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Appliance Tech Dave
Appliance Tech Dave, Home Appliance Technician
Category: Appliance
Satisfied Customers: 2611
Experience:  30 years experience specializing in Whirlpool, KitchenAid and Kenmore
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how does one remove the smooth top from whirlpool stove model

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how does one remove the smooth top from whirlpool stove model RF198LXMC0? I remove the two screws from under the lip above the oven door and the top remains solidly attached to the body of the stove.
Hello, and thank you for using this service. I'll be helping you with your problem today.

Once you remove those 2 screws below the front lip, there are 2 hidden metal spring clips below the top panel in the crease along the front. Use a putty knife to push back on the hidden metal clips about 3 inches from the left and right side. The top panel should then hinge up and backwards.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I need more specific information on location of these spring clips. I cannot get the putty knife that I have, which has a one and three quarter inch wide blade, in the gap that is three inches from the side of the stove top. How hard should I have to push? Do I have to release both sides simultaneously using two putty knives? I'm about bummed out here, have been trying to get this loose for hours. I think it will have to wait until later this morning after I have some sleep and find narrower putty knives.

You do need to release both at the same time. I'm not sure how to be more specific, but it's in the crease between the front and the top glass panel if they are there and you removed the screws but the top panel won't release.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

What you are saying that there are hidden clips that have to be released makes perfect sense to me. The trouble is that there aren't any clips that I can release. I have fished around with table knives and have put on magnifiers and illuminated the groove with light through the cooktop and minutely examined the area with my eyeballs. There is an eight and one half inch flange that runs across the center then two fore and aft channels two inches wide about six inches from the sides of the stove top that seem to support the heating elements. There is, on each side, the bracket through which the two sheet metal screws are attached to the stove. Each of these brackets has a raised area that provides a slot through which I can inset a table knife. These are about three inches from the sides of the stove. However, both by visual inspection and feeling around, there are no clips to depress. So far your answer is not sufficient to solve my problem. Your advice doesn't seem to apply to my stove top.

I'm not sure what to tell you because I'm not there and I don't understand the confusion. So I'm going to opt out and see if someone else can help you, and they can take over from here. I wish you the best of luck.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Will someone else contact me without any further action on my part?

aye, if someone else has another idea.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Relist: Inaccurate answer.
I need someone that has direct knowledge of this particular model appliance. I have spent many hours trying to remove this stove top. The answer I received hasn't gotten me any closer to solving my problem.
Hello, my name is XXXXX XXXXX I will help you with your oven. May I ask a question before we get into the top? Why are you trying to get into the burner area? What problem do you have?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

The left rear heating element is not functioning. I checked continuity from the heating element leads at the control and determined that there is no continuity to the heating element. I have found that there are numerous part numbers for this element and I want to get the number off of the part before I order a new one.

Okay, I just wanted to be sure the top needed to come up. You will need to release the clips as Appliance Doc mentions. A putty knife works best because it is thin and strong. It only needs to be inserted about an inch to release the clips. I generally slide it sideways to locate the clip and then pull it almost out, center over the clip and push in while pulling up on the top. Let me know how it goes.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Okay, I will try this and get back. This will be a while as I have an errand to run. Is there any particular reason that a table knife won't work? I don't happen to have two putty knives at the moment.

I never tried a table knife but they are thicker and not as wide as a putty knife.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Perhaps it is fruitless to continue to try this with table knives and I need to get two putty knives. However, I have slid and poked to the limit of my endurance and cannot find anything under the lip that will give in the least under pressure applied from the front. I'm sure that if I could see this with the top open it would be obvious to me. I am getting no results at this point so am completely frustrated.

Just to describe again what I see under there in the narrow gap between the stove body and the stove top, from left to right: first the bracket or pad fastened to the stove body where the fastening screw is located; second, a formed channel two inches wide that runs from front to back apparently supporting the heating elements. This curves up in front and apparently is attached to the stove top; third, to the right of this channel is a gap; lastly there is a vertical metal plate about six inches wide that runs from left to right at the middle and is apparently part of the stove top. This sequence is duplicated on the right side of the stove. It appears that any latch or clip that is there would have to be associated with the aforementioned channel. However, I have poked and prodded everywhere in the area of this channel and can find nothing that moves no matter how hard I press. So there I am.

I think on this model the screws you took out may pass through the clip that needs to be released. Try to push in at those points to release the clips.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Just achieved success after my final Herculean effort. It turns out that there was no latch or clip- this thing was glued to the stove base with some kind of adhesive which actually took paint with it when it finally separated. I now have the top off on the kitchen counter and will proceed with verifying that the element has failed. Thanks for your help, may be back with further questions as I proceed. Where do I give you the rating?

Yes, please ask if you have additional questions. You can rate off this answer. Thanks. Dave
Appliance Tech Dave, Home Appliance Technician
Category: Appliance
Satisfied Customers: 2611
Experience: 30 years experience specializing in Whirlpool, KitchenAid and Kenmore
Appliance Tech Dave and other Appliance Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I enjoyed my conversation with both of you but in the end you both led me astray rather than helping me. The problem had nothing to do with non-existent clips but rather that the top was glued to the stove base with some type of elastic sealant. I believe that one or both of you should have known this if you were familiar with this model stove. Looking for non-existent clips cost me a lot of time. Thus, although I enjoyed the support of your conversation, I will have to rate you as not helpful. I think you have learned more than I did through the conversation. Sorry

I understand that you are upset but this model does show clips in the parts list. The tops are not glued down from the factory but this could have been done if it was taken apart at some point. I am glad you got it apart. Rate as you feel is appropriate but keep in mind we can only go on what we see in parts lists, wiring diagrams and the information by text. Thanks.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.


I don't want to leave you with any misunderstanding. I am prepared to close out this request and have given you an okay rating. I do not feel that any of the available ratings cover the case in which the tech makes a sincere effort but simply does not provide a satisfactory answer. I eventually solved my problem through my own efforts. I understand that you can only go by the information available to you. I do not wish to argue these points but I am compelled to point out that I searched the parts diagrams on line for this model stove and find no clips either on the diagram for the stove top or the main chassis. The fact that I couldn't find them doesn't mean that they are not there in the parts diagram that you have. With regard to the sealant that was binding the top to the chassis, perhaps I was scammed, but we purchased this stove as brand new from Sears, not as an open box or refurbished stove. It has been in continuous service since we purchased it and has never previously required any repairs. Thus, I am left baffled by the presence of this sealant if your experience tells you it is never used in the factory assembly.

You need to rate as you feel is right. I was going by the clip or spring #2 in the parts list for the cooktop parts. In hind sight it may be the spring that is under each burner but I made an assumption that was not correct.