If your oven door won't close, it's leaking heat. That kind of problem won't only lead to higher utility bills, but will have an adverse effect on your cooking, the appliance itself, and even your safety.
- An improperly closing oven door is a serious safety hazard, especially for children
- Leaking heat will cause uneven baking
- The oven light will remain on at all times and burn out much sooner
- The knobs above the oven door may reach a dangerous temperature because of rising heat
So, what can you do if your oven door won't shut properly? Start by inspecting the four components most likely to be to blame.
1. THE LATCH
The latch is perhaps the most obvious suspect when an oven door won't close. It can become stuck or warped after countless opening and closing motions—or may inadvertently be locked due to an accidental press of the self-clean button. If no food or utensils are in the oven, start a self-clean cycle, then hit Clear/Off after 60 seconds. If that does not unlock the latch, it may need to be replaced.
2. THE HINGE
The hinge, which holds the door onto the frame, is also subject to a lot of wear and tear over time. It may eventually become dirty, rusty, and difficult to move. It may even become loose or move out of alignment over time, preventing the door from fitting into the frame. When that happens, you can either tighten the frame or take the door off the hinges, give it a thorough cleaning, grease the moving parts, and reinstall. If the hinge is badly affected by rust, it may need to be replaced.
3. THE DOOR SPRINGS
Many oven models have door springs to help act as a counterweight when the oven door is opened or closed. To check if the door springs are damaged or misaligned, you may need to slide out the bottom drawer and look underneath the oven. If a spring is worn or broken, you may be able to replace it by simply loosening some bolts, installing a new spring, and tightening everything back up again.
4. THE DOOR GASKET
The oven door gasket, which is made from heat-resistant cloth, helps to form a tight seal between the door and the oven itself. Depending on the model, it may be mounted to the door or the oven. Wherever it's attached, the door gasket can become covered in grease, crumbs, and other debris. Eventually, this buildup may make it difficult to shut the door fully. If cleaning doesn't solve the problem, the gasket may be distorted or cracked—in which case it's time to order and install a replacement part.