We found replacing our ceramic stove top was cheaper than replacing our entire stove. Finding a replacement for our ceramic stove top was not an easy process.
Here is the how and why we needed to replace the stove top in the first place.
Early yesterday morning my husband fixed himself some toaster waffles for breakfast.
He wanted hot syrup with his waffles, so he heated up some syrup in a small glass jar in the microwave. When the syrup was hot, he removed the jar, holding it by its plastic lid/handle. Unfortunately, the plastic had expanded in the microwave so the lid separated from the glass jar when he removed it from the microwave, which resulted in:
- the glass jar of syrup dropping violently onto our ceramic smooth top stove,
- boiling-hot syrup splashing all over my husband's face,
- hundreds of drops of syrup splattering across the kitchen cabinets, flooring, appliances, etc., and
- a large, sticky pool of syrup settling on the red kitchen carpet.
Cleaning up the syrup wasn't very difficult (thanks to our Rainbow vacuum), but repairing the damage to the stove was another matter.
Although the glass jar remained completely intact after the fall, the ceramic top of our stove had developed a lovely star-shaped crack as a result of the sudden collision, and the cracks had spread across three of the burners of the stove.
Not a good thing at all.
It was painfully obvious that we needed to replace the cooktop, so I walked over to the computer and tried to look up prices for a replacement cooktop.
I realized almost immediately that I needed the model number of the range in order to look up the correct replacement part, so I went back to the range, searched around for a while, and finally located the model number/serial number sticker—and discovered that half the sticker was missing!
And not just any half—the FIRST half—the part of the sticker that has the most important part of the model number.
How do I know the first part is the most important part?
GE told me so.
When I called GE for help in locating the model number, they said they couldn't look up model numbers without the first three numbers. Not the last three. The first three. Needless to say, they couldn't help me at all. ARRGH!!
And so I proceeded to spend the next several hours trying to discover what model of range we own. Unfortunately, although I distinctly remember reading the user's manual to the range sometime within the last year (I never can remember how to do the self-clean feature), I had no idea where the little booklet happened to be at that time. So that wouldn't help me at all; I had to discover the model number some other way.
So I scoured the internet, armed with the last six numbers of the model that were still readable on the sticker. I even searched through 140 pages of GE model numbers!
But, alas, I found nothing.
I then took a walk down our street, knocked on about half a dozen doors, and asked the neighbors (whose houses were built the same time ours was) if they happened to have the same model of range that we have.
But none did.
However, during my little excursion, I was lucky enough to find a similar range model to the one we own; so I figured it might be safe to assume that both range models at least STARTED with same letters—"JBP."
Armed with the knowledge that my range's model number probably began with JBP and definitely ended with WFWW, I returned to the internet and pulled up GE's website again.
I then started to search for online user's manuals by typing in random two-digit numbers in between the numbers of the model I was sure about. And believe it or not, after only bout 15 minutes, I pulled up the user's manual that had a drawing of our range! I'd finally found it!
But that elation didn't last long. Now that I had the correct model number, I was able to look up the replacement part—only to discover that it was $309! Ouch! I could by a brand new range for $398!
Thankfully, another homeschooling family recommended that we check Repair Clinic for the part, which we did, and we found the part through them for only $229. Much, much better!
So we ordered the part tonight. We're hoping that we'll be able to replace it ourselves—from the look of it, it should be simple to do— but only time will tell if we'll be successful since we don't always have the best of luck repairing things on our own. The replacement ceramic cooktop should arrive Thursday, and we plan to install it as soon as it comes in.
Until then, we'll be microwaving.
[UPDATE: See how we replaced the cracked ceramic cooktop.]