Bake Element Dims the Lights

At one of todays inspections when I turned on the bake element in the oven the kitchen lights dimmed. This only occurred with the bake element. I used my SureTest and measured ~ a 9 volt rise on one leg and ~ a 9 volt drop on the other leg. There is probably a reasonable explanation for this, but I can’t think of it. I advised my client to have the range and electrical system checked due to what I observed. Anyone have ideas and or the answer?Thanks in advance.

Hi Tab,
did you look in the panel? maybe they are tapped on the same circuit


The interior of the panel looked okay…
I’m thinking it has to have something to do with the bake element or control because it only dims the lights when that is turned on. If it was something that was common to the house, it would do the same thing when the broil element or the air conditioner was turned on.

Voltage drop with an increase on the other leg is a symptom of a loose neutral connection. Voltage will look normal, especially with a digital meter, until the load is imposed on the system.

If thats the case why does it seem to be isolated to the bake element?

It’s just a heavy load. There’s nothing wrong with the stove, that much you can say for sure. This is just a classic loose neutral. The symptom for a loose neutral is one leg getting less voltage and the other leg getting more voltage during heavy load use. If just one leg (or both legs) both went down, that would be more indicitave of a loose hot. With one going up and one going down, that’s a loose neutral.

What is the current draw difference between the bake and broil elements? Seems to me they should be close to the same. That’s the reason confusion set in…

Hi Marc
Can you explain that to me please. I thought that with a 240V stove cicuit the neutral didn’t come into play.

I’m not sure that this stove’s bake element is 240V at this point. Apartment size bake elements are from L1 to N.

The bake element is 240V.

There is a neutral on a 240V electric range because lights, clocks, timers, and so on are 120V.

Depending on the model, the range top elements can also be 120V, and just the bake/broil elements 240V.

Still don’t understand one up and one down due to loose neutral.

In Bake, they both come on, in Broil, just the top element.

So the broil element heats up, but not to cherry red ? I have never seen a red broil element when in the bake mode.