When choosing an over range microwave, there are two important factors that should be given emphasis – functionality and aesthetics. It must be packed with the features that are necessary for a top-notch microwave while also having a design that will make it perfectly complement the look of your kitchen.
If you have no idea on what to choose for the best over range microwave, keep on reading the rest of this post and we will provide you with valuable insights. We will list down some of the most important factors to consider, and more importantly, we will briefly tackle five of the best brands and models that should be part of your list.
What is Over Range Microwave?
First and foremost, keep in mind that not all microwaves are the same, although it might seem like they all do similar functions. The most defining characteristic of this microwave is that it is installed off the counter, usually on the top of the stove. It has a hanging position, which makes it different from the traditional microwave that is placed on the countertop.
While it can offer the same functions as a countertop microwave, it has several benefits that you might find compelling. For instance, it is a good thing that it can significantly help save space in the countertop. You can use it for other essentials in the kitchen.
Another benefit is that it can also double as a range hood. With the latter, it will be effective in the elimination of smoke and odor.
If there is one thing that makes the over range microwave a bit tricky, it is the fact that its installation will require effort on your end. In this short video, you will learn some tips and tricks on how to do it right:
How to Choose the Best Over Range Microwave
As you try to narrow down the options that are available in the market, it is important to consider the factors that will be listed below:
- Size: Make sure that the over range microwave is large enough for your needs. Think about how many people are in the household. Also, pay attention to the amount of space that is available to determine the right size.
- Ease of Installation: It is a given fact that most of the models available in the market will be tricky in terms of installation. Make sure that the manufacturer provides comprehensive instructions on how to complete the assembly, as well as the basic parts that you will need when mounting the unit.
- Ease of Use: The product must have straightforward controls, making it user-friendly. There should be preset functions, which will help to eliminate guesswork. To add, make sure as well that cleaning and maintenance will be effortless on your end.
- Power: This will have a direct impact on the performance of the microwave. Most of the options that are available will have a power that is 1,000 watts. When the wattage is higher, this means that it is more powerful and it will heat quicker.
- Design: This is one thing that should not be ignored. Start by evaluating the looks of the kitchen or the stovetop. In most cases, an industrial design will work best. By paying attention to aesthetics, you can achieve a more streamlined appeal.
- Versatility: By being versatile, it means that the microwave will be good not only for reheating food, but also for other functions, such as for defrosting. See to it that it will be multifunctional so that you can use it for more tasks.
- Exhaust: Pick one that will offer an exhaust feature, which will help to get rid of smoke in the kitchen when you are cooking. Choose a product with internal and external fan, which means that it can get rid of smoke not only from the stove, but also from inside the microwave.
- Warranty: As much as possible, choose one that comes with a longer warranty. Within the warranty period, the manufacturer will offer free repair or replacement of parts if the product proves to be defective.
- Reviews: Still having a hard time deciding which one will make an excellent option? The best thing that you can do is to read online reviews. A lot of users are generous enough to share their experiences, which will make it easier for you to narrow down the possibilities.
Cleaning and Maintenance of Over Range Microwave
To make sure that your over range microwave will demonstrate superior quality and functionality, the following are some of the most important things to keep in mind:
- One of the most important is the regular replacement of the charcoal filters. Because the microwave also functions as a smoke vent, the filters can easily attract pollutants, making it necessary to have them replaced routinely.
- Right after every use, make sure to wipe the microwave to get rid of food particles or debris. They can harden overtime and can lead to a foul smell. Steam cleaning the microwave is one of the ways to prevent this.
- When it comes to cleaners for the oven, refrain from those that contain toxic chemicals. A combination of vinegar and water might do the trick. Make sure to avoid products that contain ammonia.
- It will also be good if you can use a surge suppressor. The latter will offer the protection that is needed by the appliance against fluctuations in electricity and lighting, among other concerns.
Top Picks for the Best Over Range Microwave
In this section, we hope to give you more insights about what are the best products available in the market and the features that will make them worthy of being taken into consideration.
This microwave comes with a capacity of 1.6 cubic feet. Among others, one thing that we love the most about this product is how it comes with 1,000 watts. This will not be short in terms of power. It will be incredible in terms of performance, especially because it distributes heat evenly.
Ease of use is also a plus for this model. While the controls do not have illumination, they are excellent because they are strategically-positioned. The functions are pretty-much straightforward. Nonetheless, you might need to exert a bit of an effort in its installation.
It is also good because of its innovative venting system. The latter is designed in a manner that it will eliminate smoke and steam in a short span of time.
When it comes to its functions, it can also deliver a high level of satisfaction. Aside from the automatic and timed defrost, there are also programmed buttons that will eliminate guesswork. Just choose the specific program that is desired and the unit will automatically calculate time and level of heat that is required for the task.
- Has a sleek and industrial design
- Easy to clean
- Extensive warranty coverage
- Control buttons have no backlight
- Can be a bit noisy
Among others, one of the best features of this model is its Inverter Technology, which allows it to deliver intelligent functionality. With the latter, you can expect that there will be stable stream of power to ensure the constant temperature and even distribution of heat.
To make it more powerful, it is also exceptional because it has 1,200 watts. With the latter, it won’t take long before it can produce the heat that is needed for a specific function.
The sleek design of the control can be good in terms of simplicity, but they are not illuminated. This is inferior compared to the more expensive model that comes with a touchpad control panel.
Feature-wise, you will be happy to know that this is a multifunctional appliance to have in the kitchen. Despite its space-saving design, it can do a lot. There is Turbo Defrost, which will be good for thawing food quickly. There is also a keep warm feature. Whether it is for oatmeal, pizza, pasta, or frozen meat, among others, you will be happy with the functions of this unit.
- Simple control panel
- Has inverter technology
- Heats evenly
- Poor dial design
- Not durable
RCA 1.6-cubic Foot Over the Range Microwave
If you are looking for an over range microwave that can do a lot, this is one option that should be part of your list. Aside from being able to set the time manually, there are also preset functions, such as for baked potato, frozen vegetables, ground meat, and popcorn, among others.
With 1,000 watts of power, it is more than enough for most tasks. To add, there are also six different power levels. This means that you can choose the amount of heat that it will generate depending on what you will do.
If you would like to prioritize safety, this model comes with a child lock. With the latter, you can have peace of mind since it cannot be accidentally operated by children.
Lastly, it is also a good thing that it comes with a stainless steel body. The latter will be an excellent choice if you wish to achieve an industrial look for the kitchen. Such choice of material is also exceptional because of its durability.
- Operates quietly
- User-friendly controls
- Has lots of features
- Poor ventilation
- Short warranty coverage
With a capacity of 1.75 cubic feet, this can prove to be an excellent choice if space is an important concern for you. The large interior means that you will be able to heat more at a given time. More than this, it can also deliver up to 1,000 watts of power.
This can also be a good choice if you are looking for a versatile appliance to have in the kitchen. You might be happy with the fact that it has multiple functions. Aside from the five options for sensor cooking, there are also dedicated controls for auto defrost and keep warm, among others. There are more than 30 functions from this over range microwave.
Another incredible feature of this product is the Space Wise Rack, which gives it a distinction above many others. This will allow you to cook or heat more dishes at once since you can place an upper rack.
The touchpad control is also worth noting, which contributes in making the product user-friendly. Simply touch the button for the desired function and let the unit do its magic.
- Made by a high-end brand
- Control panel has an elegant design
- Roomy interior
- Expensive price
- Minimal user reviews are available
The 1.7 cubic feet capacity of this model means that you can heat a lot at a given time. In most cases, there is no more need to separate them in batches. This also means that you can use even larger microwave-safe bowls and plates.
Another feature that you might love about this product is the hidden vent, which provides it with a more streamlined appearance. This is also good as it makes cleaning an easier task.
To add, there is also a two-speed fan that can deliver power that is up to 220 cubic feet per minute. With the latter, ventilation will be impressive, and hence, preventing the accumulation of smoke and steam inside the over range microwave.
- Operates quietly
- Affordable price
- Effortless to install
- Color makes it easily get dirty
- Fan has no cover
Now that you have reached the end of this guide, we hope that looking for the best over range microwave is an easier task. At the end of the day, make sure that it comes with an aesthetically-pleasing design without compromising its technical features. Take time to analyze its specifications to determine the performance that it can deliver.
While the products that we have mentioned are some of the best, my personal pick is GE JVM3160RFSS Over-the-Range Microwave Oven. The latter comes with an elegant industrial design that will make the kitchen look more stylish. More than this, it has excellent heating power for a wide array of functions.