/ Home & Energy

Your cooker complaints – give your oven a scolding

Pie in oven

Which cooker niggles get you all hot and bothered? Here’s your chance to take the oven gloves off and share your cooker complaints with the Which? Convo community.

If you’re like me, you’ll use your cooker or oven everyday. Because of this, if there’s something annoying about the cooker you cook on, it’s going to get you boiling over with rage pretty quickly.

I love my oven even if it is a bit temperamental, and I’m loathe to spend money on a new one if I don’t have to. It’s about ten years old but it heats up quickly, it’s easy to use and I love the fact that it’s multi-function. In fact, I’ve got more cooking options available than I know what to do with.

But the grill isn’t great. It doesn’t seem powerful enough for the heat to spread all the way across the grill pan. I’ve learned to live with this by moving my food around to make sure it’s all cooked, making sure that the full-grill option is selected and, if necessary, using a higher shelf in the grill. I really don’t want to shell out £500 for a new oven until I absolutely have to.

Boiling over with cooker and oven problems

But some niggles might be a bit harder to live with than my iffy grill. If the markings around the temperature dials have worn off, you’ll be setting the oven from memory, and this is going to be hit and miss at best.

If it’s hard to slide the oven shelves in due to the way the door is designed, this is going to be a pain every time you cook. And if your oven doesn’t heat-up properly or overheats, cooking instructions and recipes won’t be worth the paper they’re written on.

If you have a problem with getting an accurate temperature, oven thermometers are available for about a fiver online and will help you live with temperature problems. They stand, or hang, inside the oven and will tell you how hot your oven is. You’ll never know exactly how accurate the thermometers are, but they will give you an indication about how hot or cold your oven is and you’ll be able to adjust your settings.

What’s less than perfect on your cooker and how have you learned to live with it? And tell us about the practical steps you’ve taken to keep your cooker cooking for longer.


I have a Bush cooker with a double oven. When I try to cook larger tiems, such as cakes, in the fan oven I find the items are overcooked round the edges but undercooked in the centre, even if I use the lower temperatures suggested for fanb ovens. I thought the idea of a fan oven was that the hot air circulated around the oven to produce even cooking and I found this in previous fan ovens that I have used. The cooker is now just a few weeks out of guarentee. I have also found that the instructions for operating the grill in the top oven are incorrect. I wish I had bought a cooker from a shop where I could touch the goods and ask advice.

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I purchased a Belling range cooker and the facia and knobs get so hot that I cannot touch them without using an oven glove but HSE and BSI have set the maximum heat allowed for the Knobs as 60 degrees above ambient room temperature and Belling then state this cooker is suitable to be used by anyone over the age of 8 years. IT seem that countless people have complained for years about the same problem but because of HSE and BSI ruling it is perfectly OK and we can do nothing about it . HOw bad a burn will someone have to sustain before someone does something about this?

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As far as I can recall, the limiting temperatures for components that will be touched for adjustment (but not held for more than a brief period) – such as knobs – are 60 deg C for metal and 75 deg C for plastic.

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duncan, these touch-temperature figures have been arrived at internationally and are soundly based. They are not figures designed for permanent contact. I’ll trawl through the BS EN standards when I have more time. The difference between the two figures is because metal conducts heat quickly, and plastic does not.

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Looking at images of Belling range cookers, they might have the same problem as Rangemaster.

Rangemaster supply a guard to insert between the top oven/grill and the knobs to stop them melting.

Coffee is drunk at 175 deg F Duncan.

I have not done a literature search but this abstract from a journal article suggests that HSE and BSI might not be right: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18226454

I didn’t spot any recommendations about the temperature of hot beverages from either BSI or HSE. The touch temperatures have been long established internationally and are given in the ISO (International Standards Organisation) document in the following comment.

Do the standards agree with common sense? I don’t think so, otherwise Linsay and others would not be concerned.

If you Google “bsi and oven temperatures” the first result will give you the correct recommendations as per BSI.

On a personal level I’m not entirely in agreement with those as, in my own opinion, they are not tight enough but they are the set standards and so far as I am aware in line with or exceeding EU guidelines.

People that are sensitive to heat or have sensitive skin types can feel this to be far too warm, it shouldn’t burn however as the argument goes that it’s not hot enough to do so instantly therefore, you’d sense it warm and take your hand away negating the risk of a burn. Which I kinda get and cookers will get warm regardless of flavour but it can be controlled by design to a large degree.

I always urge people when buying a cooker or built in oven to either look for one that is of a very good design to manage heat which means seeking professional advice on what to buy and having a pretty good budget to spend. Or, you need to look for one that has a cooling fan fitted to cool the fascia and door. Either of those options will not be budget machines but, if you want the facia and door to be cool when in use they are the only options available to look at.

Anything else will all too often prove to be skirting the limits allowed by the agreed standards as I think you will find is the case here as it sounds like, depending on the materials, that is indeed conforming to standard.

Put it this way, from hundreds of appliances I’ve seen over the years I’ve yet to come across one that didn’t conform to the BSI standards when tested.

Whether I personally agree with it or not isn’t really relevant in that.


I agree that it is worth seeking professional advices, but surely that should not be necessary. I don’t remember the controls on a traditional electric cooker becoming hot.

Diabetics can suffer from peripheral neuropathy, making them unable to feel pain. Generally the feet are the problem and the lack of feeling can result in tissue death. Standards should be there to serve our needs.

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The document dealing with hot touchable surfaces is ISO 13732-1 “Ergonomics of the thermal environment – methods for assessing of human responses to contact with surfaces part 1 Hot surfaces”.
Briefly this document looks at the relation between the time of contact, the type of material, surface texture and skin sensitivity, and the temperatures for “no burn”, “burn threshold” and “burn”. It considers children, adults and the elderly. It allows assessments to be made of the maximum recommended temperatures for different types of touchable components.

For example for a contact time of 4 to 10 secs (for example turning a control knob) the limiting (no burn) temperature for coated metal is 60 to 55 C, and for plastic 75 to 70 C

I have a bush double oven and the knob I turn to put the fan on isn’t connecting properly Thankyou

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Hi All
I have a Leisure range 90cm electric cooker and both ovens are not working, the fan oven in one of them is working with light coming on too but no heat, could this be the element gone in both ovens ??

Hi Antionette,
Is the clock working and set?

When the clock stopped working on my cooker, neither of the ovens would work. The digital time just flashed and I couldn’t do anything with it.

I never use the clock on it since I got it

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Is the fuse easy to fix ??

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If the timer is computer controlled it might be worth turning off the power for a few minutes or even overnight to reset it. Most of us are familiar with restarting computers but turning off the power can sort out all sorts of problems. Many years ago, my car stereo worked fine but none of the CDs would eject. Disconnecting the power was the solution and I never had the same problem again. Apart from needing to reset the clock, there is nothing to lose by trying.


We purchased a Leisure Cookmaster CK100F232 in November 2014.

We were very disappointed from the start with the fan oven as it burnt food at the rear of the oven, but left food undercooked at the front.

In May 2015, one of the knobs broke, we decided to contact the supplier and also inform them of the problem with the fan oven as it seemed to get worse. Beko sent out an engineer, who said that the fan oven was fine, just to make sure we preheated the oven for at least 20 mins before cooking and to regularly turn the food.

In November 2015, our house fuses blew – it turned out that the problem was the cooker – the fan oven lights still came on and the fan worked – but there was no heat. Again we called Beko and they replaced the heating element? Again I voiced my concerns over the quality of the cooking in the fan oven as it was still burning/cremating food at the rear but leaving food undercooked at the front, but again told it was fine and basically given the same advise. If we wanted to bake cakes/yorkshire puddings etc we couldn’t use the fan oven and had to rely on the convectional oven – this seemed a satisfactory solution to the engineer – just use the convectional oven!

2 night ago – the fuses in the house blew …. about 5/10 mins of turning the fan oven on. No surprise maybe, but there is no heat in the oven AGAIN, althought the light and fan work.

I have contacted both the supplier and manufacturer – but as it is now 12 months outside the manufacturers warranty they don’t want to know.

Incidently on the last engineers visit I also complained as there is a ‘splashback’ attached to the back of the cooker – above the convectional oven all of the paint has come off and it looks awful, it started coming off after a couple of weeks of using the cooker – the response from the engineer was it’s better it’s doing that to the splashback – imagine if it was your tiles??

So dissapointed with the quality of service I have received from both the supplier and the manufacturer – I paid £900 for this cooker and thought it would last for more than 2 years – it seems either there is a fault with the fan oven with the cooker – or the heating elements – surely they should last for more than 12 months??

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I have no knowledge of the technicalities of your oven but I was surprised to read that the engineer said you should turn the food round regularly. The whole point of a fan oven is that the fan circulates the heat evenly all around the interior of the oven avoiding the need to keep opening the door and turning the food round. Ovens are also designed with timers so that you can put something in and let it cook without constant attention. I certainly think you should follow Duncan’s advice.

You purchased the oven in November 2014 so your contract is covered by the Sale of Goods Act 1979 [and not the Consumer Rights Act 2015] and any claim is against the retailer but I note that you have been dealing with the manufacturer under their warranty.

If a fault is apparent within the first six months it is assumed that the problem existed at the date of delivery and you have rights to repair or replacement; to deny you that right within that period it is up to the retailer to prove that the goods were of satisfactory quality, fit for purpose, or as described when it sold them. However, since you did not report the problem with the fan until May 2015, which was over six months after purchase [check the actual dates – it could fall within the six months rule], the burden of proof now falls on you but you could still have a good claim. You have six years to take a claim to court for faulty goods in England, Wales and Northern Ireland; in Scotland you have five years.

After six months from when you received the goods, it’s up to you to prove that the problem was there when you received the goods even if it has taken until now to come to light. You may need to prove that the fault was not down to ordinary wear and tear or damage you caused, and that the product (or a component) should have lasted longer than it did. To do this you may need an expert’s report, for example, from an engineer or a mechanic.

What I have said above is based on Which? guidance on the Sale of Goods Act – http://www.which.co.uk/consumer-rights/regulation/sale-of-goods-act

If you need help to pursue a claim I would suggest that you contact Citizens Advice or a local community legal service.

One further suggestion. If the retailer proves unhelpful and you paid by credit card, there is the option of making a claim against the credit card company: http://www.which.co.uk/consumer-rights/regulation/section-75-of-the-consumer-credit-act

An important provision in the Sale of Goods Act is under its “Quality” requirement, and this is “Durability”. Irrespective of whether you can prove a pre-existing fault, it is clear after your repairs that this cooker is not durable.
The Guide to SoGA says to the retailer:
Your contract with the customer
Under the Sale of Goods Act, when you sell something to a customer you have an agreement or contract with them. A customer has legal rights if the goods they purchased do not conform to contract (are faulty). The Act says that to conform to contract goods should
• match their description
by law everything that is said about the product must not be misleading – whether this is said by a sales assistant, or written on the packaging, in-store, on advertising materials or in a catalogue
• be of satisfactory quality
quality of goods includes
– appearance and finish
– freedom from minor defects (such as marks or holes)
– safe to use
– in good working order

durability – the durability requirement is that the item should work or last for a reasonable time but it does not have to remain of satisfactory quality. For example, a pair of wellington boots should stay waterproof but does not have to keep its brand new appearance.

Claiming under SoGA is against your supplier, the retailer.

Hello, Thank you for your response Duncan Lucas. I have contacted the supplier Co-operative Electrical again this evening – I need to get an engineers report before they will even consider assisting. I have checked the fan … I am not an engineer and I don’t know really what I am listening for – but I can’t hear any scraping. It is above the convectional oven that the paint is peeling away – not the fan oven. It was also one of the knobs for the hob control that just snapped.

I think my only option is now to try and find an engineer and get a report.

Thank your for your response John Ward – the cooker was purchased on 17th November, I think it was delivered 18th November and installed a week or so after that as we had to wait. We notified them of the problem with the fan oven on 20th May – so just outside the 6 months from date of purchase. I have mentioned to the supplier that we started reporting problems with the oven just outside the 6 months – but they don’t want to know. I need to get an engineers report.

Hi Malcom r, Thank you for your reply. I have tried going down this route too – but apparently I still need an engineers report. It is just so frustrating, I just can’t believe that we made the supplier of the problem with the oven initially 6 months and 3 days after the date of purchase – continued to have problems and had another call out just over a year from purchasing it – and are now in a situation where the fan oven is broken AGAIN. I will have to find an engineer an try to take this further.

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If you have had 2 failed elements then I do not see an engineers report as necessary to look at the durability aspect – their failure will be on record. If you are pursuing the fan oven issue as not fit for purpose – not cooking evenly – then you probably will need an independent report. You may need to point out you will take this to a small claims court to resolve, given the cost of the cooker. Bear in mind an award, if given, may be based on the amount of use you have had from the cooker.

Seems to me that Which? ‘s role in life would be to intercede in these matters. For members you might well think we could supply enough work for at least a couple of engineers to write these reports.

Come on Which? easily affordable and a practical use of subscribers money.

Hi. I have a BEKO BDV555AX cooker and I need to replace the fan element in theain oven. I have removed the four screws from the cover panel on the inside – as shown by every single video tutorial I have watched on the subject … But where I would expect to see the screw heads to remove the heating element itself, there are just two little stumps of metal – please tell me I don’t have to take the whole back off the cooker just to change the heating element?!

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Thank you very much for your help

Stephen says:
8 December 2016

Unfortunately the back has to come off. The wire going to the elements is all incorporated in the rear of the cooker

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Lynn Newman says:
7 December 2016

I have a leisure master range which I’ve had for three weeks and the paint is peeling off of the handle of the conventional oven! Has anyone else experienced this? I would expect a £900 cooker to last longer than this.

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The Leisure GR6GV MkII bottom oven has never worked except occasionally when purchased IF the top oven was not on. After a short while the bottom oven would not light at all and still does not. The grill will not stay on either unless I keep the button pressed in all the time – even a few minutes after keeping the grill button pressed in, when I release it the grill goes out immediately.

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I have a 2011 50cm Belling 317 W H cooker with the grill cavity doubling as a top oven. I am getting uneven cooking on both ovens but the worst by far is the main oven where the situation has deteriorated over the last 6 months.
The thermostats are working, so are the heating elements and the fan. Both oven door seals are in good condition and engaging with the doors.
Part of the Christmas dinner was ruined with some items burnt while others were just cooked. Normally the top oven has been used for roast potatoes and oven chips and again the heat distribution is poor with burn and underdone chips/potatoes. Again this situation is a deteriorating one.
I got an engineer out to look at it and he confirmed that the over parts are in good condition and did not need replacement. He further said that he had encountered a number of similar problems with Belling Ovens and said that no one so far had come up with an answer.
I cannot afford approx £400 to buy another cooker that is not a Belling. All I want is a working cooker.

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Thank you. You have confirmed my own belief. I have no knowledge of electrical cookers and their ovens but I have a good working knowledge of heat treatment ovens and to my mind uneven heat within the main oven was down to poor air circulation. I now have a decision to make regarding the cost of replacing the fan in a 5 year old cooker, which I have been told will be in excess of £100 to supply & fit with no guarantee on the repairers side that it fix the problem or buy a new Belling twin oven cooker that in the sales will cost just over £200.
I am now going the check the reviews on the new models and will advise you of the result.

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hi just brought leisure range duel fuel ck110f232,from day 1( saturday) cooking very badly slowly took over 2 hours lansana to cook but was still runny ,sunday roast 1kg pork joint cook 4 hours to cook ,pizza a 55 mins didnt rise ,called out repair man tested temp said nothing wrong ?no go in oven no heat blast when open door its use less dont know what to do brought £1040 last week?help

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I bought a Leisure ceramic hob cook master in Aug 16. From day 1 the fan oven didn’t work properly- doesn’t seem to get hot enough, food takes ages to cook and is soggy and almost as though it’s been steamed ? I try cooking at 10c higher than receipe suggests but food still doesn’t cook properly. In August Leisure sent an engineer out who changed the thermostat but it didn’t make any difference.
I’ve put up with it but now am sick of food never coming out as expected.
Can I insist on a refund?
Many thanks

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Hi Duncan,
Thanks for your reply, sorry I didn’t make myself clear. I did complain straight away to co op electrical, an engineer came out just 29 days after I took delivery of the cooker. He replaced the thermostat but this didn’t seem to rectify the problem. At the time my kitchen was undergoing building work and I still had my old cooker so used that to keep my new cooker- the Leisure- pristine until it was fitted into the new kitchen.
Once my old cooker went and I had to use the Leisure I realised the fan oven really didn’t work properly so called co op electrical again and they said I had to have an engineer out again. He’s due tomorrow morning.
I really want them to just take the cooker away as I have read so many reviews online where others have exactly the same issue as me ! I did read reviews before I purchased the Leisure but didn’t see any at the time regarding fan oven issues.
I will see what tomorrow brings!

Carla, it is the Consumer Rights Act that gives your legal rights, as you bought the cooker after Sept 2015. If you report a fault within the first 30 days you have the option of a repair, a replacement or a full refund. This should have been explained to you and if it was not and you were persuaded to have a repair the Co-op may have acted illegally by not explaining your rights.

Having chosen a repair that was not effective, in the first 6 months from purchase you have now the choice of a repair or a full refund. I suggest you contact the Co-op before the engineer arrives to do anything and point out that this is your legal right that you wish to exercise. You may wish to give them the opportunity of a second repair, but if so I suggest you tell them if that fails you require a full refund, and have that recorded – an email should do. You need to be sure, however, that you are using the cooker correctly.

I believe that is your legal situation but Which? may give better advice.

Hi Malcolm
Very many thanks! Will be on the phone to them as soon as they open today at 8 am !

Thanks so much for your advice, cooker is being collected on Saturday for a full refund. What a relief- now I can buy a cooker that actually cooks 😀

Good news Carla. Thanks for reporting it. 🙂 Credit to the Co-op as well?

Hi I have. 13 year old ‘ concept ‘ cooker.. The grill gave up up some time ago… The fan oven has now gone completely and the main oven takes ages to cook anything. I don’t want to call out someone to check it out because of charge involved when I’m presuming it’s probably just time for a new one?? Looking for advice. Thank you. Lisa

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My issue is hot air is escaping from the top of the door in the top oven of my new HUG61G Hotpoint Ultima oven

Whether or not it’s a problem I don’t know because Hotpoint are unable to confirm if this is how the oven should work. Incredibly to answer “technical” question of this type necessitates an engineers visit!!

I would have thought it was basic product information.

If I can’t get an answer without taking a day off to wait in for an engineer I shall be sending this back under distance selling regs to AO

Hi TeeJay,

I think that’s because you’re actually speaking to Domestic & General who handle all the calls for them and, sell policies where machines are out of warranty. For many manufacturers getting to speak to someone technical (in some cases that even have a clue) is at best difficult, even for the trade.

You will always have some hot air expelled, it has to go somewhere but as Hotpoint (now Whirlpool owned) do not play nice and allow access to technical information other than to their own staff nobody but them will be able to assist you with that.


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Hi – We recently purchased a Bush dual fuel range cooker.
The first problem we encountered was that’s as soon as we turned it on for the first time, both main oven glass doors shattered!!!! We were left without any working oven for six weeks! Replacement glass was never received so eventually, our cooker was replaced.
The replacement had two excruciatingly noisy fans & one of the two oven s did not heat up. An engineer attended & fixed these problems. However ………….
My issue is that both fan ovens produce masses of steam, so much so, that when I open either oven door, a great mushroom of steam escapes into the kitchen. Not only that, but condensation produced within the oven cavities , trickles out of both doors and onto the floor, making generous puddles of water!
I reported the issue 3 MONTHS AGO & 3 months on, we have yet to have an engineer to visit! I have a suspicion that perhaps many of these cookers have the same issue as ours!
Our oven is still well within the guarantee period & we have reported this issue many, many times & many, many times, we have been promised an engineer! They have now promised an engineer in two weeks time – but we have very little faith in the issue being rectified!
Has anyone else ever experienced this steam issue before? Thank you.

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Many thanks for your reply! Your suggestions sound very likely. There are indeed vents on the back of the cooker at the top behind the rings & nothing whatsoever comes out of these vents, they remain cold through the whole cooking process! Our previous cooker produced lots of heat which came out of the vents. We thought it odd that the vents gave off nothing at all. It would appear then that the heat & steam generated within the oven, has nowhere to go, hence the reason for all the steam & puddles?!
I shall update once the engineer has attended. Once again, many thanks for your time & concern.

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Chris Paton says:
15 February 2017

I bought a bush electric cooker with fan oven and grill last June from argos and have the same problem with steam, even when it’s on a low temperature. The white metal lip above the grill is now pitted and rusty with the result of the condensation. An engineer looked at it last week and tested the temperature and said it was spot on. I am waiting for the shop to get in touch to see what they will do about the lip, but the engineer said they might not do anything as it’s cosmetic!

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I came across your comment after trying to find a “problem solver” online for my bush electric cooker.i only purchased it in october 2017 and im experiencing the excessive steam and puddle of water you explained! I purchased a repair plan with the cooker would you suggest i contact them for an engineer to look at my cooker or insist on a refund?

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I have a belling duel fuel 7 burner cooker. My problem is the controls for the gas turn to easily. I don’t know how many times I have accidently turn one on by brushing against them. I don’t know what to do to stop this happening.

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Have had a Belling B170F since 2010. The glass in the oven doors slides out for cleaning purposes. While washing the glass with warm soapy water and then drying it off with paper towel , I held it up to the light to check it was streak free and the glass suddenly exploded in my face. The force of the explosion sent the glass all over the kitchen. Luckily, only small cuts to my hands and face. Customer service apologised and charged me for a new piece of glass.
Would be interested to know if anyone else has experienced the glass shattering like this?

The oven door will have been made of toughened (tempered) glass, which is more resistant to breakage than ordinary glass but can fail spectacularly, usually producing small fragments. I have abiding memories of a Duralex drinking glass exploding when I was still at school. Unlike ordinary glass which can produce dangerous shards of broken glass, toughened glass usually produces small pieces that can – as you have found out – cause minor injuries.

The side windows of cars, shower doors and some washing machine doors are other examples of use of toughened glass. There is a long running Conversation about washing machine doors that have exploded.

How very kind of Belling to charge you for a replacement door after you have been injured, Carol. 🙁

Hi Duncan 😃 Just to keep you informed re: our leaking Bush Cooker!
The engineer attended at last a few days ago. He inspected the cooker & concluded that there was minimum if ANY insulation within the oven walls of the cooker & deemed the cooker ‘unfit for purpose’.
This has resulted in an offer of a full refund along with compensation for the endless problems, the stress caused & lack of action in rectifying the problem of our leaking cooker!
We certainly will not be purchasing another Bush cooker!
Many thanks Duncan for your concern & time – so good to have a result at last! 😃

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Hi I bought A Belling cooker 2 years ago. Within 3 months the paint work started to chip around the rings. I got in touch with Belling and eventually i got a new cooker which i have now. Just after the 12 months guarantee, one of the rings wouldnt heat up. The chips of paint started to go in this one too. I am now down to two rings. I wrote to belling before christmas to ask how long does a cooker last and told them my faults, but no reply from them. Today i was using the two rings and the electric trip switch clicked up and i turned it back on and the trip went again. The ring today split…..a big crack down it. So i am now down to one ring. Do belling care?
I dont have the money to buy another one just like that. I will have to save up. I will never buy another belling ever again.

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Both me and my parents had similar Belling cookers that were still presentable and working after more than 30 years of use, though they required a few DIY replacement parts, particularly new oven door springs. In these days, Belling held a Royal Warrant. They are imported nowadays, but I know a couple of people who are happy with modern Belling appliances.

Paintwork is generally regarded as a cosmetic issue not covered by guarantee, so it is good that your cooker was replaced. You could make a claim to the retailer under the Consumer Rights Act but I suspect that cooker rings would be regarded as consumable parts, though the fact that several rings have failed suggests that there is a quality issue.

I would do what Duncan suggests and replace the faulty rings, but only if you are confident that you can do the job safely.