Wednesday, March 30, 2011


Today when I tried to boil some water for tea, my stove began to beep at me in a repetitive manner and flash the message “F-2, F-2, F-2.”

Me: Argh.

*hits Clear button on time display*

It began to do it again – over and over and over…. “F-2, F-2, F-2.” No matter how many times I hit “Clear,” it continued that incessant beeping.

Tallulah ran under the bed {cats are such problem solvers}, and I went to the filing cabinet to search out the instructions for the stove filed under “Warranties.”

“Seriously?” I can hear my nephew Chapman say to me: “Why would you look something up on a hard copy when you can just Google it?”

Because …. Because….. well, because I have this file…. and in this file are papers that I have religiously saved for equipment or appliances that I have purchased with their warranties, receipts, and instructions – you know, in case, well, in case I have my stove go off on me with some kind of cryptic code.

I found the paperwork for the stove, and the instructions on page 13 reads as the following: If the time display beeps continuously and flashes an “F” followed by a number, you have a function error code.

Me: Duh.

Note the number after the “F.” Press Clear/Off. Allow oven to cool for 1 hour.

Me: Argh, the oven is so not turned on.

If problem repeats, disconnect all power to the range and call for service. Advise your service technician of the number following the “F” in the display.

*flips page*

That’s it. That’s all this little hard copy of 25 pages of a Sears Kenmore Stove and Oven Use – Care- Safety- Manual for 229C4020P019-2 that I have kept in a file drawer for 10 years, in case I needed it, gave me? Are you kidding me? I have six pages of instructions about not leaving children alone to play in the oven, or climb on the stove, or make sure that I don’t store flammable objects in the oven, or wear loose clothing, or let my pot handles stick out over the edge, or leave the stove on while doing Zumba, but it doesn’t tell me what the code means?

For all I know, “F-2” means “Stand by for blast off.”

So, I called David.

David: Have you pressed Clear?

Me: Oh, press Clear? Hmm. I never thought of that.


Me: Of course, I pressed Clear! Hello. I’m the main stove operator around here, of course, I pressed Clear!

David: Well, I’m coming home before you hyperventilate. Then we’ll call a service techinican if we need to.

Me: Hyperventilate? Perhaps, you mean explode?

So, while David comes home from work to assist me, and the stove continues to beep like a truck in reverse, I pull up Google and type “Kenmore stove F-2” into the browser.

With two clicks, I am at a page that gives me this: F2: Oven temperature too hot. Replace relay board, if present, or oven temperature sensor (RTD). Check sensor harness.

Me: *rubs chin* Check sensor harness? Yeah, thanks Google, I get the same message as I did from the instruction booklet except with even more “what the hecks” over a sensor harness and the relay board.

Sensor harness? Relay board? Where I am? The Enterprise?


I just wrote all that to tell you this: my file of all this paperwork – totally overloaded and outdated. I had instruction booklets, receipts, and warranties for more appliances and such that we no longer owned than we currently own..


Good thing my nephews aren’t in charge of my estate and cleaning out my files and finding this type of stuff to have fits and giggles over after I am dead.

Phews: Aunt Harriett has instructions for a VCR, two analog television sets, a Oskar chopper, two portable phones, and … what’s this? Three answering machines? Lawd. That woman was ancient.

*shakes puny, and aged, fist at them from my grave*

BTW: David fixed the stove by flipping the breaker in the basement for the kitchen, and I cleaned out that file and laughed, but I did keep the booklets for what I still own.

You know, just in case.

Just in case, what, you ask?

Well, the Internet goes down.



  1. I keep the boxes and manuals for my stuff, but only so I can sell it later.

  2. We have a drawer JUST for manuals, it drives me nuts! We keep them "just in case" but when that moment arrives, we completely forget about them in the drawer and go online for answers anyway.

  3. Haaaa.....I have a shoe box crammed full of booklets and warranties for everything we have bought over the past 37 years. And the shoe box is a 40 year old "Town-flair" box. Half the items we no longer have, including the shoes!!

  4. Hey I did it.I am a follower.A computer challenged follower.
    Always un-plug.

  5. It was just trying to play Battleship with you...

  6. This cracked me up! I really enjoyed this.... glad I hopped over here from Glynn's place. I have a Longaberger basket crammed full of manuals myself! The only one I get out on a regular basis is for the Dish Network when I mess up the remote! Lori

  7. LMAO! I just cleaned out my drawer full of manuals too! Recycled half of them because we didn't own the thing it was for anymore. I did keep the dishwasher and washer/dryer ones although I'm not sure why...

  8. I have a massive file of manuals -- it never occurs to me to Google anything like that. I am ancient and old-fashioned as well. I was going to say, halfway through reading your story, when our oven flashes F-2, Brad goes downstairs and flips the breaker and that solves the problem. Sort of like when my computer freezes and goes all haywire, I crawl under the desk and flip the red switch on the power switch. Turn it off -- that's my solution to everything.