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It's not surprising that smoke is one of the most common symptoms of oven trouble. After all, these reliable appliances heat a wide variety of foods on a daily basis, reaching high temperatures and ending up coated in grease, oil, and food debris. Fortunately, the fix may be easier than you think. Let's get started.


Although smoking ovens are fairly common, it's not actually normal for ovens to emit smoke during regular operation—and it's not the kind of problem you should ignore. In fact, a smoking oven won't only ruin the taste of your food: it may also discolor your decor, irritate anybody with a respiratory condition, and even signal an impending fire.


Oven troubleshooting often reveals the need for replacement parts or a professional repair. Fortunately, there's a good chance your smoking oven requires a solution you can handle yourself.

  • Clean it: Spills and residue from previous cooking are the most likely cause of oven smoke. Grease, oil, food debris—it will all combust and start to smoke once your oven heats up again. Unfortunately, these fragments could be anywhere within the oven itself, including on the shelves, trays, and inserts, so you'll have to give them a thorough cleaning using proper appliance cleaners.

  • Wipe off the cleaner: It may seem counterintuitive, but a recently cleaned oven may still produce unwanted smoke and odors. Why? Because there may still be residue from the cleaning chemicals you used. A thorough wipe down with a damp cloth should be enough. Also think about switching to a natural cleaning method (such as baking soda, vinegar, and water) rather than using a chemical cleaner.

  • Run your new oven for a while: If you're using your oven for the first time, it may produce smoke due to the factory coatings applied during the manufacturing process. Consult your appliance's manual for any "burn in" recommendations (usually 400-600 degrees Fahrenheit for about 45 minutes) to eliminate these coatings.

  • Replace the element: If you notice that either of your heating elements (bake or broiler) fail to turn red-hot but produce smoke anyway, it may have burned out and will need to be replaced. Cut the power to the oven then unplug it. To remove the element, take out the screws that connect it to the oven interior. After that, install the new element from our parts catalog. Alternatively, simply call in one of our local technicians to quickly take care of everything for you!

  • Change your cooking technique: If your oven smokes while food is inside, the food itself could be the cause. High-fat foods, for example, will smoke and even combust if they're cooked too fast or too hot. If could also be that grease is dripping or spraying onto one of the elements. Place a drip pan underneath anything you're roasting, and make sure to leave at least three inches between the broiling element and anything on the top rack.


A smoking oven could have a variety of causes, and the solution could be anything from a thorough cleaning to a new heating element. However you choose to proceed, our factory-trained technicians are at your service. Book an appointment with one of our local specialists and we'll likely get the job done in just one visit.*

*GE Appliances technicians carry an extensive parts inventory on their service trucks. In the event a part is not available on the service truck, a follow-up service call may be required.
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