The galley can become a source of great pleasure on a boat. It can also become a place of great frustration. Generally, I’m very happy in my galley, however this year frustration began to set in when I started burning food in our Seaward oven.
At first I thought I needed to adjust the temperature setting and brought my oven thermometer to check the temps. I set the dial to 350 degrees and was quite alarmed when the thermometer rose to 425 degrees and continued going up. There was just no amount of fiddling with the dial that would bring the oven temp to the heat I wanted.
I sat there scratching my head.
Our next trip out, I lit the pilot light and turned the dial to heat the oven so I could start dinner. My plan was to monitor the food carefully and manually adjust the oven as needed. After prepping the meat I opened the oven door to pop it inside only to find a cold oven. I frowned, the pilot light was still burning but the element never engaged. My hubby and I both tried to fire up the oven but nothing would work except the pilot light. I ended up cooking the meal on the stovetop.
When we returned from our cruise on the Columbia River we contacted the manufacturer for their input. The Seaward representative was extremely helpful. Our Seaward 3 burner stove/oven is presumed to be original to the boat, making it over twenty years old. The lady on the phone told us that generally they expect the parts to last about twenty years and gave us her best guess on what the problem was.
She then explained that we could buy the suspected part and have it delivered but pointed out that it was quite possible the remaining ‘guts’ could be at fault or go soon too. She gave us the option of just buying the one part or the entire control set up. I’m happy to say that at no point was there any ‘sales pressure’ she was very helpful and low key. We opted for the entire set up and it arrived within a few days.
My hubby isn’t very good at fine manual dexterity work, thus the job fell to me. I was a bit intimidated to change out the ‘guts’ and really worried about getting the old wires up through and the new wires back down the holes with all that insulation. Turns out it was way easier than I thought!
I shut off the CNG tank, grabbed our ever-present toolbox, flashlight and my small mirror with stand. Humm…small mirror with stand? Yep, haven’t you ever needed to see behind something? Nothing works better, you can even shine the light on the mirror and it’ll bounce back onto the back of whatever object you’re looking at. A small mirror with a stand to brace it into position is an extremely valuable tool.
So, I took off the knob, removed the nuts, pulled out the thermostat, unscrewed the glow plug (not sure that what it’s called, it’s behind the pilot light) and pulled everything out.
The directions that came with our order were pretty easy to follow; the most difficult part for me was getting the threaded fitting and the nuts back in place tightly. So take your time it’s not something you can just muscle into place, it takes lots of turns and well I guess some muscle. Once everything was assembled, I covered the connections with soapy water and turned on the CNG to check for leaks and found none.
Ah, the moment of truth! I lit the pilot light, yep it lit up…whew…one hurtle cleared! I set the temp for 350 degrees and waited. It takes a minute for everything to work but the element fired right up and the oven is back in service! We celebrated that night with chili rellenos and margaritas for our dinner.
The Seaward representative impressed me as she followed up with us a couple of weeks after our order. Just to be sure the oven was working properly….now that’s service! The parts cost us about $160 US not including shipping.
I figure that’s a much better dollar amount than having to bring in a new stove which would cost quite a bit more. Of course, “Whisper” is an older sailboat so I don’t really mind if we have older…classic…stuff aboard. So happily my galley’s back in order and we’re gearing up for the Pirate Cruise! If you’ve found this helpful then please follow this link for future reference. Be sure to wave if you see us and if you’ve had to work on your stove/oven please feel free to leave a comment.
7 Comments posted on "How to Repair a Seaward Oven"
Russ on February 6th, 2009 at 5:51 pm #
Can’t thank you enough for your very well-written article on the Seaward repair. My 24 year old seaward is exhibiting the exact problem you described (and fixed); sooo… I’ll be phoning Seaward and following your example!
Debbie on February 6th, 2009 at 10:18 pm #
Thank you for your kind words. I’m tickled to be able to help! As I said, the Seward representative was extremely helpful and followed up with us by phone.
The oven continues to work great and the Galley Goddess has turned out some pretty good meals as judged by the groveling for more and the empty plates….
Good luck with your repair.
brian on February 1st, 2016 at 5:05 am #
I have a seaward stove but can’t find a parts supplier. I doubt it is the original stove on the boat as she is 50 years old. Could you send me the contact details for your supplier.
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