A guide to making your microwave last longer
Many of us want to minimise what we spend on our household appliances. However, sometimes microwaves don’t get included in that conversation. While budget models are relatively cheap by comparison to other appliances, there are a number of makes and models of microwaves that are more expensive. Some of these more expensive microwaves may also be built-in, meaning they are harder to replace.
In order to get your money’s worth over the years, you’re going to want to avoid getting it repaired or even replaced. Thankfully, there are a number of things you can do to stave off microwave-related problems. At Repair Aid, we repair microwaves – so we know a thing or two about what keeps them in good condition. Here’s our guide to making your microwave last longer.
#1: Keep it preprogrammed
It may seem silly, but all it takes is one misplaced zero and a hectic day and you can mistakenly end up not only over-cooking your meal, but completely destroying the microwave. To avoid such an unlikely-until-it-happens scenario from occurring, just use pre-programmed times. That way, no matter how distracted you get, you can trust that the ‘ping’ will always be on time. It also means the microwave is never over-stepping its boundaries as it’s using programmes that it was designed to use – thus extending its life.
#2: Clean it up, quick!
While it can be annoying, especially when you’re about to sit down and chow some food, it’s advisable to clean up any spills as soon as possible. This is due to leftovers and residue attracting energy when your microwave runs, potentially causing damage over time to particular spots where the stains are located. So give it a good clean as soon as possible – just be careful not to damage the mesh on the inner door. This is what stops radiation getting out into your kitchen and long-term exposure can cause skin damage or, if you like to press your eyes up against the microwave, cataracts in the eyes. So clean, but take it easier on the mesh! If it’s damaged, you’ll need to get it repaired.
#3: Never run it on empty
A lot of appliances being run on empty can often benefit from an ’empty’ cycle – such as dishwashers and washing machines after they’ve been cleaned. Microwaves, on the other hand, are different. Running it on empty can cause burns and marks because the energy has nothing to latch onto, such as water molecules, and the heat ends up causing damage to the inside of the microwave instead. While this isn’t going to be a problem in a short amount of time, it can be a problem if it runs empty for a significant amount of time. This can sometimes happen if someone uses their microwave to time their other cooking efforts, instead of just using the timer function on its own. If you’re doing that, stop – never run the microwave when it’s empty.
#4: Be gentle on the door
Ever wondered why the microwave cuts off as soon as you open the door? It’s because of the door latches. Microwaves often have numerous interlock switches that act as a safety buffer to ensure that the radiation cuts off before your hand reaches in. If you slam the microwave door, you risk damaging these safety latches – which are often made of easily broken plastic. This can, in turn, cause the microwave to stop working and will, again, necessitate repairs.
#5: Metal equals damage
When it comes to materials, microwaves generally respond quite well to the likes of plastics, ceramics and glass (as long as it’s, of course, microwave safe). However, metals are a different story. Metals can sometimes cause sparks to start flying and, if the metals catch the internals when spinning on the dish, it can even burn the sides and cause irreparable damage. So avoid metals in your microwave. Foil is fine as long as it’s wrapped tightly around your food, but should otherwise be avoided.
#6: Don’t DIY it
Eventually, all appliances run into trouble and repairs are unavoidable. Despite not being as complicated as ovens and other large household appliances, microwave capacitors still carry deadly electrical charges – even days after they’ve been disconnected from power. If you touch it, you will potentially release the built-up energy and get electrocuted or damage the microwave. So make sure you use a repairer like Repair Aid if you want your microwave to be fixed safely and professionally. We even offer you a 12-month guarantee on all of our work!