Things You'll Need
There may not be anything actually wrong with the rice cooker if it doesn't work properly. Make sure that you follow the directions and push the right buttons when you operate it.
Contact the manufacturer of the rice cooker to obtain replacement parts. You can find contact information in the owner's manual.
Just as its name implies, a rice cooker is a kitchen appliance that's main function is to cook rice. Some models even steam vegetables, make porridge or cook beans. Cooking rice on the stove top can be rather tricky. It can turn out sticky, mushy, hard or burned. Using a rice cooker can practically guarantee a perfect batch every time. As with other appliances, you can have problems using it. There are several things you can troubleshoot and fix yourself on a rice cooker.
Check the rice at the end of the cooking cycle. If it's not fluffy and cooked right, carefully remove the inner pot with hot pads. Look for dents and other deformities. If the pot has been dropped or otherwise damaged, it won't sit on the heater plate correctly. Look for rice grains and other debris on the heater plate that might interfere with the heating; wipe it off.
Look at the display on the rice cooker. If it shows all zeros, the lithium battery needs to be replaced. You probably won't be able to use all of the features until it's replaced. Replacement is basically opening the battery compartment, removing the old battery and installing a new one.
Notice that the "Keep Warm" function after the rice is done cooking doesn't work. After the water has evaporated, the appliance should automatically kick into the warm mode. If it doesn't, make sure you cooked more rice than the minimum amount the instructions specify. If there's too small of an amount of rice, the temperature will lower. A temperature lower than 140 degrees Fahrenheit will cause the rice to spoil. The temperature needs to remain above 140 degrees F to prevent bacteria from forming.
Inspect the power cord if the rice cooker won't operate at all, or if the cord is hot. Make sure the cord is the one that came with the rice cooker. Make sure the appliance is plugged into a working, standard electrical outlet that's not higher than 120 volts or 10 amps. Wipe dust off the cord with a dry cloth. If the cord is damaged in any way, replace it.
Kayar Sprang has been a professional freelance writer and researcher since 1999. She has had articles published by clients like Kraft Foods, "Woman's Day" magazine and Mom Junction. Sprang specializes in subjects she has expertise in, including gardening and home improvement. She lives on and maintains a multi-acre farm.