I love my 1950's Hotpoint PushButton range (Cat.No. 209RC21, Serial # 9076529), but the oven is no longer heating up to consistent temperature.
Anticipating needing a new thermostat, I've tried my local vintage supply company & GE, and they both say that part (WB23X5049) is no longer available. I think I may need a thermostat because both elements work, and the thing that looks like a wire coat hanger along the back wall looks pretty black and somewhat corroded. The oven does heat up, just not to a reliable or consistent temperature.
Before I try to find a repairman who will even know anything about my oven, is there anything I can do to identify the real problem?
~Tracy, the OldHouseOwner
You can try a heat safe thermometer in your oven first. Preheat to the desired temperature and check the actual temperature reading to see how far it's off. Unfortunately, even if you determine that the thermostat is not working right, it's going to be difficult to find the part and a knowledgable repair person to fix such a vintage stove. You can start at http://www.repairclinic.com. We often recommend this site for its wide range of replacement parts as well as guidance on how to go about repairs. Good luck!