Last week, to prepare our Sunday night dinner (frozen pizzas– who says I’m not a gourmet), I fired up our gas oven. A few minutes later, we could smell something burning. I opened the oven door to investigate. Smoke pouring from beneath the bottom of the oven, where the burner is located. At first, we thought that some food stuffs had got down there and were just burning off. But after several minutes with smoke filling the kitchen, I turned the oven off and waited for it to cool.
My preliminary Internet research backed the food leakage theory. I got out the owner’s manual to find out how to remove the bottom of the oven (just undo two screws and slide it out). Inside was a small pile of insulation in one corner, and a black chunk of coal-like substance near the burner.
The small pile of insulation was clearly nesting material. We live in the country and I had uncovered mouse nests before. This was nothing new. But the black coal-like chunk? Upon closer inspection, it bore an unmistakable resemblance to a small rodent, though thoroughly cremated.
The lesson learned from this bizarre incident is that food spillage is not the only cause of excessive smoke coming from the oven