10 Signs Your Oven Is Too Old

There's no doubt about it, ovens are one of the most important appliances in our kitchens. We rely on the handy devices to cook some of our favorite meals, including weeknight staples like casseroles, elegant smorgasbords with prime rib once the holidays roll around, and, of course, homemade bread.

According to American Home Shield (AHS), gas ovens generally last around 15 years, compared to 13 years for an electric range. Mr. Appliance says using your oven less often can keep it working for up to 16 years. AHS suggests that there are a few other things you can do in order to lengthen this life span, such as cleaning it appropriately, ensuring the doors have the correct seals, and using a surge protector. But no matter what, this staple appliance has a shelf life. So if you're wondering how to tell when it has roasted or baked its final meal, keep reading for 10 telltale signs that your oven is too old and needs replacing.

Heat easily escapes

If your oven is releasing heat in all of the wrong areas, such as from the door openings or underneath the lower storage drawer, it's not working correctly. The heat should only escape from the vent; if not, then think about all that wasted money spent on electricity bills.

A difference in meal quality

Pay attention to how well your meal tastes. Per the Food Network, the perfect oven will bake your cakes all the way through and roast your meat until it's crispy, so if you notice your food has taken a turn for the worse, your oven could be on its last legs.

Continual repairs

According to Angi, calling in the experts to fix your oven will set you back anywhere from $100 to $600. If you see this happening again and again, it would be more cost-effective to invest in the stove of your dreams instead.

Awful smells

If your range is omitting putrid smells that are definitely not coming from any dishes you've cooked, and especially if the smells keep getting worse, Prime Appliance Repairs says it's better to think about a replacement than to cook with this issue.

There's rust

If rust has infiltrated the interior of your oven, Wilshire Refrigeration & Appliance Inc. explains that it's important to think about getting a new model since it can hinder the inner workings of the appliance. Rust will also become a major concern if it chips off and seeps into your food.

It's hard to clean

If it becomes difficult to clean your oven or you notice the self-cleaning function isn't getting the job done, it might be time for a new range. The self-cleaning feature should keep pieces of food and excess drips away, so a modern option with properly working parts can help fix this issue.

Temperature fluctuations

Another big sign to look out for is when your oven stops reaching or properly maintaining the right temperature. Perhaps it's not heating fast enough and food isn't cooking all the way through, or your meal ends up way too overdone. Both options will leave you looking for a better alternative.

Exuberant electrical bills

Have your electrical bills gone through the roof? It could very well be because of your oven's issues, says Prime Appliance Repairs. Once you're looking at consistently hefty bills because of your broken range, it's certainly time for a replacement.

It's too noisy

If your once quiet oven begins to make all kinds of racket, like a scratching or buzzing sound, Appliance Express points out that this could be due to dirty gas igniters or a faulty cooling fan. Either way it's time for a replacement.

The door won't close

A stove with a door that isn't closing properly is a sure sign that your food is not getting cooked correctly, and per Reviewed, a broken door is not usually something that can be repaired. The whole unit will need to go.