So the other day I was testing out banana bread recipes and every single one came out burnt on the outside and raw in the middle.  I figured I had the wrong pan or used the wrong temperature.  Then I Googled my problem and came up with a possible error.  My oven could be off.  I never thought of testing it.  So I grabbed one of my barbecue probe thermometers and wired up my oven.  Set it 350 degrees and watched it take off.  The preheat light turned off at 415 and the oven settled in at 428 degrees.  Wow this is hot I thought. Then I researched it and it is normal for an oven to overshoot at the beginning by as much as 50 degrees.  However, it will cycle and the median temperature should be 350.  However, the coolest my oven got was 365 before reheating to over 400 degrees.  Making the median temperature around 382.  32 degrees hotter than it should be.  No wonder all of my banana breads were coming out scorched.  Thinking back on it, it would explain why my frozen pizza that should take 12-15 minutes was done in under 6 minutes.  Makes sense now.

So then I thought I might have to buy a new oven.  It sounded cool, but then I saw the price and I was like no way.  Then I did a little more research and found that you can adjust the thermostat in the oven.  It was super simple.  I have a maytag oven so basically you set it to 550 degrees then hold down the BAKE button  for 10 seconds or until 0 degrees displays.  Then you can adjust the thermostat in 5 degree increments by using the up and down buttons.  I had to adjust mine 30 degrees down.

After a another test, I found out that my high temp was 370 and my low was 330 making my median temperature right at 350.   Now it seems to bake perfect.  I will have to get that banana bread recipe up ASAP.

I never thought that the oven could cycle so much and have such varying degrees of temperatures.  I guess that is why convention ovens are so nice.  Well since my oven is on the way out, I may have to start saving up for a new one.

Stay tuned for the banana bread post.

Rex is an avid griller, barbecuer and bacon enthusiast. He is the Pitmaster for the Rex BBQ competition team. Rex was also featured on the TV show American Grilled. If you have any questions or wish to have Rex decode your favorite dish, click on the ASK REX link in the menu above.


  1. If you still have problems now that you reset your temps (we just moved in and ours is 25 degrees high …now to find the manual!), I learned something the other day that was a definite "ah-ha" moment! According to my LG repair guy (out visiting for a freezer issue), if you have a convection feature on your oven,, it pre-heats using hot air and says it's ready when air is at temp. But, when you open the door, you lose significant heat out the door, the oven temp drops and the big temp swings start. (explains why my cook times were frquently longer than the recipe noted.). The solution is to let the oven heat up for 20 or 30 minutes to let the actual oven reach temp (like with a standard oven) Hope that helps!

    • TxMom – thanks for the input. Unfortunately I don't have a convection oven. At least not yet. Haha. If mine keeps increasing in temp, I will have to put it out to pasture. As of right now, the temp is staying pretty steady. Hoping it will hold out for a few more years.

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