Holiday time is just around the corner and many Australians love to open up their homes and throw a party for their friends and neighbours. If you have this in mind, you've got a lot of preparation ahead and will be spending many a long hour in the kitchen as you do so. The last thing that you need at this stage is an appliance that is not playing ball with you. If your oven has an issue, what are some areas you can look at in the short term, to see if you can get things going right now?
In a gas stove, one of the most frequent issues is a burner that simply will not light. You may not need to panic though, because often this is caused by tiny holes that have become clogged by grease, oil or food. If the gas cannot escape from the pipe through these holes, it can't ignite.
Before you reach for the nearest sharp "tool" to try and unclog the mess, don't use anything that could break in the hole and cause an even bigger problem. In other words, don't reach for a toothpick, just because they're sitting on the counter waiting for your guests. Try using a needle instead. Then, once the hole is unclogged, clean the whole area with ordinary soap and water.
One other common problem involves the glow bar igniter. If this isn't working properly, the oven won't heat up to the required temperature. You may be able to see the glow, but realise that there is no heat. In this case, the igniter will need to be replaced (which is a professional job).
In an electric stove, the baking element on the bottom can frequently stop working. Usually, it should be a deep red if it is functioning correctly, but if you can see any dark spots then the whole element will need to be replaced. It's possible to do this yourself if you take certain precautions, but you may like to get professional help here too. If you find that the element is working properly, the thermostat could be the culprit. Unfortunately, this is not a "do-it-yourself" job either.
If you have been able to initiate a quick fix, you will be able to press on with preparations. However, it sounds like you haven't scheduled a service for your oven or other appliances recently and it should be top of your list for tomorrow.