Due to the danger and complexity of electronic equipment repair, the following technical tip is intended for professional reference only. Please refer to manufacturer’s recommendations as Encompass does not guarantee the accuracy, reliability or safety of this information.
Ovens have a layer of insulation under the surface to maintain heat for efficient cooking and preventing heat from damaging surrounding cabinets and flooring. This insulation can get damaged over time with water seeping in and causing mold or perhaps mice wedging their way in to nest in the warmth. Regardless of the issue, replacing oven insulation can save on energy bills and replacement costs.
To get started on replacing insulation inside a Whirlpool oven, order an insulation layer — part# WPW10208653, available at encompass.com — and follow these steps:
While replacing insulation is simple, it can be tricky to access. The majority of this process involves dismantling the oven to freely access the material on the sides and top of the oven. Use a screwdriver and a wood or plastic block to help make it easier.
1. Unplug oven and move to center of room
During the repair, you will need to access the oven’s internal parts. While you will not be directly manipulating the wiring, leaving the power on will be dangerous. So unplug the oven, or flip the correct circuit breaker if it is wired directly into the house’s power.
Next, pull the whole oven out and into the center of the room. While you dismantle the appliance, you will be removing the side panels. Make sure you have plenty of workspace to set down these panels.
2. Dismantle machine
Remove oven door
Open the door and locate the hinges on either side of the door bottom. Snap open the hinge locks holding the door in place. Then, grab the sides of the door, close it halfway, and slide the door forward so the hinges slip out of the oven. This part is heavy and fragile, so be prepared for the weight. Set it aside on a cushioned surface without putting pressure on the front glass.
Remove rear access panel
At the back of the oven, loosen all 10 screws securing the top rear access panel. Next, pull the panel free and set it aside. This will let you move the control panel up and out of the way once you dismantle the cooktop.
At the front of the oven, locate the two corner screws under the lip of the stove that hold the cooktop in place. Unscrew and set them aside. Then, remove the cooktop: lift the front at a 45-degree angle and then slide the raised back free from
under the control panel. Carefully set this part aside.
Now you can see the panel holding the top elements in place. Unscrew the sides so you can lift this panel up later. Do not fully remove it or disconnect the wiring.
Remove the side panels
The side panels are held in place with screws along the sides of the back panel and more screws under the top control panel. Remove screws at the back of the machine and then move the control panel back out of the way to remove the remainder of the screws. Then, starting on one side, lift up the front corner of the element panel and pull on the back of the side panel so it swings free. It may remain secured to the front of the oven on the mounting tabs, so carefully pull or swing it free. Set the first panel aside and repeat this step on the other side panel.
Access top sheet of insulation under elements
While you don’t want to fully remove the remainder of the top paneling, it is blocking your access to the insulation. Tilt the element panel up and set the front on a wooden block. Then, unscrew the door latch and set it loosely inside the machine.
Remove inner side panels.
A connecting rod runs across the top of the oven under the panel. It is attached to second side panels. Unlatch this rod and set it aside so you can start removing the panels. Each second side panel has two screws holding it in place. Remove the screws and lift the panels free, setting them to the side. Both panels must be removed.
3. Remove old insulation
The insulation should be right under the second side panels you just removed, as well as the tilted top element panel. Carefully start prying the edges of the insulation loose. Excess material will be pushed under the sides of the appliance. While nothing is holding the insulation into place. fibers may be caught against any sharp metal edges. Make sure every edge of the insulation is loose and that the material is hanging loosely from the top of the appliance.
Next, at the top of one of the sides, start gently pulling the material across the top to free it. Stop if you feel any resistance, and try to remove the insulation in a single piece. If you’re removing old insulation because of mice damage, inspect the machine for any loose tufts. Set all of the insulation aside.
4. Install new insulation
Carefully push a short edge of the insulation across the top panel. The edge with perpendicular cuts should be oriented to the rear of the machine. Once the short edge has reached the other side of the top, start pulling that side down until the material is evenly distributed across both side panels.
Tuck excess insulation under the oven body. Make sure both sides have enough excess material so the friction holds the material in place. The insulation should be taut but not tight, and the material should be slid behind the side panel hinges.
5. Reassemble oven
Reverse the dismantling steps by starting with the second set of side panels. Mount them into place and retighten the screws. Slip the connecting rod back across the underside of the top. Latch it to both sides of the appliance. Next, reinstall the door latch with the two screws. Remove the block and carefully lower the top element panel back into place.
Reinstall the two outer side panels. Slip the front edge of each panel into the mounting tabs, then swing them into alignment toward the rear of the machine. As you’re moving the side panels, make sure the top panel is lifted up and out of the way. Once each panel clicks into place, retighten the screws along the edges of the rear panel and under the top control panel. Then, swing the control panel back into position and screw it in place.
Before you reinstall the cooktop, replace all screws you took out along the top panel. Then, slide the back of the cooktop into place under the control panel and lower the front until it’s flat along the top of the oven. Tighten the screws to lock in place.
Put the top rear access panel in position and replace the oven door. Make sure you close the hinge locks and make sure the weight of the door is supported before you let the door go.
Special thanks to Fred’s Appliance Academy for this helpful tips!