Which Electricians Do and Don’t Repair Ovens?

Having just repaired the element in my cooker and feeling far to smug about my rather mediocre achievement, I started to wonder why as an electrician, I’ve never had a phone call from someone asking me to fix their oven. 

This made me decide to do some research, is it just me missing out on this additional source of revenue, do electricians fix ovens?

Old oven in need of repair

I soon discovered that

Electricians very rarely fix appliances such as ovens, fridges or washing machines as this task is better handled by appliance repair engineers. Electricians tend to focus on the wiring within the fabric of the building and avoid fixing appliances for several reasons.

It seems that there is a whole area of tradesmen out there whose sole job is to visit customers homes and repair their electrical appliances. Let’s take a further look into who they are and why electricians don’t do this type of work.

Should You Call An Electrician To Fix Your Oven?

The majority of electricians surveyed said they would not fix the oven of a paying customer as appliance repair falls outside of their area of expertise. There are better and more time efficient options to getting your oven repaired.

The table below shows electricians responses to the question have you ever repaired an oven?

Would you repair an oven?Number of electricians who
Only my own, a family member or friends14
Number of electricians willing to repair an oven

You could try contacting a local electrician to fix your oven but as we shall look at, even if you where able to find one willing to carry out the work this may not be the most efficient route to take towards getting your oven working agin as quickly and as cost effectively as possible.

Who Should You Call To Fix An Oven?

For any household appliance that needs to be repaired, such as an oven, fridge, freezer or washing machine, we should call an appliance repair engineer. If they problem falls outside of their scope of competence then they will be able to offer further advice.

I discovered these are the best people to call when I went to the website trustatrader and searched for oven repair tradesmen in London. The website didn’t provide any contact details for electricians or plumbers but instead suggested these appliance engineer companies.

Trustatrader website suggesting appliance repair engineers to the query electric oven repair
Trustatrader website suggesting appliance repair engineers to the query electric oven repair

We can see from the website link that there are many companies out there willing to fix ovens. These range from self employed sole traders to large companies such as British Gas who take on these types of repair.

What Do You Call Someone Who Fixes Ovens?

A person who fixes ovens, fridges and general household appliances is called a domestic appliance service engineer. The job role is wide ranging as these engineers need many skills including electrical and plumbing experience.

The career is listed on the national careers website and there are many training courses that people can go on in order to train to become an engineer.

Whilst I am unable to find a specific apprenticeship qualifications that appliance repair engineers can undertake, there are apprentice jobs advertised for these type of roles, such as the one linked here.

I was also able to find training courses that are available to give people a basic understanding of how to carry out these repairs, the one featured in the image below is a 10 day course to learn the basics, linked here.

10 day intensive training course to cover appliance repair
10 day intensive training course to cover appliance repair

With a seemingly huge amount of potential work out there, this lead me to question why as electricians we don’t take on this kind of work as we have many of the tools required and a sound understanding of the risk factors involved.

Why Don’t Electricians Fix Ovens?

Me changing my oven element
Me changing my oven element

The main reasons why electricians don’t fix ovens or other appliances is the lack of specialist knowledge and skill set needed. Appliance repair is an area not covered in an electricians training.

Although many electricians are willing to have a go themselves at home (like I mentioned myself at the start getting far too pleased with myself for repairing my own oven), most would not want to attempt a ‘have a go and see what happens’ approach in paying customers homes.

In my experience, the time it took me to locate the screws on the back of my oven, order the correct part and carry out the repair, left me thinking I may have been better served employing an appliance engineer next time.

Experience is very valuable in the world of engineering and there’s no substitute for knowing the intricacies of each model of appliance.

There are also financial reasons why an electrician would not fix an oven. Employed electricians typically earn a higher wage per hour than appliance repair engineers,(source) For a company to employ and send qualified electricians to carry out oven repairs would not be as cost effective as employing appliance repair engineers.

This article here looks at the typical working week for electricians for reference.

An electrician is unlikely to want to reduce their hourly rate of pay in order to fix an appliance. Couple this with the fact they are more than likely going to take longer to complete the task and we can see that hiring an electrician for to fix our oven would be more costly to the customer than hiring an appliance engineer. 

Average Electrician Salary in the UKAverage Appliance Repair Technician
Salary in the Uk
Average electrician wage compared with average appliance repair engineer wage in the UK

I guess some of us may be willing to earn a bit less if it prevented us having to work in the rain!

Do Any Electricians Fix Ovens?

The majority of electricians surveyed said they would attempt to repair their own oven or one belonging to a family member or friend. However, nearly all said they would not attempt to repair a paying customer’s.

It seems that, like myself, many electricians do not feel well suited to the task of carrying out appliance repair. I carried out the repair to my oven with a slow methodical approach and some help from the university of YouTube. I definitely wouldn’t feel comfortable working in a paying customers house whilst watching YouTube videos on my phone to figure out how to repair their oven!

The main problems an electrician would run into when trying to repair an oven, fridge or any other appliance are

  • They would not have the experience dealing with all different types of appliances. 
  • They are very unlikely to carry appliance spares on their van
  • An electrician may not have the multi trade skill set needed (such as plumbing knowledge if repairing a washing machine.)

It’s worth noting from the survey that the electrician who is willing to fix customers ovens is a maintenance electrician. These tend to have a different skill set to installation electricians and have much more experience with fixing all manner of machines (usually in factories) and dealing with PLC repair (program logic control as described here)

Even if an electrician where willing to fix an oven, there’s no suggestion that the customer would be getting a better service as the appliance engineer has more experience with this type of work.

How Much Would An Electrician Charge To Fix An Oven?

If a customer where adamant they wanted an electrician to repair their oven and managed to find one willing to do the work then the cost would likely look as follows

An electrician would charge an average of £40 per hour to fix an oven and would take on average 1-2 hours depending on the repair required. Many electricians will also charge a call out fee at an average of £40

Overall it seems I am not alone in not wanting to get involved in appliance repair. In fact, when asked by my girlfriends mum to have a look at her washing machine I took the cover off, looked at the circuit board inside and decided it would be a much better idea to call the appliance repair specialists.

This article here provides a look at the challenges electricians already face in there daily life

Dave Nicholas

I have worked as a professional electrician for many years and like to use my experience to help others in any little way I can.

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