Kenmore Gas Range Control: Solder Joint Failure

The entire control panel of our longsuffering Kenmore gas range became increasingly erratic, eventually reaching the condition where touching the upper right corner would blank the display, touching the lower right corner would restore it, and gently touching the temperature knob might elicit an F2 or F4 error code on the display. Given the symptoms, the old adage “It’s always the connectors” sprang unbidden to mind; I was pretty sure the oven temperature sensor had nothing to do with it.

Pulling the thing apart reveals the PCB across the back of the control panel:

Kenmore oven control - PCB overview
Kenmore oven control – PCB overview

Note that all of the external connections arrive on the white power supply PCB attached over the main PCB.

A closer look shows one of the two groups of wire interconnects between the two boards:

Kenmore gas range - rear PCB
Kenmore gas range – rear PCB

There’s a similar group hidden behind the hulking transformer.

Removing the two obvious screws and easing the PCB out of the red plastic latches made the problem instantly obvious:

Kenmore gas range - failed solder joint
Kenmore gas range – failed solder joint

Yeah, that broken solder joint would definitely be touch-sensitive!

The solder joints in the other group also show signs of fatigue:

Kenmore gas range - broken solder joints
Kenmore gas range – broken solder joints

It’s of interest only the upper joints on the power supply PCB have fractured. Perhaps those ends of the wires were hand-soldered separately from the other ends in the main PCB?

Resoldering both ends of all the wires restored perfect operation:

Kenmore gas range - resoldered joints
Kenmore gas range – resoldered joints

For the record, the Kapton tape I laid over the entire control panel 2-½ years ago continues to protect the slightly cracked membrane over the pushbutton switches:

Kenmore oven control - Kapton tape cover
Kenmore oven control – Kapton tape cover

Gotta love yet another zero-dollar appliance repair …

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