Make as few changes as possible to achieve your goal, especially as you don't know what you're doing and it's 120v. I'd suggest just removing the heating element.
The heating and cooling and motion could have also caused circuit board pads to lift (where wires or components are soldered on); in which case you'd have to repair those with resoldering or bypassing torn traces with wire jumpers)
You could also find some retired appliance repairman in your community if it's that simple. It used to be a common profession before appliance were made disposable.