to tell from the video, was the broiler flame bigger/stronger than the oven flame with the floor out?

I thought that you could be right with this, that maybe the temp I was seeing without the floor was not the real temp. So I did something similar to what you asked. I put my cordierite stone in the top shelf but I didn't put anything under it, my mistake, I guess I should have put something under it to block the flame but it was the top shelf and the flame is a bit far.

I recorded a small video so you could see, i'll post it here, the temps of my stone after about 30 to 40 minutes were pretty high, I reached 575 Fahrenheit on my stone using the IR thermometer. I think it even went a bit higher when I turned on the broiler for a few minutes (this shuts off the bottom burner)

So I don't know what to think, all I know is that I could have baked an awesome pizza on that stone if I wanted to, I think my broiler is old school, obviously gas, so I am not even sure it shuts off with the oven door closed. Still, I've read it's better to make pizzas with the door open?

What do you guys think? Should I just let my wife keep using it as always (she wants this, doesn't want me messing with her area... you know how that is) and whenever I want a good NY style pizza, just remove the bottom, heat my steel/stone and do what I did in my testing right now?

I've been living in this house with that oven for over 7 years and I've never seen it reach those temps, if you told me that oven was capable of heating a thick cordierite stone like the one I am using t 575 Fahrenheit in 40 minutes or less I would have laughed in your face. So I am in a bit of a shock.

Here is the video link. Wow I just realized I went vertical with the video... I never do this, I am sorry, I was taking pictures and completely forgot to turn it.

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/7ogf0k6cfgzsmd9/AABtVk_J_eP9hjBuOFDc65_4a?dl=0

And some pictures as well

« Last Edit: April 19, 2017, 06:34:52 PM by kuhne »

Offline barryvabeach

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 938
Re: Question about my home oven and its limitations
« Reply #9 on: April 19, 2017, 09:16:59 PM »
Kuhne,  thanks for the photos and the video.  When the oven door was open, your flame looked nice and blue  ( blue is what you want ) on both the oven burner and the broiler.  You are supposed to actually check with the oven door closed, and it was hard to tell, but it seemed like in the second video, you did have the door closed and the oven burner flame was blue -  the ignitor stays on and glows orange, but the burner is the only thing we are worried about.   I would feel better if I knew exactly what was causing this strange behavior -  again, it is my guess that there is some air supply problem with the oven floor in place, or it just takes much longer to heat up, but I thought you said it never gets hot. I  looked to find instructions what they want for air access for a wall oven but the one manual for a GE gas wall oven didn't even address that.  https://www.ajmadison.com/ajmadison/itemdocs/JGRP20SENSS_install.pdf

If it were me, when I wanted to make pizza, I would put one rack on the lowest rack, and put a large cookie sheet on it, put my stone on an upper rack and cook with the oven floor out of the unit.  The cookie sheet would function like the oven floor to keep any droppings from hitting the burner.   Since I doubt that anything you drop on the burner would burn any better than gas, I wouldn't be all that worried about a flare up, but I wouldn't want to get drippings on the burner of sauce which could clog the burner. 
They also sell something like this in the states , called an oven liner -  this is for a pack of 10 https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00I3OAGP4/?tag=pmak-20,  again you could use that on a rack on the bottom shelf to keep things from dripping onto the burner, but allow you to use the oven with the floor out.   Then you can put the floor back in when your wife wants to cook.

A D V E R T I S E M E N T


Online kuhne

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 108
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: Question about my home oven and its limitations
« Reply #10 on: April 19, 2017, 09:43:06 PM »
Kuhne,  thanks for the photos and the video.  When the oven door was open, your flame looked nice and blue  ( blue is what you want ) on both the oven burner and the broiler.  You are supposed to actually check with the oven door closed, and it was hard to tell, but it seemed like in the second video, you did have the door closed and the oven burner flame was blue -  the ignitor stays on and glows orange, but the burner is the only thing we are worried about.   I would feel better if I knew exactly what was causing this strange behavior -  again, it is my guess that there is some air supply problem with the oven floor in place, or it just takes much longer to heat up, but I thought you said it never gets hot. I  looked to find instructions what they want for air access for a wall oven but the one manual for a GE gas wall oven didn't even address that.  https://www.ajmadison.com/ajmadison/itemdocs/JGRP20SENSS_install.pdf

If it were me, when I wanted to make pizza, I would put one rack on the lowest rack, and put a large cookie sheet on it, put my stone on an upper rack and cook with the oven floor out of the unit.  The cookie sheet would function like the oven floor to keep any droppings from hitting the burner.   Since I doubt that anything you drop on the burner would burn any better than gas, I wouldn't be all that worried about a flare up, but I wouldn't want to get drippings on the burner of sauce which could clog the burner. 
They also sell something like this in the states , called an oven liner -  this is for a pack of 10 https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00I3OAGP4/?tag=pmak-20,  again you could use that on a rack on the bottom shelf to keep things from dripping onto the burner, but allow you to use the oven with the floor out.   Then you can put the floor back in when your wife wants to cook.

Thanks so much for replying to this thread so quick, your response certainly makes me feel a bit better about the whole thing.

I guess that if I am only trying to pre heat a 1/2 inch pizza steel and it's faster without the floor, I could very well do it directly, even without a sheet in the bottom, right? Since there is no risk of dripping anything, after all I am just pre heating? Then I could put the lower rack in there with the sheet as you suggested, once the steel is preheated and then turn the broiler on and start baking. That way in case I drop some cheese or whatever, it'll land on the sheet? Although it would seem if I drop something it would probably be on the steel itself but it's better to be safe than sorry, right?

I would simply put the floor back instead of the sheet if it were easy but the thing gets too hot and in order to install that floor again I actually need to remove both racks, so it becomes a bit of a pain in the butt. It'd just be easier to remove both racks, then the floor, then install both racks without the floor and put the steel on the top rack with nothing on the bottom rack, let it preheat as much as it can and once I am ready to bake, put a cookie sheet on the bottom rack and turn the broiler on. Once I am done and everything cools down I just install the floor again. Sounds good to you?

Again, thanks for everything!

Offline vtsteve

  • Supporting Member
  • *
  • Posts: 911
  • Location: Vermont, USA
Re: Question about my home oven and its limitations
« Reply #11 on: April 20, 2017, 12:03:10 AM »
I was looking at a GE oven installation manual (at work  :-[) and there was mention of it venting through the front trim - if you can get in there with a mirror (or camera) and see what it looks like from the inside, it might reveal something. You may need to remove the heat shield that's below the burner to get a good view of the trim area.
In grams we trust.

Online kuhne

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 108
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: Question about my home oven and its limitations
« Reply #12 on: April 20, 2017, 12:54:54 AM »
Thanks for looking into my problem while at work, I appreciate it. I will try to do that tomorrow, it'll be interesting. The "tech" guy that came did say that "normally those installations have a vent built on the front under the oven" As you can see in this oven there is no consutriction under the oven allowing for a vent. Instead there is a vent built on the wall to the right of the oven that vents outside, which is better, if it worked. I think that vent may have been built for another oven where venting from the side like that actually worked, then the people who lived in this house about 10 years ago changed the oven to the one we have now and I don't think they thought of the venting problem at all and that really nice vent that goes to the outside is pretty useless. Or maybe it isn't and its just clogged up?

But I think you hit the nail in the head when you are saying it vents from the front, because that is compatible with what the tech said and since the oven seems to be a really tight fit in the space it was installed in, there's no place for air to escape so that probably doesn't allow for high temps? It's still puzzling how just removing the flooring would change things that much, considering that floor panel has two openings on the sides as you can see in the picture.

I also read that a possibility was that the ovens thermostat was on the bottom, under that floor panel, so that panel is actually reflecting heat downwards and heating the thermostat way too much, making it register way higher temps than the oven actually has at the moment and that's why it doesn't heat past 350. The reason why I don't think that makes a lot of sense is because its not just the temp limit discrepancy but also the speed at which things heat up. When the panel is on, it not only reaches a lower limit, it takes forever to get to that limit, crawling slowly to 350. Without the panel, leaving the open flame exposed, it goes way faster. So there is definitely a difference in heat with or without it. I don't buy the thermostat idea, also because it would be poor design and I wouldn't be the only one having this problem.

To me it definitely sounds like a breathing situation.

Offline barryvabeach

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 938
Re: Question about my home oven and its limitations
« Reply #13 on: April 20, 2017, 06:57:50 AM »
Kuhne,  I think your plan would work.  As you point out, it is highly unlikely that you will drop anything anywhere but on the baking steel, when you load the pie and unload it, it is possible that some of the flour from the peel will fall below the stone, and that is where the oven liner would catch it.   

I agree that I thought there would be venting from the front.  Gas ovens need both fresh air intake, and a place to exhaust the byproducts of combustion.   It is likely not getting enough fresh air, or the exhaust is not getting out quick enough.   You are right to reject the thermostat idea.  The thermostat is not under the oven floor,  on your oven it is on the upper left near the light bulb in your photo ,  it looks like a thin metal spike sticking out from the rear.  So that is not the problem.

Online kuhne

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 108
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: Question about my home oven and its limitations
« Reply #14 on: Today at 05:29:59 PM »
Thanks for your information. I haven't been able to get back in there cos the wife has been using it nonstop. I'll check tomorrow if I can see where the air is supposed to come out. Also thanks for the information regarding the thermostat!! One less thing to worry about

A D V E R T I S E M E N T


 

A D V E R T I S E M E N T

wordpress