Question about GE JE2160 Microwave Oven

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I have display, but no lights, no fan, no power!

I found the envelope inside unit and tried to follow the diagnostic flow chart but it's not very good / helpful. Or maybe I just don't know what the heck I'm doing. Can set cooking time and when I press start, the microwave clicks like it is going to start heating, but I get no lights, no fan and no power, but the timer continues to countdown.

The only weird thing that happens is if I push one of the food heating buttons (popcorn, potato...etc) and then push start, I get a "sensor error". Since I've never used those buttons before, I don't know if it was supposed to start cooking directly after pushing "popcorn" or if I was supposed to hit start. Either way, it probably shouldn't give me a "sensor error".

Any help is appreciated!

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  • bcobb Sep 05, 2008

    More info: Just found the manual for a GE JEM31 (I think) and it does say that you will get the "Sensor Error" if you open the door after pressing Popcorn. So maybe you also get "Sensor Error" pressing Start after pressing Popcorn.

  • bcobb Sep 20, 2008

    Thank you SO much for the response. Since I did get the microwave to actually work again and then now it's not. It probably is the door switch. I'll look to see if it's loose and then test continuity. Thanks again for your response. You all rock!


  • bcobb Sep 26, 2008


    After testing my door switches, I have determined that at least one of them are faulty so I would list to replace them all as says. I have a total of 4 switches, an upper door switch, a lower door switch and then I have two switches below which are activated by the door opening latch/button (I'm assuming these are the "monitor" and "door sensing" switches?

    I'm assuming I should replace all 4?

    Thanks in advance!




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This is usually caused by either a bad door switch, a loose door switch mount, or occasionally a problem on the control panel.

Even though a door switch clicks, it may still be bad inside. Its continuity must be checked.

Door switch or mount trouble can be caused by slamming the door or by opening the door while it's cooking without hitting the Stop pad first.

There are plastic mounts inside the microwave which hold the door switches and onto which the door latches lock when you close the door.

The screws on these mounts may be loose. If they get too loose, the switches will not be activated properly.

Sometimes it's a broken tab on the switch holder, allowing the switch to rotate just out of position. This tab can be hard to see, since it is under the bottom edge of the switch.

One test that sometimes helps is to gently lift up (and/or push down) on the door or handle as you try to start it. If it works or tries to work, then it's a door switch mount or door alignment issue.

If you or someone you know decide to look into it, we have critical information on safety, disassembly and door switches at our site, and our link is at our listing here on FixYa:.

You can find helpful exploded view diagrams and order parts by entering your full model number here.

Glad you found the "mini-manual". It's very helpful when troubleshooting & testing.

If you only need a switch, you can order one from us for $5 postpaid.

If you think the problem is on the control panel, we repair these nationwide by mail for $39.95 postpaid in most cases.

We're happy to help you with free advice and we'd appreciate your thoughtful rating of our answer.

Posted on Sep 06, 2008

  • William Miller
    William Miller Sep 26, 2008

    The door sensing and monitor switch in today's microwaves usually do not handle a lot of current, so replacing the primary and secondary interlock switches is normally fine.

    Some may have one primary switch and the secondary is a relay, or vice-versa.

    Thanks for the FixYa, happy to help.



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The microwave oven may be provided with a self diagnostic routine that can be operated

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1.While pressing the CANCEL keypad:
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I recommend that you bookmark that link to your favorites.Feel free to contact me directly (and please include your full model number from the tag in or on the unit) for a free estimate and free tips & do-it-yourself advice.

William E. Miller

We're happy to help you with free advice and we'd appreciate your thoughtful rating of our answer.

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"Tampas de mica" in Portuguese translates to "mica cover". If these coverings are inside the oven cavity they are supposed to be there. Mica is a dielectric material that resists the flow of current. In a nut shell, they act as insulators to reflect RF energy inside the oven.

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