Along with the refrigerator and stove, the microwave oven has become an integral part of the modern kitchen. As a rule, it is used to heat food and defrost meat, but the functions of a microwave oven are not limited to this. Some models are able to bake, steam, and even equipped with a grill function. In the desire to acquire such a useful assistant, we go to household appliance stores and Internet sites, and there hundreds and even thousands of models are waiting for us. How to understand how one differs from the other, if they look almost the same, and the difference in price is several times? Let’s figure it out together. We collected all the information, highlighted the most important and found the secrets, so now we know exactly how to choose a microwave for your home. We will be happy to share our discoveries with you, trying to state everything briefly, clearly and to the point.
The myth about the dangers of microwave ovens
Ten years ago, television programs vying they intimidated us that terribly harmful rays come from the microwave. The population was afraid, they passed on what they heard to each other, and the results of this damaged telephone were sometimes unpredictable. Recently, the network discussed how grandmothers in line at the clinic said that the microwave changes the structure of DNA. Jokes are jokes, but such facts emerge from insufficient awareness.
How does a microwave oven heat food? The microwaves it generates set the water molecules in the food in motion. They begin to move faster and faster, which causes heating. Remember how in physics lessons they talked about the transition of kinetic energy into potential energy? This is what it is.
Should we be afraid of modern microwaves? No, it’s not worth it. The thing is that each such device receives several levels of protection, preventing microwave radiation from in any way affecting our body. Firstly, the door fits snugly, and if you open it, the microwave will turn off. Secondly, there is a protective grid on the inside of the device. Thirdly, there is also an electromagnetic “trap”. If this is not enough for you, then we add that all modern furnaces undergo mandatory certification with the passage of 4 levels of quality control and a radiation test.
Conclusion: microwave is very convenient, but not scary, and our myths, probably, in a century, our children will compare with the fear of riding the first trains and watching the first films. Unpleasant consequences can only occur if for a long time every day for 8 hours you are at a distance of less than 5 cm from the microwave, but it is difficult to imagine such a situation. Note that repairing the oven yourself is not worth it — this is just the same unsafe.
Now you can safely proceed directly to the issues of choosing a microwave oven.
In conclusion, we can say that now you know what is the difference between a built-in microwave and a conventional one, what power and volume of the device are needed to perform basic tasks. Recall that the difference between a built-in microwave and a conventional one is that such a device does not violate the integrity of the design. At the same time, the functionality is identical, it’s only in appearance.
To choose the right microwave oven, the rating of the best is also worth studying, and additionally viewing user reviews on various sites and forums.
Council number 1. Determine the purpose of the microwave
Why are you looking for a microwave oven? To quickly reheat and defrost food? Or in order to bake meat with a crispy crust and cook other culinary delights? The answer to this question depends on the type of equipment.or rather its functions, and, of course, the price.
All those microwaves that you see in the store can be divided into the following main groups:
- solo ovens;
- grill oven;
- oven with grill and convection;
- oven with grill, convection and steam generator.
In this case, the microwave equipped with microwave emitter only, due to which the product is processed. These devices are easy to handle heating and defrostingThey also know how to cook simple meals. Naturally, the price of these microwave ovens is the most affordable. This is a great option for the home if you prefer to cook on the stove and in the oven, and plan to use the microwave oven to quickly heat up food. Often such furnaces are also taken for offices. In this case, the simplest device that can heat the finished dish will fit — no other modes will be needed.
Note! Previously, ovens were sold with only one microwave emitter, so many complained that it was impossible to cook in microwaves, as the dishes remained raw. Many changes have taken place since then, but distrust of microwaves persists. Most modern ovens two or even three microwave generatorswhich emit waves in different directions, they are reflected from the walls and evenly distributed, providing high-quality heating and even cooking.
Such devices can affect the product not only with microwave radiation, but also with heaters (grill), due to which the microwave turns into a direct competitor to the oven. In this oven you can cook complex dishes and bake food until crispy. If the family loves to eat meat, and the hostess boldly goes for culinary experiments, then such a microwave will come in handy.
The grill function is ensured by the presence heating elements, which can be of two types:
- heating element has a complex shape, is placed on top or side, or both top and side. In some models, the heater is movable, and its location can be changed to achieve the desired effects. Ovens with a heating element grill are inexpensive, and the quality of baking is on top. Of the minuses, we note only the bulkiness of the devices and the difficulty of caring for the heating element, since it often has a complex shape;
- quartz grill takes up less space, is mounted on top, costs more, but is easier to clean.
In some microwave ovens you can find both heating elementsso that browning and creating an appetizing crust will be as simple as possible.
Microwaves with grill and convection
Such an oven Easily replaces a conventional oven. A fan is added to the microwave emitter and heating elements. Due to it, convection is provided. Roughly speaking, the fan overtakes warm air, it is distributed evenly, due to which the heating occurs quickly and evenly.
By combining convection, grill and microwaveradiation, you can cook any kind of food in the most unimaginable ways. There are about 20 programs in such microwave ovens, there is a manual mode, so the possibilities are limited only by your imagination.
Panasonic releases inverter microwave ovens with convection and grill. One of their differences is the increased volume of the chamber, which is achieved by reducing the size of the hardware. The main feature is automatic temperature control, which allows you to cook with significant energy savings.
Microwaves with steam generator
It’s still rare items on the market, and something tells us that they are not destined to become popular. Yes, the device turns out to be multifunctional: you can get a harmful crust in it, and cook healthy steamed vegetables easily, but you will have to pay a lot for it, and such a stove will take up much more space than its simpler counterparts.
In addition to the basic functions, the microwave oven can be equipped with additional “chips”.
They are not always important, however, their presence makes it possible to further facilitate the culinary processes.
So, for example, special multi-level grill allows you to cook not one in the microwave and several dishes.
The frying disc is used as a small frying pana the steam “container” is responsible for the preparation of healthy and dietary food.
Here’s another a list of cool, but not always necessary features:
- automatic weighing of products;
- double microwave radiation;
- dialogue communication.
Remember! In fact, many manufacturers, in an effort to increase the final cost of microwaves, are constantly supplying them with new features.
This should be taken into account when buying, since in standard situations, furnace owners rarely use all the possible functionality of such a device.
Council number 2. Deciding on sizes
Glancing at the shelves with microwaves, it is easy to see that even visually they differ in size. The volume of the most compact is only 12–13 litersbut there are monsters with volume up to 42 l. Which microwave is best? The answer is simple — the one that will cover your needs:
Comparing customer reviews, you can understand which microwave oven of which company or brand is in great demand. We have compiled a ranking of the most popular brands. It should be added that choose the Chinese assembly last, if there is no alternative. And, of course, all these companies are responsible for their brand.
- German Bosch (assembly Belarus);
- Korean LG — (Assembly Malaysia);
- Japanese Panasonic;
- japanese sharp
- German Miele;
- Korean Samsung (Malaysia assembly);
- Slovenian GORENJE;
- Swedish Electrolux.
Council number 3. Power is one of the most important parameters of a microwave oven.
The more powerful the microwave, the faster it will heat/defrost/bake. As a rule, the larger the furnace, the higher the power. This indicator ranges from 300 W to 2 kW. More is not always better. Here, as in the case of size, it is necessary to build on your own requirements:
- for solo ovens, the normal power will be 700–900 W — this is enough for heating and defrosting;
- for ovens with a grill function, a power of 1.2–1.5 kW will be sufficient;
- a convection oven will have a power of at least 1.35 kW, but it is better if this figure is at the level of 1.8–2 kW.
In all modern microwave ovens, the power can be adjusted. Older analogues of this feature are deprived.
Note! The power of the microwaves themselves, as a rule, is 700‑1000 W, the rest is the power of convection and grill. Let’s say the power of the microwave emitter is 800 watts, the grill is 700 watts, and the convection is 600 watts. Running everything together, we get a power of 2.1 kW. It doesn’t hurt to figure out in advance whether such a monster will be pulled by home wiring.
What size to choose
External dimensions are a secondary characteristic. It is necessary to pay attention to the volume of the internal chamber, where the heating or cooking is performed. It is indicated in liters (or in dm3).
Freestanding or built-in
Conventionally, all microwaves are divided into 2 categories:
- Embedded. They do not have an external decorative case. They are installed directly in the kitchen set. Their advantage is the saving of free space. Also, this technique will elegantly fit into the already decorated interior of the kitchen. But you should select strictly according to the dimensions (there are several standardized sizes).
- Stand-alone. An option for those whose kitchen set is not designed for the installation of built-in appliances. The microwave has a decorative outer casing, most models are presented in different colors.
There are also ovens with a microwave function. But they cost an order of magnitude more expensive, take up a lot of space and are mainly used in the commercial sector (restaurants, catering establishments). For private kitchens, they are usually not purchased.
What volume to choose
According to this characteristic, microwave ovens are conditionally divided into 3 categories:
- Up to 19 liters. The best option for heating food or defrosting semi-finished products, meat at home. You can also dry your greens easily in a small microwave.
- From 20 to 25 liters. Microwaves with this internal chamber volume are the best-selling. A universal option, in 90% of cases it fully satisfies the needs of a family of 2–4 people. Suitable for both heating food and defrosting, cooking.
- From 26 liters and more. An option for those who prefer to cook dishes in the microwave. It is often equipped with a grill grate, a convection system, which allows you to evenly “bake” the meat.
Council number 4. What is the best interior lining?
Often we evaluate the microwave externally. For many, it is enough that the stove can heat up and look pretty. The result can be disappointment. Before buying, it doesn’t hurt to look inside the stove and understand what its walls are covered with:
- enamelled coating — the cheapest option. Moreover, it washes perfectly, and all splashes and dirt leave it with minimal effort. Minus — low durability, but do not rush to get upset. Enamel is afraid of prolonged exposure to very high temperatures and shocks. So if you choose an oven without convection and grill, you know how to carefully place and remove a plate, then the enamel will serve you for a long time. If trouble has occurred, the enamel has been damaged and the metal has been exposed, then, alas, damage cannot be avoided;
- stainless steel perfectly withstands high temperatures, strong, durable. Nothing will fall off of it (as is the case with enamel), but such furnaces are also more expensive. The main disadvantage is the difficulty in care. Fat literally sticks to the walls, so you can’t do without special cleaning products. Patience will also be needed, since you will only have to work with soft sponges and gels — brushes and products with abrasive particles are contraindicated;
- ceramics or bioceramics absorbed all the best from steel and enamel. It is easy to clean and is not afraid of high temperatures, it is not afraid of scratches, it is durable, but microwaves with such a coating are expensive. Under strong impacts, ceramics crack, but under normal conditions there are no such impacts.
The cheapest microwave ovens use enamel imitation. There is no question of safety and durability, and after a few months, pseudo-enamel begins to crack and crumble. Do not take microwaves from little-known manufacturers that offer too low prices.
Choose the type of coverage
Having dealt with the type, dimensions and control, it remains to be decided what to pay attention to so that the internal coating lasts as long as possible. The inner chamber of the microwave oven is made of enameled or stainless steel, and may also have a ceramic or bioceramic coating.
Enamel. The most economical, but not too durable option. Such a coating must be cleaned immediately, and without using abrasive products.
Stainless steel. Durable and relatively inexpensive. Often used in grilled microwaves. The downside is the complexity of care — it is difficult to remove adhering fat from stainless steel, and traces remain from touching the surface.
Ceramics and bioceramics. In addition to stability, ceramics and bioceramics have antibacterial properties, retain heat well and reduce electricity consumption.
Council number 5. Functionality, or What should a microwave oven be able to do?
The answer is the same. It all depends on your personal preferences. Someone just wants to simplify the process of daily heating food, and someone is going to use a microwave oven for cooking. Naturally, the functionality in these cases will require different.
We will list the main features of modern microwave ovens, and you yourself choose which of all this you really need:
- manual heating mode available in all ovens. Everything is simple here. You just need to choose the power, time and start the process. Over time, you will understand how much time is needed to heat up various kinds of products;
- manual defrost mode. Here everything is exactly the same as with heating, only the defrost mode is turned on with a button or a rotary lever. Properly defrosting food in manual mode is not possible for everyone. A common result is ice on the inside and a toasted surface on top. To avoid improper heating and defrosting, some microwave ovens have automatic modes;
- automatic heating. The user selects the type of product, its weight and starts the process. The oven decides how much time it needs for an optimal result;
- auto-defrost. Time and power are selected by the stove independently, based on what type of product and weight you indicated;
- automatic preparation. Some ovens have ready-made programs for cooking certain dishes: convection, grill, microwave radiation, temperature and power are regulated without human intervention. There are usually 4–8 such programs, but there may be more. Some models allow you to add your own program;
- microwaves + grill. This mode, beloved by many, allows you to create a delicious crust;
- microwaves + convection. The mode provides faster cooking;
- convection + grill. The mode is used for baking and frying;
- bread maker function still rare, but allows you to make bread and buns in the microwave;
- delayed start — a great feature that migrated to microwaves from multicookers. You put, for example, a chicken, set the mode and asked to start cooking after 4 hours, for example. When everyone gets home, dinner will be ready;
- steam oven cleaning. There are far from all models, but it greatly simplifies the process of cleaning the walls of the microwave;
- odor removal. If you cook or heat dessert in an oven where fish was recently heated, then the dessert will be, to put it mildly, unappetizing. To avoid such inconvenience, some models have a special function that activates the built-in fan and allows the stove to ventilate faster.
It is foolish to overpay for functions that will not be used, so soberly, without hype, evaluate your requirements for a microwave oven.
Often, manufacturers complete microwave ovens with grills, trays, skewers, and even some utensils. You can use ceramic, glass or porcelain dishes. No metal plates and utensils with a metal border. The plastic must have a special marking that allows heating in the microwave.
The main criteria for choosing a microwave
Imagine that you have decided which microwave is better — solo, grill or convection. Now you can start considering the criteria for choosing a good microwave.
Wondering how to choose a microwave oven? A test purchase is a TV show that will prompt you in this difficult process.
It is worth noting that this task is not the easiest, so you have to spend time and effort searching for the optimal model, depending on personal preferences and budget. Many recommend that in order to choose the right microwave, initially decide where the device will be placed, how and when to choose a built-in microwave, how much food will be heated and cooked. So the choice of a microwave oven is very difficult, since there are a lot of plus criteria and no less manufacturers.
Next, we will talk in detail about the most basic criteria for choosing a microwave. This will allow you to reduce the list of applicants.
Types of microwaves
Earlier, we have already dwelled on the existing types of microwaves. It should be noted right away that it is difficult to get an unambiguous answer to the question of which microwave ovens are the best and most reliable, since each buyer has his own priorities. Your task in the process of choosing a microwave oven is to decide which options are important to you in the first place. And you can start just with the type of device:
- Solo. An economical and functional option that performs basic tasks — heating and defrosting.
- Grill. The presence of such a possibility increases the cost of the device, but also increases the number of functions. You can cook various dishes with a fried crust.
- Convection. This is a replacement for the oven, you can bake meat, cook pies, etc. The price is higher than the previously presented options, but there are more modes.
Here it must be said that there are built-in and freestanding microwave models. What is the difference between a built-in microwave and a conventional one — later in the article.
This criterion is also subjective, since it is influenced by many factors. At the same time, the volume allows you to understand how much food can be heated at a time.
If the device will be used by one person, 12–14 liters is enough. For two, the device already needs a larger one — up to 17–20 liters. If you are buying for a large family, then it is better to immediately purchase a model with a volume of at least 30 liters. Such a device will cope with meat, bakery products. What is the best microwave oven in terms of volume depends on the situation.
Which microwave is cheaper and works well? Solo models are suitable here — the ratio of functionality and price is excellent.
There are three types of interior coating that are most commonly used by modern manufacturers:
Enamel. Heat-resistant and wear-resistant material. Simplifies care, as carbon deposits are removed with ease. The service life of the device with such a coating is up to 7 years. The disadvantage is that there are scratches on the surface.
Stainless steel. Durable coating is not afraid of temperature changes. The key disadvantage is that the surface becomes dirty quickly and is difficult to wash out.
Bioceramics. When choosing microwave ovens in 2021, pay attention to the novelty among manufacturers. Bioceramics combines the advantages of enamel and stainless steel. Easy to care for, resistant to scratches, tolerates sudden changes in temperature. But the price of such models is 2–3 times higher.
What are the best microwave ovens in terms of reliability? It is enough to study the technical characteristics, namely, pay attention to which coating is used by the manufacturer.
Manufacturers use stainless steel and high-strength plastic to make the case. Which microwave oven to choose, or rather, with which case? Stainless steel is more stylish and modern, looks great in any kitchen. But on such material there are fingerprints. As for plastic, such a case is more fragile when compared with stainless steel, but such models are more affordable.
At the same time, plastic is different, if we are talking about high-quality, the case is able to withstand shock. Therefore, what are the best and most reliable microwave ovens, it is clear.
The oven door is a protection of a person from radiation. Therefore, this element in the design of the device fits as tightly as possible and is protected by a mesh screen. In modern models, brands have provided for blocking the door during operation and turning off the oven when the door is opened.
The door can be opened using a push mechanism, most often it is presented in the form of a button. The second option is to open the door with a handle. Next, we will focus on which microwave is better — mechanical or sensory.
Concerning this parameter, one can often find disputes among experts. As practice shows, the power ranges from 500 to 1500 W and above. Accordingly, to the question of which microwave is better in terms of power, the answer is unequivocal: with the highest rate. Power affects the duration of cooking. The most acceptable power is considered to be 800‑1000 W; this model of a microwave oven is inexpensive and is better suited for a family of 2–3 people.
Please note that not every wiring is designed for heavy loads. Therefore, before buying a device with maximum power, check whether your wiring can withstand it.
Most modern models are equipped with inverter power control. That is, you can smoothly independently adjust this indicator using a special mechanism. In most cases, manufacturers provide from 4 to 10 power levels, if necessary, the user can monitor the defrosting or heating process by independently setting the power.
Which microwave is better and with what power of microwaves? It all depends on the tasks assigned to the device. For cooking, frying meat, it is better to buy a more powerful device.
There are three types of microwave control:
Mechanical. This option is considered the most affordable and easy to use. Duration and power can be adjusted using the round switch. Disadvantages: difficult to maintain, low accuracy of parameter settings, limited functionality. The main disadvantage is the inability to track the exact time until the completion of the activated process.
Electronic. Most often, such models are equipped with buttons and a touch panel with a display. There are more functions, the ability to accurately set the time and power. Such devices are considered more versatile than mechanical ones. But the price of such models is higher.
Sensory. In this case, there are no buttons, a flat panel is presented for control. Easy to clean, multifunctional and more aesthetic.
Which microwave will a modern user choose in 2021, based on the type of control? Most likely a sensory option.
So, here there are two types of microwave, what is the difference between a built-in microwave and a conventional one — we will consider further.
Built-in microwave is considered more practical, since it can be hidden in any niche, while maintaining the integrity of the kitchen set. At the same time, you need to think about the placement of the device. The selection criteria for a built-in microwave oven are identical to a conventional appliance.
Separately standing. Such a device in the kitchen can be placed on the countertop, bedside table, on the top drawer of the kitchen cabinet, on the refrigerator or on a special shelf. Such a device can be moved at any time during the relocation process or during a move.
The built-in microwave oven is chosen by modern users more often because of its attractive appearance.
Did you know that there are microwave ovens without a turntable. Choosing such a device, you have to overpay, but you get more volume and easy cleaning.
Selection of additional functions
According to experts, any kitchen device should have a number of additional functions. To get acquainted with the characteristics and parameters of choosing a microwave oven, go to the official website of the company and study the exact data for the selected model.
As for additional functions, most often the devices have:
- Built-in bread maker and steamer. This opens up the possibility of preparing various dishes, desserts.
- Steam cleaning. Simplifies the process of cleaning from plaque, dirt and grease.
- Removing odors. If something is burnt, you just need to activate this option.
Separately, I would like to note the presence of microwave models without a turntable. Now microwaves began to enter the products not from the side, but from below. The table does not rotate, it is not there, the microwave distributor is moving. Such a device is characterized by a large volume of the chamber, ease of cleaning. As for the question of how to choose a microwave without a turntable, here the selection criteria are the same.
Now we come to one of the main questions: which microwave oven manufacturer is better to choose? After all, the range is really considerable, and it is difficult to decide even with a dozen companies. If we talk about the best and most reliable microwave ovens, then we can highlight the products of such companies as:
The cost of products from such manufacturers depends on the functional filling, but this does not affect the quality. All equipment of high-quality assembly from high-strength materials. Also, models from brands such as:
These are premium manufacturers, the products are of high quality and have an elegant, thoughtful design, most often a built-in microwave. Therefore, which company to choose a microwave oven also depends on your financial capabilities. If desired, you can find a good value for money. For example, products from the following manufacturers fit this definition:
- Whirlpool, etc.
What brand of microwave? It will be correct to study user reviews in different forums. Perhaps you can understand what the pros and cons of each brand are, this is a chance to form a general idea of both the company and the selected device.
More budgetary, but no less high-quality goods are offered by the following companies:
- Vitek, etc.
Most often, goods from such brands are affordable, but without additional options. Here are the best microwave oven manufacturers, which company to choose depends on personal preferences and budget.
Council number 6. What is the best way to operate a microwave?
Another important element to note when answering the question of how to choose a microwave for your home is controls. The comfort of work will depend on their convenience and logic. There are several options for implementing controls:
- mechanical, using several rotary switches. One, as a rule, is responsible for power and modes, the second — for time. Sometimes there is a third lever. These are simple, reliable and inexpensive furnaces. Minus — the inability to adjust the cooking time to within tens of seconds. As a rule, solo ovens and ovens with a grill are performed in this way;
- push-button electronic control allows you to fine-tune the microwave oven, set everything down to the second. The main disadvantage is the difficulty of maintaining cleanliness in the area near the buttons and under them;
- touch electronic control — it is modern, beautiful, comfortable. Nothing sticks out, which means that there is nowhere for dirt to clog. All processes are regulated as finely as possible. Minus touch electronics — low reliability. A power surge — and she risks failing. These stoves are, of course, more expensive.
Learn more about modes and features
Please note that the number of modes and functions depends on the manufacturer, model and price of the device.
The most common modes found in microwaves:
- Automatic defrosting and heating.
- Rapid defrosting and reheating. Suitable for small products.
- Automatic temperature maintenance. The device maintains the desired temperature so that the dish remains warm.
- Autocook. If the model is equipped with such a mode, then you can save recipes for different dishes.
- Launch delay. The mode allows you to heat up food at a specific time.
- Cooking programming. The presence of such a button saves the sequence of modes.
To understand how to choose the right microwave, you need to carefully study the technical specifications. In particular, pay attention to what functions the device supports. List of encountered functions:
- Double boiler. It can be found rarely, in the most expensive models. The option allows you to cook dishes for a couple, sterilize dishes and clean the walls of the appliance with steam.
- Bread maker. You get a 2 in 1 device. You can bake bakery products.
- Steam cleaning. Makes the camera cleaning process easier.
- Sound signal. Message about the end of cooking.
- Timer. You can record the time of cooking or warming up the dish.
- Blocking. Models with this function are especially suitable for families with small children.
Modern manufacturers are adding the option of connecting the oven to the smart home system. This is the ability to control the device remotely via a PC, cell or tablet. Next, we will look at the difference between a built-in microwave and a conventional one.
Council number 7. Where to put?
The microwave can be built into the kitchen set, or you can put it on the work surface. The built-in stove looks like part of a single whole, takes up a minimum of space, but costs more. If the kitchen interior is already formed, then it is better to take an ordinary free-standing microwave. It is placed on a work surface or on a specially fixed shelf, so as not to take away useful centimeters of the countertop.
If there is very little space in the kitchen, then take the most compact stove. By the way, any microwave oven, if desired, can be built into the kitchen set by building a box frame for it.
Anyone who has changed more than one microwave oven will tell you that:
- You do not need a large volume of the oven — the size should be such that a large pizza plate fits, and that you can freely put it in and take it out.
- Grill — you don’t need it, as the constant turning of food and washing the walls of fat will discourage you from grilling in a microwave oven! (In the oven, everything is much more convenient).
- Always heat food with utensils so as not to splatter the walls of the oven.
- Wipe down and wash the oven.
- Do not close the door immediately so that there are no smells in the oven. Let it ventilate.
- Set the radiation level to the maximum, and the warm-up time to the minimum (1 — 3 minutes). So the food heats up faster.
And a few more tips
Please also consider the following when purchasing:
- product color does not affect functionality, but affects perception. Choose a model that will not become a black sheep in the kitchen. A win-win option is a white stove, and a metallic-colored product will also look good in almost any kitchen;
- among leading manufacturers Samsung, LG, Gorenje, Midea, Bosch can be noted;
- the price strongly depends on the functionality, power and manufacturer. Savings are savings, but it is better not to take too cheap models.
Our TOP 11 rating: the best microwave ovens 2021 will help you find the right model.
For added convenience, you can purchase a bookcase to put two plates in the oven at once. It is also better to take a special plastic cap that will protect the walls from splashes and make it easier for you to care for the stove.
There are 3 types of settings and modes in microwave ovens:
The advantage of this option is reliability.
Adjustment of timers, heating power, as well as a door lock — all these are mechanisms without electronics. The chance of breakage is minimal. But visually it looks “outdated”: 2 handles, as well as a massive door opening button.
Instead of mechanical handles — buttons, more often — with a rubberized base (protects against the ingress of water, grease, dirt inside). Also reliable, functional option.
It rarely fails. But if a breakdown occurs, then you have to change the entire control panel, and such a repair will cost about 30 — 40% of the cost of a new microwave oven of the same model.
As a rule, there is either an insert made of ABS plastic or heat-resistant glass on the case. A touch film and markings of “virtual” buttons are applied on top.
Outwardly, such microwave ovens look the most attractive. In terms of reliability, there are at least complaints, but if a breakdown occurs, the repair will be expensive. Because it is impossible to change the sensor base itself, you have to install a new control unit. And this is 50 — 60% of the cost of a household appliance.
Grill, spit and convection
The simplest microwaves are able to perform only one task — to heat food at a set power. More modern models are able to partially replace the oven, taking on some of its functions. Thanks to this, it becomes possible to fully cook a wide variety of dishes in the microwave.
This solution seems to us quite adequate in several cases:
- if we are talking about small-sized apartments in which there was no place for a full-size oven, or if the microwave oven acts as the only available kitchen appliance — for example, it is installed in a construction change house or in the country;
- if quite often there is a desire to cook a portioned dish, which involves cooking in the oven, but at the same time it seems impractical to “fire up” the whole oven for it (for example, hot sandwiches for breakfast) — in this case, a convection microwave will act as a small oven.
In modern microwaves, in addition to microwaves, several solutions are used, and often they can be used simultaneously with each other.
Freestanding and built-in microwaves
When choosing a microwave oven, the first thing you need to decide is whether your microwave will be built into the kitchen set or freestanding. Built-in microwave ovens imply the need to calculate kitchen furniture in accordance with the dimensions of the appliance (including, possibly, ordering cabinets of the right size).
Such microwaves are usually purchased at the kitchen design stage, since subsequently an attempt to “embed” the device in the wrong place can turn into a rather significant investment of time and effort.
Free-standing devices are simply placed on the table or in the niche provided for them. They are easy to move to another place or put away for long-term storage (for example, if the microwave is rarely used, and free space is required to accommodate other kitchen appliances).
We also mention that at the stage of choosing a microwave oven, you need to understand whether it will be convenient to use it, namely, to decide on the design of the door. The hinges at the microwave door can be on the side or at the bottom. The door, thus, can open sideways or lean back on itself (like a classic oven). The choice is determined by personal preferences or design features of the kitchen set.
Traditional and inverter microwaves
In traditional microwave ovens, the magnetron can be in two states — on or off. Accordingly, various modes of heating power are implemented by periodically turning on and off the magnetron. The longer it is turned on, the hotter the food gets.
The longer the pauses between the inclusions, the more time the heated product has to evenly distribute the heat inside itself. It is clear that a mistake with the choice of mode can lead to the fact that some parts of the heated product will be too hot, while others, on the contrary, will remain cold. It is also often possible to encounter overdrying of the product.
The inverter furnace is designed to partially solve these problems. Its main difference from a traditional microwave is the presence of a special electronic power control unit for the magnetron (inverter).
Thanks to such a device, the microwave gets the ability to work not only discretely (on / off), but also at an arbitrarily set power with uniform heating of the product.
As a bonus, the inverter microwave does not have a transformer, which takes up a lot of space in the device case, as well as some energy savings, which may be more (or less) relevant, depending on the electricity tariff.
The more powerful the microwave, the better. Sounds healthy? In fact, the power of the microwave is a rather important, but far from paramount parameter.
Despite the fact that on the market you can find both tiny microwaves with a microwave power of only 500 W, and powerful built-in appliances that consume 1500 W, in most cases the power of the device is selected in accordance with its size. That is, it will almost always be sufficient to fulfill the tasks assigned to it.
If you still decide to take an interest in this parameter, then do not forget that the power indicated on the box is often the total power of microwaves, grill and convection. It is these values that you need to focus on if you select a microwave based on the load that your electrical network allows.
If you are interested in the power of microwaves directly, then in search of this information, you may have to use the instructions that came with the device.
In medium-sized microwaves, microwave power is usually in the region of 1000 watts — and this is perfectly enough for all tasks.
Which company to choose a microwave
The unequivocal answer is no. Each model has its own advantages and disadvantages.
But if you believe the statistics, then some of the most popular are (according to sales statistics, according to experts):
- Samsung ME83KRW-
- LG MS-20R42D.
- Gorenje MO17E1W.
- Hansa AMG20BFH.
- Candy CMS 20 W.
One of the advantages of the model is the increased volume of the internal chamber up to 23 liters. At the same time, its external dimensions are the same as those of other microwave ovens for 19 — 20 liters.
A great option for those who have a minimum of free space in the kitchen.
The main advantage of this model from Samsung is its low price. At the same time, the manufacturer gives a guarantee for 3 years, as well as an additional 10 years for the internal camera.
Of the shortcomings, only not the most attractive external design can be mentioned, the color of the enamel is black.
- modes — solo (without grill and convection);
- control type — using buttons;
- Has a digital display
- power — 800 W;
- coating — enamel.
Budget model from LG, chamber volume of 20 liters.
The coating is enamel, there is an energy saving function (at first, the maximum or average power is turned on, then it automatically decreases to the minimum). Power — 1000 watts.
Grill and convection are absent. There are over 10 integrated cooking programs.
Of the shortcomings mention:
- button labels are quickly “erased”;
- very short power cord.
One of the best-selling models of this manufacturer. The most technically simple microwave oven.
It is produced only in a single color — white (the inner coating is similar).
Of the shortcomings — only 12 months warranty, as well as a short power cord. And one of the key advantages is low cost. But there are no complaints about the quality of technology in the reviews.
- 800 W;
- coating — enamel;
- control — only mechanical (handles, door opening button).
It is a built-in model with a grill, the volume of the internal chamber is 20 liters. Power — only 700 W, but due to the internal coating (stainless steel), the distribution of microwaves is more uniform.
There are 2 color options: black and white. Management — touch. Grill — quartz (longer service life).
Among the shortcomings: low power, spots form quickly on the inner surface.
Candy CMS 20W
Model “solo” without grill and convection.
Management — mechanical (rotary knobs), power — 700 W, chamber volume — 20 liters. There is a quick defrost function.
The main advantage is low cost. Inner chamber material — heat-resistant enamel. If you believe the reviews, then it does not fade even after 3 — 4 years of active operation. But stains collect quickly, so you have to clean often.
Of the shortcomings, only a short power cord is mentioned, as well as a very simple design.
Manufacturer’s warranty — 12 months.
In total, when choosing a microwave oven for the home, you need to focus on: the volume of the inner chamber, the spray material, power, support for additional cooking modes (if necessary).
And even before going to the store, you should decide for what purposes you plan to use the equipment. This will allow you not to overpay for additional unused functionality.