In decades past, microwaves were a rare luxury owned only by the cutting edge, but today it’s really hard to imagine a kitchen without one. Given that they last 9 years on average, it may have been a while since you purchased your last one, but today we’ll be focusing on features and considerations to take into account when you’re in the market.
Modern microwaves boast an array of features and task programs aimed to make cooking easier, though truth be told, the average consumer won’t have much need for a lot of them. The things you really need to consider are wattage (which determines your microwave’s power) and whether you would prefer a unit with convection cooking or not. Convection units will cook your food not only with microwaves, but also with circulated hot air that provides for a more even cook as well as browning features similar to a broiler.
When planning a new kitchen, counter space is always a chief concern and microwaves can prove to be a real obstacle in that regard. Though harder to replace or repair, built in microwaves get your appliance off your counter and give you more room to work. Over-the-Range units can also move exhaust out of your kitchen by providing enhanced ventilation. A microwave’s ability to vent is measured in CFMs (cubic feet per minute); the higher the CFM, the greater the airflow.
Probably one of the most important considerations when selecting a microwave is what you’ll be using it for. In some families, the microwave is nothing more than a way to reheat leftovers, whereas others will rely on it as a second oven. If you intend on doing serious cooking in the microwave, be sure to select a unit that can not only accommodate your cookware, but also that has the wattage and sensors appropriate for more heavy duty use.
When it comes to selecting appliances that work for you and your family, it’s not only a matter of adjusting and working within your budget, it also saves you time and headaches in the long run. Knowing what’s available and what you’re looking for is the first step in finding the products best suited to your needs.