If you go into a big box store to start shopping for a microwave oven it won’t take you long to realize that you have a lot of options available to you. If you are shopping online you will have even more options available because you will be able to purchase just about any model from any manufacturer online. Because there are so many options available we wanted to put together a microwave oven buyers guide to help our readers pick the microwave that will work best for them.
The Type of Microwave
One of the first things you will need to think about is which type of microwave you want. Will it be a built-in, over the range, countertop, or even a drawer style? The two most common types are countertop models or over the range models. A countertop microwave will probably be the least expensive but it has the obvious drawback that it will be taking up counter space. An over the range microwave will cost more but it is not taking up counter space and has the added benefit of an exhaust hood.
The Size of the Microwave
You will also need to think about the size of the microwave you need. Consider how many people you will be cooking for. Consider how much counter space you have available if you are purchasing a countertop unit. Also make sure your dinner plates will actually fit inside of your microwave.
You will also have to decide which features are important to you. Some microwave ovens available today are much more than just microwave ovens. Some models also include a convection oven and are capable of grilling, browning, baking etc. These features can be great but you will also pay more for them.
Another great feature that is available on a lot of microwave ovens today is a sensor that determines when your food is done. The sensor can detect how much steam is being emitted by the food that is cooking and automatically shut the unit off when the food is ready. This is a great feature because it prevents over or under cooking.
Of course a lot of microwaves also have one touch, auto cook features that let you cook certain types of food with a single touch of a button. There are also automatic reheat and defrost options and these are the kinds of things you will be looking at when you are deciding on which microwave to purchase.
Another thing to keep in mind is how much power your microwave has to offer. Midsize to large microwaves are usually rated around 850 to 1650 Watts. A compact unit might be 600 to 800 Watts. Higher wattage means more heat and faster cooking times so you will have to keep that in mind.
So far we have mentioned the most important things you will need to look at before deciding on a microwave but one other very important thing to check is user reviews from customers that have purchased a model that you are considering. Researching user reviews online is almost like having your own team of product testers out there using a product and reporting their results back to you. Looking at reviews online is a good way to know if a microwave that looks good on paper actually performs well in the real world.