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How do you fix a toaster lever?

My toaster, just past warranty, won't toast any more because the lever won't stay down. I know it's cheap, but I don't want to throw away what used to work fine.

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The crumb solution worked for a few days (and I have repeated it several times) and then didn't any more. Any other solutions? (I am not a/the person who puts toasters in the dishwasher, OK?)

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OK. This worked for a friend of mine, but you're right - not really recommended. I'd tear down the toaster completely and clean it out. Something must be stuck somewhere. And always remember - somebody put this baby together, so there must be a way to tear it apart ;-)

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I have an older Procter Silex. I opened it and cleaned everything out, and the electromagnet contacts too. Got it all buttoned back up, and still dead. Bought a new one. Oh well, I did try.

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I dismantled my sunbeam AT-40 toastermatic to clean. after cleaning and assembling back, it does not lower itself when bread is placed on the toaster . can anyone help

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I opened my Osler, cleaned out the lever to the basket compartment...and presto...it worked....Thanks!

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I have done this a couple of times over the years. Often, it is caused by an accumulation of crumbs around the thermal shut off sensor. This causes the toaster to shut off quicker because it gets too hot.

The fix it is unplugging the toaster, taking the outer shell off and cleaning all visible residue out of the toaster. Compressed air, wooden skewers, and slightly damp, lint free cloths are helpful.

Reminder: if wiping with damp cloths, please let toaster thoroughly dry before reassembly.

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Well my goodness it worked. Am thrilled: one less toaster in the dump and my first piece of home fixit. THank you. JC

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I am so happy that my suggestion worked for you.

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Worked for me too. In my case crumbs had accumulated on the electromagnet used to hold the bread carriage down. An old dry toothbrush worked well to clear the debris.

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Our toaster at work wasn't working. I did the obvious of cleaning out the crumbs. I shook it several times and it still didn't work. So I googled it and this post came up. FYI! My boss was laughing at me the whole time. Without removing the cover, I used compressed air in the notch below the lever....and it worked! My boss is still laughing and now is giving me a hard time by asking me if I googled that too for anything I say.

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Oster pop-up toaster purchased 2003 .The owner unplugged the toaster every day after use and did the automatic cord rewind. The problem now is that the toaster works intermittently depending on how far the cord is pulled out. I am throwing out. If I put a new cord on the thing , it would violate the manufacturers intent (which was stupid but nevertheless) . The toaster could be afire hazard. Recommend , buy the other kind , the toaster oven is extremely reliable. Do not buy anything with a retractable cord. No power cord will last longer than six years if you roll it into a tight ball every single day for that long.

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Please do not put your toaster or anything electrical in the dishwasher. I do not care how long you let it dry. It is afire waiting to happen.

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+1 for trying to save someones life...lol

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Amen (to what Jay Farnsworth said). =8-0

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I disagree. Have washed keyboards many times in my dishwasher. Was convinced it would work after having accidentally washed an iPod and letting it throughly dry. Worked just fine afterwards. Bring all my keyboards from a lab I run at school and wash them once or twice a year. No problems. You CAN wash anything electrical as long as it is ABSOLUTELY dry before you reapply power. And you need to make sure they dry quickly. I usually lay them out in the car in the sun for a few hours. Crazy, I know. But I haven't lost one yet.

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That's a recipe for disaster and should only be used if you are about to throw it away anyway. It could also cause damage to whatever you have it plugged into (computer, electrical plug, charger). Some residue may be left even after it is completely dry. When I have done this, I have rinsed with isopropyl alcohol (very flammable) and allowed it to dry thoroughly away from sparks or flames, but my success rate has not been great. BEWARE!

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->James Roller.

"You CAN wash anything electrical as long as it is ABSOLUTELY dry before you reapply power."

I pretty much agree but I wouldn't wash them in a dishwasher due to salt and other nasties in the soap tabs causing corrosion and leaving deposits behind which may be conductive. Ingress of water into certain components can be a ##&&% to dry out which is why those components are normally fitted AFTER the wash during manufacture.

I have a background in electronic & electrical engineering but would not recommend washing electrical appliances for anyone who does not fully understand what they are doing.

You'd be surprised if I told you what (& perhaps whom) I have showed with :-)

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Please don't laugh. I'm not mechanically inclined and have not tried fixing kitchen appliances before, but I could not just toss the toaster in the trash and go out and buy another for about $10. My toaster (2-slice basic Sunbeam) wouldn't stay down, I inspected it to make sure the heating elements were indeed working, it's just that the "bread slice holders" stopped staying down; therefore, no toasting happened. I had already done the initial crumb removal, taking the crumb release door off and shaking/jarring to dislodge crumbs so that all would fall out. After crumb removal, the toaster mechanism would still not stay down. I found online that the toaster has a circuit board and a magnet involved with it's function. I looked at the outside and saw the the screws did not look difficult to remove, so with the toaster unplugged, I removed the screws that held the cover on at the end that has the "push down" lever. I laid those two screws and tiny washers in a place in my work area where I could remember where I took them off from and where I could easily put them back on when it was time to do that. I removed the push down lever knob and set it aside also, then removed the cover and set it aside, as well. I inspected the circuit board, soldering, and wires and as far as I could tell, all were in good shape. I inspected the magnet mechanism, the two parts, with one part being connected to the push down lever and the other connected to a round electronic thingy with a connector plate on top of it. I noticed a residue coating each of the magnet connectors and wiped that clean. Before reassembling the toaster, I set it down securely on the counter and plugged it in. I pushed down the lever and it stayed! I reassembled the toaster and now have a working toaster again! This may not be much of an accomplishment to some, but it is great satisfaction to me.

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i love it...that sounds EXACTLY like what is happening with MY 10$ toaster...i'm going to do what you did and hope i can salvage ol' betsy...

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Thanks for all the detail! This seems to be what's going on with mine too. :-)

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Chris,

Please instruct me on how to get the lever off. The cover won't come off until I get the lever off. If you have an e-mail address I will e-mail a photo of my Proctor-Silex unit. Thanks in advance. Earle earleb@rogers.com

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On my Proctor Silex the Screws are in the black feet , the other screws are holding the circuit boards etc to the Toaster Base and don't need to be removed. you don't need to remove the push down lever , just the round darkness knob which you can pop out with a flat screw driver or perhaps a butter knife. it is held by 4 plastic clips, go easy so you don't break them. The knob reveals a white plastic knob which is kinda floppy , this is so you can slide the outer cover up over it..be careful of it. For me Cleaning/scraping the electromagnets above the darkness/ timer knob fixed the issue. Last time it was the Crumb/gunk issue issue . Don't put buttered toast back in to warm it up again :).

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Might be a crumb jammed in the mechanism. If it has a crumb door, open or remove it. Give the toasted a good shake and tap the lever gently to try to get the crumb out. Try tapping the toaster against the counter and shake after.

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I was a bIG crumb stuck where it couldn't get out by shaking. I used the vacuum cleaner, the nozzle part. It went wrong again the next day and I just did it again. Hopefully it is OK now and thank you

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Another good comment. I have already cleaned out the bottom "crumb tray", but I didn't even think to actuate the lever while I had the bottom off. Thanks!

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The toaster mechanism stays down when the level triggers electric flow and enables a magnet at the bottom of the toaster, just below the down level. The magnet holds down a metal tab, located at the bottom of the level mechanism until the selected temperature is reached and electricity ceases. When the electric flow is disrupted the magnet is de-magnitized and the toast comes up.

Sometimes a crumb can be stuck between the magnet and the bottom of the level where the tab is located. You can either take the toaster apart or shake it, but it is not difficult to take apart and examine the mechanism. In my case, after cleaning, I accidentally allowed a wire that is usually to the sid, interfere with the magnet. I took the toaster apart one more time, moved the wire out of the way and the toast now stays down and pops when ready. Good luck.

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Lever stopped staying down after I had cleaned the crumb tray and by shaking it upside down to dislodge crumbs. Was just going to toss it but figured that I might as well try to fix it. Took the screws out of the bottom and used canned air to blow out more crumbs (I didn't believe how much was still trapped inside) Lever still didn't stay down. After reading this post I realized that I was testing it unplugged. So I rescued it from the trash, put it back together, plugged it in, and the lever worked! I just wasn't thinking because I knew it had to be plugged in for the lever to work. So I now have a very CLEAN working toaster.

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Had the same problem: removing crumbs did it!

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There are (as far as I know) two types of toaster mechanism. The first is the old-style mechanical, which uses a heat-sensitive (bi-metallic?) strip or wire that expands when the toast begins to reflect more heat (and turns brown) and pushes a trip-lever and pops-up the toast.

The other, more modern kind of toaster mechanism is electromagnetic. The easiest way to tell which one you have is by pushing down the toast carrier with the toaster unplugged. The old mechanical kind will stay down, but the newer electromagnetic style won't, because the electromagnet requires power.

I recently bought an electromagnetic-style toaster from a thrift store. The coils heated up, but the carrier wouldn't stay down. I took it apart and used a multimeter to test as many of the various components in place on the board as I could. The transistor (a small black cylinder with one flat side and three wire 'legs') seemed bad.

I desoldered and removed it, checked the part number printed on it and looked on the 'net for cross-referenced compatible replacement transistors, since I had a few in my junk parts collection. Luckily, had one that was compatible, soldered it in and the toaster has been working fine since.

Of course, if you value your time more than the cost of a new toaster, there's not much benefit. If you really like to fix things and learn and you have the tools and some spare parts, however, it can be quite rewarding.

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Yes, you need to use a good multimeter to test everything. Read more here for howto choose the best multimeter. http://www.zoniv.com/best-multimeter/

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Try plugging the toaster into another outlet that you know is working... or test the outlet with a lamp to see if the outlet has power. Many kitchen outlets are GFI outlets with a circuit breaker on the outlet. If the toaster is plugged into a GFI outlet, push the reset button on the outlet. With your power going on and off, a breaker may have tripped cutting the power to the outlet.

If the outlet is powered and your toaster is toast. Buy a new one... unless there's some type of fuse you can replace.

All the Best!!!!

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Hey this does not help, but Shirley is worth looking at ! Wow , thanks, Kit

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This did not help, but hey, Shirley is worth looking at !

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That one is a bit dangerous, but a friend of mine cleaned her toaster in her dishwasher, let it dry for 2-3 days and everything was fine.

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Yep it is working, i put my toaster in dishwasher and now working perfectly ..... thanks for edvice........

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Considering the source and reputation of this contributor, it might be a legitimate answer.

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I strongly advise against this. Dishwashing the toaster may remove some of the trapped crumbs, however it will almost certainly lead to corrosion of the terminals. To fix that issue would require spare parts, tools and electrical expertise.

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If this solution is no longer working it is possible that you might need a new thermostat.

Try finding a small appliance repair place which offers free estimates. That way you will at least get a diagnostic.

Sometimes for minor stuff; adjustments, there is no charge because they want your repeat business.

Hope this helps.

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If you buy yourself a used, vintage chrome toaster, it will solve your problem. I have been using a 1950 vintage Sunbeam toaster for 20 years and have never had a problem with it!

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I've been through 3 new coffee grinders the last few years, motors all burnt out, my mom has one from the 40's that still works like a champ!

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Ah yes, back when WE (here in the USA) actually made those products, and fortunes weren't "built" upon squeezing every last penny of profit, but built upon the word of "good product"... American-made products that lasted.

Today, everyone wants "cheap cheap" affordable, and can't do "without". Everyone must keep up with the Jones. Well America, you wanted cheap, became sheep, and now everyone is paying the price.

For the record, nearly all I buy IS USA MADE. Not always easy, but I do quite well, all things considered.

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I doubt it's a broken element, but this fix for that pleased me immensely, so here it is. Maybe it's a little dangerous, but I remain unscathed. If you can see where the heating wire is broken, you can push the ends together with a dry chopstick or two, or other non conductive heat resistant things. Do this while the toaster is plugged it and in toasting mode so that when the ends touch each other, a weld occurs. Wearing sneakers and rubber gloves couldn't hurt, nor could doing it while it's plugged in to a GFCI.

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It's not about the crumbs in the toaster. You have to ensure that all of the electrical appliences inside of the toaster is working, for example make sure that the screws are in the correct place. But do try and listen to the other advice and make sure that all the crumbs are out and that you keep your'e toaster in a clean condition to prevent it from happerning.

Thanks.

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Make sure your socket is working. That's what happened to mine. It works fine now that I pressed the outlet reset button.

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How do I remove the outer shell of a Hamilton Beach 2 slice toaster model 22121

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On my Proctor Silex the Screws are in the black feet , the other screws ae holding the circuit boards etc to the Toaster Base and don't need to be removed. For me Cleaning the electromagnets above the timer knob fixed the issue.

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I still use a Vintage Sunbeam toaster bought in 1979 and still works fine.......never had a problem with it...it is now 36 years old !

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I just want to put a comment here because I love Toaster. <3

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J Callaghan will be eternally grateful.
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