Air Fryer Not Heating Up


Last Updated: February 10th, 2023

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There could be multiple causes for why your air fryer is not heating up. It’s important to know the source of the issue before trying to fix it, as that can make things worse and permanently damage your air fryer. Let’s go through some common internal and external reasons why your air fryer may refuse to heat up.

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Air fryer not heating up due to a power cord or outlet malfunction

It would be best if you double-checked your air fryer’s power cord to make sure it is plugged in. If it is, remove the cord and plug a different appliance into the same outlet. If that doesn’t work, your outlet has probably malfunctioned due to a short circuit or breaker trip. You can use a multimeter or electrical outlet tester to carefully check your power outlet to make sure that it is actually faulty. However, always exercise caution and follow proper instructions, as these tools can be dangerous if not used correctly.

If your outlet is working, your power cord may be faulty instead. The delicate cables inside your power cord can quickly become damaged if stored incorrectly, such as by keeping them tangled or placing heavy objects on top of them. Sometimes, the wattage on your air fryer is too high, leading to a short circuit that causes the plug to get burnt. In that case, look at some low-wattage air fryer options.

A faulty cord can be replaced relatively easily, but make sure you buy the correct one with an appropriate voltage and connectors. It is best to ask a professional which power cord to go for.

Air fryer not heating up due to an open lid

If your air fryer’s basket is not correctly clicked into place and secured, this will lead to the lid being left open. Due to safety measures, an open air fryer won’t heat up. In order for an air fryer to heat up, hot air circulates throughout the basket. If the lid is open, this air will come out and can burn the user.

Some air fryers have additional safety features, such as latches or locks that must be put in place for the tray to get locked and for heating to start. Check your air fryer’s instruction manual to make sure you are following all of the steps correctly. If the basket isn’t clicked in place properly, the air fryer won’t start cooking.

Air fryer not heating up due to broken heating element

Another reason your air fryer won’t heat up could be a fault in the appliance’s heating system, which can be due to a blown thermal fuse or overheating. One sign of this is if your air fryer starts blowing cold air. The heating element is situated at the top of the air fryer cooking chamber. If this component is indeed damaged, it will need to be replaced, as the air fryer cannot work without it.

Thankfully, it is possible to replace an air fryer’s heating element, and, in most cases, you won’t need to buy a brand-new appliance. If the warranty is still valid, you may be eligible to receive a free replacement. If not, you can either take the air fryer to a trusted home appliance repair workshop or try to fix it yourself if you’re familiar with electronics. To do it yourself, you first need to identify what type of heating element your air fryer uses and find a suitable replacement. Once you have done that, ensure the air fryer is turned off, then swap out the old element for the new one.

Check your air fryer’s temperature settings and switch

It seems obvious, but most of us have, at some point, forgotten to adjust the temperature settings on our appliances. If you recently cleaned your air fryer or turned the temperature very low, such as for dehydrating fruit in your air fryer, you may have forgotten to turn the temperature back up. If you are cooking something that requires high temperatures, but your air fryer is set between 120-150 degrees F, it is bound to feel like it isn’t heating up. Simply set it to the correct temperature if this is what’s causing the issue.

Another reason for this low temperature setting could be a broken temperature switch, which is usually a knob or dial located on the front of your air fryer. This means that while your air fryer is able to get hot, it may be stuck at a very low temperature, or the heat setting is not being activated. For this, you will likely need to replace the temperature switch to activate the proper heat settings.

Air fryer basket is overflowing with food

While your air fryer basket may look deep enough to hold a large quantity of food, it is always best to leave some room in it. Air fryers work by circulating hot air in the basket, and too much food can restrict this airflow and reduce its heating capacity. The heat will be distributed unevenly, and your food will remain uncooked if you add too much food at one time.

Instead, spread your food out in a single layer and cook it in batches to speed up the cooking process and allow your air fryer to work at its maximum potential. Apart from hindering the heating process, overfilling your air fryer also has other drawbacks, including soggy food and excessive smoke production.

Your air fryer has not been cleaned recently

Sometimes, the issue is as simple as a dirty air fryer. If you haven’t deep cleaned it recently, a thick layer of grease and oil may have accumulated on the heating element and basket. To clean the basket, remove it from the air fryer and give it a scrub with warm, soapy water on a sponge. Rinse the soap off and make sure the basket is completely dry before placing it back into the air fryer.

It is equally important to clean the heating element in your air fryer. To get rid of grease, oil, and food particles from the heating element, use a vegetable brush (or any other brush with nylon bristles) dipped in dish soap and warm water and scrub gently. You can also use a mixture of water and vinegar or baking soda. This will have the added advantage of getting rid of any lingering odors. Make sure you don’t scrub too hard, or you could end up damaging your air fryer. Pat the heating element dry with a dish towel before operating the air fryer.


There can be many different reasons why your air fryer isn’t working, ranging from needing to be cleaned to a faulty heating element, temperature switch, or power cord. Before you go around replacing your air fryer’s parts, start with the simpler theories, such as cleaning it and checking if the outlet is working. Thankfully, you can usually fix a heating issue and get your air fryer up and running again in no time!

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Thomas S.

Hey there! I've been cooking for myself and loved ones since the age of 18. In our busy world I've always looked for ways to be more time efficient when it comes to preparing food but also creating tasty and healthy dishes. That's when I came accross air fryers a few years ago and eversince I am trying to spread the word of the benefits of these wonderful machines.