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Repair and disassembly guides for Kenmore Microwaves.

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E-11 error on display window

Kenmore microwave keeps beeping with an E-11 error on the window. What does this mean and how do I fix it?


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What is the model number of your microwave oven?


790.80353310 Kenmore microwave



What happens if you remove the power, leave it off for about 5-10 minutes and then reconnect the power? Does it reset to normal or do you get the same error message again?

Apologies if you have already tried this.


When the error E-11 shows up I turn the breaker off over night and turn it back on the next morning. Once I program the time the microwave works again. The error shows up when I am cooking and the microwave fan is on. As soon as the error shows up the microwave keypad does not work anymore. I am assuming the steam that comes off the stove while I am cooking gets into the microwave control panel and shuts it done with the E-11 error.


What is the model of your oven?


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If it doesn't occur when you are using the microwave oven and not the stovetop then from your description it seems that the humidity sensor may be faulty. ( Part # 28 click on Oven Cabinet) or perhaps it is doing what it was designed to do and protect the microwave in times of high humidity. If it only just started doing this and you have mostly always at some time had steam rising from the stove in the past then perhaps it may have become more "sensitive" and has at least not gone completely faulty and stopped you from using the microwave altogether.

Given the cost of the part and the lack of any information that I can find regarding fault codes, I am loathe to suggest that you find out if this is the case by ordering a new part. You may wish to contact Sears regarding their Returns/Cancellations policy as it might allow you to test the new part (before you install it) to check if it has the same "reading" as the old, which you will obviously have to remove first.

Removing it to test using an Ohmmeter (I don't know what the normal reading should be) might also not be too easy as it seems to be a difficult part to replace as the "degree of difficulty" in the repair is quite high (according to the part information page.

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my microwave is say e-11, if i press a button it wont do anyyhing.... why?


Hi @lauren_ordyne9 ,

Try turning off and disconnecting the power to the microwave oven for about 10 minutes and then reconnecting and turning it on again to see if it now works OK.

It may be that the humidity sensor in the microwave has operated and has stopped the microwave from working to prevent any damage from occurring to it.

Once it resets hopefully the oven will work again.

It's a safety feature to prevent damage to the oven due to high humidity (steam)


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At the time when the error E-11 shows up, I turn the breaker off overnight and walk out on a coming morning, when I calculate the time the microwave works once more. The error shows up when I am fixing, and the microwave fan is on. When the error shows up the microwave keypad doesn't work any longer. I am allowing the steam that falls off the range while I am cooking gets into the microwave control board and closes it finished with the E-11 mistake.

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Simple Temporary Fix: Use a hair dryer on the sensor.

Detailed Answer:

I have had the E-11 error several times and had to turn the breaker off to stop the beeping. Usually the next day the error will have cleared.

The error seems to occur at the most inconvenient moment. After researching that it is the humidity sensor, I went ahead and ordered a replacement, figuring I would install the new sensor the next time the error occurred.

Well, the next time the E-11 error popped up, it was right during meal preparation time, and I couldn’t take the microwave down at that moment to replace it. Knowing that it was the sensor, slowly going bad, and not water pouring into the microwave from somewhere, I turned the breaker off. I used a hair dryer on the sensor and it cleared the error quickly.

I put the hair dryer on low heat and aimed it at the holes on the inside back left corner ceiling of the cooking chamber. Holding the hair dryer on low, I moved it back and forth, about 3-4 inches from the holes that are below the sensor for about 30 seconds. See the photo. It doesn’t have to get very hot, mostly warm air on the sensor will dry it out.

After letting it cool off for a couple of minutes, I turned the breaker back on, reset the time and I was good to go.

The correct fix is to replace the humidity sensor, but if it’s not convenient, the hair dryer trick just might temporarily help.

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