Jump to content


Welcome to the eG Forums!

These forums are a service of the Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, a 501c3 nonprofit organization dedicated to advancement of the culinary arts. Anyone can read the forums, however if you would like to participate in active discussions please join the Society.

Photo

How To Level Electric Stove Coil Burners


  • Please log in to reply
16 replies to this topic

#1 Really Nice!

Really Nice!
  • participating member
  • 1,183 posts
  • Location:Seattle, Washington

Posted 16 September 2004 - 08:53 PM

I recently moved into a condo that has an electric stove. I've been using gas stoves for most of my life except when living in an apartment (and I didn't give a hoot about this problem then).

I have a stove with four burners, none of them are flat and level. They all rise up between 1/4- and 1/2-inch opposite of the connector underneath the stove top. I have restaurant-grade cookware (read: heavy), yet there are many times where they are not heavy enough to weigh down the coil to give me a level cooking surface.

For example, when cooking eggs in my 8-inch skillet, gravity will pull the eggs across the skillet. When searing a steak, the small amount of oil slides across the pan instead staying with the steak.

I've done just about everything I know to try and level them short of using brute force because I don't want to break it.

Anyone ever solve this problem?

Thanks!
Drink!
I refuse to spend my life worrying about what I eat. There is no pleasure worth forgoing just for an extra three years in the geriatric ward. --John Mortimera

#2 EdS

EdS
  • participating member
  • 471 posts
  • Location:SF

Posted 16 September 2004 - 09:11 PM

I had the same problem. I tried monkeying around with the burners and burner pans until I realized that the stove itself has leveling feet. I made some adjustments and the problem is solved.

#3 winesonoma

winesonoma
  • participating member
  • 1,582 posts
  • Location:Sonoma, Ca

Posted 16 September 2004 - 09:13 PM

If leveling the stove doesn't help; Move.
Bruce Frigard
Quality control Taster, Château D'Eau Winery

"Free time is the engine of ingenuity, creativity and innovation"
111,111,111 x 111,111,111 = 12,345,678,987,654,321

#4 fifi

fifi
  • eGullet Society staff emeritus
  • 7,727 posts
  • Location:Houston, TX

Posted 16 September 2004 - 09:31 PM

I am currently in an apartment with the classic electric coil range. The left front small "burner" has this problem by at least a half inch. It takes a heavy Le Creuset to make it level out. Having taken this as a personal challenge and a small, but interesting, engineering challenge, I have endeavored to solve the problem. No luck. Can't figure it. No obvious cause. I even called our truly excellent maintenance guy. He left scratching his head. I have chalked it up to one of those imponderable mysteries of nature.
Linda LaRose aka "fifi"

"Having spent most of my life searching for truth in the excitement of science, I am now in search of the perfectly seared foie gras without any sweet glop." Linda LaRose

#5 EdS

EdS
  • participating member
  • 471 posts
  • Location:SF

Posted 16 September 2004 - 09:49 PM

I am currently in an apartment with the classic electric coil range. The left front small "burner" has this problem by at least a half inch. It takes a heavy Le Creuset to make it level out. Having taken this as a personal challenge and a small, but interesting, engineering challenge, I have endeavored to solve the problem. No luck. Can't figure it. No obvious cause. I even called our truly excellent maintenance guy. He left scratching his head. I have chalked it up to one of those imponderable mysteries of nature.

View Post


You may be able to remove the coil element and adjust it by bending it slightly before reattaching it. In that way, you may be able to make it so the "springiness" no longer causes the coil to change in height dependent on the weight of the piece of cookware. My stove is pretty new and the coils just plug and unplug. I don't know if all electric stoves are that way. I suspect not. Be careful.

#6 birder53

birder53
  • participating member
  • 751 posts
  • Location:Santa Fe, NM

Posted 17 September 2004 - 09:19 AM

I have the same problem with my electric coils. It didn't bother me until I actually wanted to do some serious cooking. I hate electric! :angry: My current plan is to get connected to the gas line the runs past the house and buy me a real stove!! It is next to impossible to use the wok or do a decent saute with electric. The wacky coils and uneven surface drive me crazy. I'll try changing the level of the unit to compensate for the unwieldy coils - but won't that create a problem for my oven??
KathyM

#7 buckwad

buckwad
  • participating member
  • 8 posts
  • Location:Portland, Oregon, USA

Posted 17 September 2004 - 12:19 PM

Another approach you might try (I have gas, so I can't double-check the feasability of this...), would be to get some fairly heavy steel wire and try to fasten the burner to the stove-top frame opposite the power connector. This would make it harder to remove the elements for cleaning, but might be worth a try.

Maybe just buy a ceramic-top range? They seem much more user friendly than the coil type.

Edited by buckwad, 17 September 2004 - 12:21 PM.


#8 Anna N

Anna N
  • eGullet Society staff emeritus
  • 6,461 posts
  • Location:Oakville, Ontario, Canada

Posted 17 September 2004 - 12:25 PM

For years I blamed this on an ancient stove in our apartment. We shimmied it and moved it and thought we had it level but as soon as I poured some oil to coat the bottom of a pan - it was obvious that it was far from level.

Move - to a new house with a brand new stove - same damn problem - nothing seems to fix it. Curse and learn to live with it and swirl pan to distribute oil more evenly prior to searing anything. :angry:
Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

"It either works fine or not, but what the heck. This is bread, not birth control." Susan of Wild Yeast blog
Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog
My 2004 eG Blog

#9 Duvelus

Duvelus
  • participating member
  • 13 posts

Posted 18 September 2004 - 12:43 PM

I too had this problem, so I adjusted the feet. 3 times , and its better but I wasn’t satisfied .

So now I’m trying to figure out what’s wrong . And I find it’s the burner pans that are out

of whack . So I start tweaking the lips of the burner pans up a little here down a little

there. And I ended up getting them all relatively level , at least my eggs don’t take off for the low point now. :smile:

#10 dougery

dougery
  • participating member
  • 370 posts
  • Location:Seattle

Posted 18 September 2004 - 12:56 PM

With a sledgehammer! I hate my coil stove top...
"Live every moment as if your hair were on fire" Zen Proverb

#11 snowangel

snowangel
  • eGullet Society staff emeritus
  • 8,140 posts
  • Location:Twin Cities, MN

Posted 18 September 2004 - 01:38 PM

Either use paperclips or wire trimmings to fill in here and there, or do what I did. Buy a gas stove. Buy some pipe and the other stuff you need and install it (I'm DYI on everything except childbirth and dental).
Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"

#12 WolfChef

WolfChef
  • participating member
  • 258 posts
  • Location:Excelsior

Posted 18 September 2004 - 02:21 PM

How about folded up tinfoil under the low side of the burner?
A island in a lake, on a island in a lake, is where my house would be if I won the lottery.

#13 BeJam

BeJam
  • participating member
  • 167 posts
  • Location:Mountain Top, PA

Posted 19 September 2004 - 11:21 AM

Have you thought about heavy cast iron heat diffuser? That may add the heft you need to weigh down the burner. You may have to preheat it though to ensure enough heat gets to your pan.
Bode

#14 fiftydollars

fiftydollars
  • participating member
  • 892 posts

Posted 19 September 2004 - 11:59 AM

I agree with esvoboda that bending is the best way to fix this if the heating elements are removable. I previously did this successfully on a stove with removable elemets, but my current stove's elements are fixed and I can't get in there to bend them as easily.

I think this is a total pain in the ass that the manufacturers should take care of... I don't see why they wouldn't level the effin burners before selling the stoves.

#15 WHT

WHT
  • participating member
  • 983 posts
  • Location:Chicago

Posted 19 September 2004 - 04:16 PM

Have you thought about heavy cast iron heat diffuser?  That may add the heft you need to weigh down the burner.  You may have to preheat it though to ensure enough heat gets to your pan.

View Post



Why not replace the elements?
Living hard will take its toll...

#16 winesonoma

winesonoma
  • participating member
  • 1,582 posts
  • Location:Sonoma, Ca

Posted 19 September 2004 - 04:58 PM

Buy one of these and be done with it.http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/templates/pod/horizontal-pod.jhtml?id=0006318&navAction=push&navCount=1&indexId=cat20110&parentId=cat20110&parentType=index&rid=&_DARGS=%2Fcabelas%2Fen%2Fcommon%2Fcatalog%2Fpod-link.jhtml_A&_DAV=MainCatcat20075
Bruce Frigard
Quality control Taster, Château D'Eau Winery

"Free time is the engine of ingenuity, creativity and innovation"
111,111,111 x 111,111,111 = 12,345,678,987,654,321

#17 winesonoma

winesonoma
  • participating member
  • 1,582 posts
  • Location:Sonoma, Ca

Posted 19 September 2004 - 05:02 PM

let's try this. Buy one of these.http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/templates/pod/horizontal-pod.jhtml?id=0006318&navAction=push&navCount=1&indexId=cat20110&parentId=cat20110&parentType=index&rid=&_DARGS=%2Fcabelas%2Fen%2Fcommon%2Fcatalog%2Fpod-link.jhtml_A&_DAV=MainCatcat20075
Bruce Frigard
Quality control Taster, Château D'Eau Winery

"Free time is the engine of ingenuity, creativity and innovation"
111,111,111 x 111,111,111 = 12,345,678,987,654,321