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The Kitchen Appliance Store buyers guide to built in microwaves

Avoid common ordering and installation errors

  
  • A standard size built in microwave will fit into a tall or base housing but not a wall unit.
  • All built in microwaves are not always the same height.
  • Ensure the microwave is correctly ventilated.
  • Some models have a grill some include standard oven functions. Get the right one!
  • You cannot build in a freestanding microwave.
  • Some older models require a building in kit but these are rare these days.

Microwaves - a definition

  • A type of electromagnetic wave whose wavelength ranges from 1.0 mm to 30 cm, used in radar, to carry radio transmissions, and in cooking or heating devices
  • An oven that cooks or heats food or beverages relatively quickly using high-frequency electromagnetic radiation.
There are essentially three types of built inmicrowave oven
  • Conventional microwave
  • Microwave with grill
  • Combination microwave

Conventional (standard) Microwaves

   This type is a microwave only! A conventional microwave cooks by using nothing but microwave energy. This type is available in various sizes and may or may not come with a trim kit/building in kit depending on the manufacturer.

Conventional microwaves are available to fit into a standard oven housing and some models will fit into a 500 or 600mm wide wall unit. Check the microwave and wall unit depth to confirm compatibility.

Microwaves can also be built into a low level housing below your hob for example.

This type of microwave normally has a button on the front to open the door and that door is traditionally left hand hinged however recent additions include models that look like an oven, not a microwave, so are ideal for stacking with an oven.

Some models do not have a turntable but instead use a stirrer to evenly distribute the microwaves.

The capacity of conventional microwaves can vary between 17 litres and 26 litres.

View our range of standard microwaves

Microwave with grill (browner)

   As it says, this type of machine is a microwave with a grill (browner) facility. The grill could be a Halogen heat source or a conventional element.

In the majority of these products the functions are: Microwave, Grill or Microwave and Grill together. This type of machine normally has a turntable and comes with a rack (normally 2 levels) to raise the food towards the grill. The grill power rating is normally between 800 watt and 1100 watt (1.1kw).

The interior of these machines is usually stainless steel to help with cleaning.

This type of microwave normally has a button on the front to open the door and that door is traditionally left hand hinged however recent additions include models that look like an oven, not a microwave, so are ideal for stacking with an oven.

Microwaves can also be built into a low level housing below your hob for example.

Some models do not have a turntable but instead use a stirrer to evenly distribute heat. The capacity of conventional microwaves can vary between 17 litres and 26 litres.

View our range of microwaves with grill

Combination Microwave Ovens

   This is best described as a Microwave, Grill and Oven combined in one unit and are also known as a Combi

The oven function could be either Fan or Conventional and there are a couple of models that have both. The important thing to remember with this machine is the word Combination. This tells you that the different cooking functions can be used in conjunction with each other. Not all combinations are possible. Some models offer 3 methods of cooking, and some only offer a combination of 2 functions.

These ovens are often used with a single oven to achieve a cooking capacity similar to a double oven, but with the convenience of a microwave.These ovens have a larger capacity than other microwaves. They are available up to 36 litres or more, a typical top/secondary oven on a double oven is 31 litres.

This type of microwave normally has a handle on the front to open the door and recent additions include models that look like an oven, not a microwave, so are ideal for stacking with an oven.

Microwaves can also be built into a low level housing below your hob for example.

Some models do not have a turntable but instead use a stirrer to evenly distribute the microwaves. The capacity of conventional microwaves can vary between 17 litres and 36 litres.

View our range of combination microwaves

Cleaning appliances

   We are often asked questions about keeping appliances clean. The most popular question being, How do I stop fingerprints appearing on stainless steel?.

The short answer is You cannot!. That said many manufacturers use anti fingerprint stainless steel so it is far less of an issue than it was.

If baby oil on a soft cloth is used to clean the front of the oven, this will keep them at bay, but will not stop them completely. Another useful aid to cleaning is the E-Cloth. This is a cloth that manufacturers recommend to use on the exterior of ovens etc., particularly stainless steel. These cloths are similar to a face flannel, and are best used slightly damp. Some manufacturers have tried to solve the problem by using a clear lacquer, which coats the steel and protects it from our greasy fingers. This does seem to be effective.

Generally, appliances that are offered in a colour are easier to clean. Often the surfaces are glass and colour is sprayed on the back. However there are still a large number of appliances that have an enamel finish, e.g. hobs and cooker hoods. These are relatively easy to clean, but enamel/painted finishes can chip.

Still not sure? Need more information? Read our frequently asked questions call us, or click here to email us.

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