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Why Is My Microwave Not Heating?


Like any appliance in your home, a microwave can break down and need repairs. Of course, this often happens at the moment you need it the most. Whether your microwave is leaving too many unpopped popcorn kernels in the bag, or your frozen meals keep coming out chilly, the appliance experts at North Town Services can help you troubleshoot and figure out why your microwave is not heating correctly.

Here’s our quick guide to help you identify which part of your microwave is causing it to not heat correctly, and some advice on how to fix it. We offer advice to some of the common problems you may be able to fix yourself. However, you must use extreme caution.

Microwaves contain parts with high voltages that could pose a safety threat and risk of a serious electrical shock, even when they are unplugged. For microwave repairs that require opening up the microwave’s inner workings, contact a trained expert to handle the problem safely.

For professional microwave repair in the Chicago area, contact North Town Home Services. We specialize in many high-end microwave brands, such as Thermador, Viking, Bosch, Dacor, and more!

Confirm Your Microwave Has a Problem Heating

Before investing your time and money consulting a professional, you want to confirm that there is a real problem heating. You can do this with the following steps:

Check the power settings. You want to be sure that your microwave was not accidentally left on a low power setting, which could cause it to not heat food as efficiently or strongly as it usually would. Press your microwave’s STOP/CANCEL button, then press the power level to ensure it is performing at 100% power.

Check if it’s consistent. To see if your microwave is heating inconsistently, fill a glass (or another microwave safe) measuring cup to the 1 cup mark, and place it in the microwave on full power for 1 minute. Repeat this process several times, using fresh water each time. If the water is not consistently warm, you have confirmed there is a problem with your microwave not heating.

Check if there was a power failure. If your home recently had a power outage, your microwave’s settings may be interrupted. Your microwave may display “PF” (for “power failure”) or the numbers “8888”, which is a common code that indicates the microwave lost power. There is an easy DIY fix in this situation that does not require a technician; simply press the “CLEAR” button and then reset the microwave’s clock.

How to Fix a Microwave That Won’t Heat

After troubleshooting the problems above, you may have a problem in one of several parts If your microwave will turn on but not heat up.

Problem: Microwave Is Making a Buzzing or Humming Noise

There could be a problem with your microwave’s high voltage diode or capacitor if your microwave is making a loud buzzing or humming noise and not heating food. The microwave’s high voltage diode is an electrical device that helps power the magnetron by allowing the current to pass in only one direction, giving the microwave the energy it needs to work. If this part is shorted or open, it may give off a burnt smell. Because testing a microwave’s diode involves discharging the capacitor and opening the device up, it is recommended you call a professional to test and repair this part to avoid the risk of electric shock.

Problem: Microwave Has Power but Won’t Turn On

When you close the door to your microwave, there are three or four door switches that activate and tell the machine that it is safe to begin heating. If your microwave has power but won’t turn on, it’s likely that one of the door switches are defective. Constantly slamming the microwave door shut can make these sensors defective, and only one faulty door switch can cause a problem. To test if this is why your microwave isn’t heating, look to see if the light inside your microwave goes out when the door is closed. If the light does not go out, you will need a licensed technician to replace one of the broken door switches.

Problem: Microwave Sometimes Heats, Sometimes Doesn’t

If your microwave is heating at a low level, or heats sporadically and then stops, there could be a problem with the magnetron. This is one of the key parts in a microwave since it is the one that produces the heat that cooks your food. Problems with a magnetron can occur with age, a faulty switch, or a blown fuse. If the magnetron blows a fuse, it could cause a ripple effect of falling parts throughout the microwave. To test the magnetron and switch, you will need to consult a certified technician who can safely open up the microwave and determine if a repair is needed.

North Town Home Services Offers Microwave Repair in the Chicago Area

Since 1927, North Town Home Services has been providing homes around Chicago with the most reliable microwave services available. We are known for our legendary customer service, and we strive to give each and every one of our customers a one-of-a-kind experience. We specialize in many high-end microwave brands, such as Thermador, Viking, Bosch, Dacor, and more!

For safe and reliable microwave repairs, contact us online or call 847-999-4600 to schedule an appointment today!

You may be interested in our blog post: Maintenance Tips for Your Microwave

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