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pahodges 01-14-2013 01:14 PM

Whirlpool Oven - Gray, plastic-smelling smoke
A few weeks ago, we started noticing a buring plastic smell coming from our oven. I inspected, not coming from the oven chamber. Taking of the lower rear cover and heat shield, I could see (and smell!) gray smoke rising out of the space between the left side retaining panel and the oven chamber (i.e. -- where the oven wrap insulation is located). I will repeat to be clear: the smoke is not coming from inside the oven cooking chamber, it is coming from the space between the chamber and the chassis/body of the oven.

I have no idea why there would be something smoking there, or how on earth it would have gotten there. My only theory is that an uninvited houseguest (aka "mouse") got in there and was building a nest in the insulation, or knocked something in there.

My problem is, I am not sure how to proceed with disassembly. I could probably inspect and correct the problem if I could get the stovetop off, but am unsure how to disconnect the gas lines leading to the burners. Alternatively, I could remove the side panel, but am not sure if I can do that without either major dissambly or having to take the stovetop off. Any advice, recommendations, drawings? Anyone?

I suppose I should also mention that everything is functioning fine about the oven. It just starts emitting the horrible burning plastic/rubber smell after the oven has been on for 15-25 minutes.

Gene 01-15-2013 02:09 PM

4 Attachment(s)

Pull the range out of wall. Unplug the power cord, turn off the gas to the range and disconnect the gas line from the range. Now you can remove a side panel. The instructions are attached to the post.

Here are the breakdown diagrams and Parts for Whirlpool SF362LXSS0 Range -


pahodges 01-15-2013 07:18 PM

Thanks Gene! I will give it a try tomorrow, this is exactly what I needed.

Gene 01-15-2013 07:40 PM

You are welcome. Keep us posted.


pahodges 01-16-2013 04:40 PM


Worked like a charm. Got the side panel off, found evidence of the mice (droppings, wood shavings, etc). They had dragged a rubbery plastic coin, about the size of a silver dollar, from one of my son's board games in there and chewed it all up. Cleaned all that up, reassembled the oven, and ran it for about 45 minutes at 425. Still some faint traces of the odor, but nothing like before.

Incidentally, for anyone else who needs to take the side panel off: it is not strictly necessary to remove the oven door to get the panel off. If you prop the door open slightly, you can easily get the side panel off of the front tabs (and, critically, back on).

Thanks again! Glad we didn't have to call the service guy, and glad that the oven was not actually broken!

Gene 01-16-2013 04:44 PM

You are welcome. I'm glad you were able to fix it. Good job!


Dbacon75 04-29-2018 10:13 PM

Same smoke with burning plastic smell
I’ve had the same issue with a burning plastic smell when I’m use the oven, which is accompanied by smoke if the heat is over about 300. It was less the second time I used the oven, so, looking at other threads on other sites, I thought it would go away. The other threads said it was due to the burn off of s chemical in the insulation used in manufacturing, and would go away after the oven was used a couple hours of times.

It hasn’t gone away.

I can use the steam clean mode with no odors at all, but temperatures over 350 invoke the odor, and trying to use the self clean mode just now required me to open all the windows in the house so we wouldn’t get sick from the fumes. I shut the self clean off after 20 minutes, it was so bad.

Please advise on what I should do!

Gene 05-01-2018 10:31 PM

What is the model number and age of the unit?

Does it smell in any mode or just self-clean?

Dbacon75 05-01-2018 11:34 PM

Thanks for the quick reply!

Using the oven smells in all modes, worse as the temperature is increased. There is no smell when using the cooktop.

Whirlpool - 4.8 Cu. Ft. Freestanding Electric Range - White

Model: WFE320M0EW

Gene 05-03-2018 12:40 AM

Make sure the oven vent (under the control panel) is clean and not blocked.
Remove the power from the range and pull it out of the wall. Remove the rear panel and carefully check the oven vent tube.

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