How Long Should a Microwave Last? What are the signs that Microwave going bad?

How Long Should Microwave Last?

A new microwave performs very efficiently to heat/cook the food within a short period of time. When the time goes on it will come across some technical problems and repairs.

Every device will not last long more than its expiry date. Similarly, a day will come to replace a microwave oven too when there is a damage or serious repair to it.

Before replacing or repairing it’s better to know the probable life span of a microwave oven. Isn’t it?

So, “How Long Should Microwave Last?” is the question. Well, the microwave oven can last up to 10 years from the day of its usage. It should be replaced immediately with a new and best microwave oven in the market in your budget when it is aged more than 10 years. And there is also a chance for the repair/replacement of the parts that are damaged before 10 years.

Some technical issues also make the microwave to replace in the case of continuous damage. If you want to know about Technical issues, Signs to observe, then scroll down to the below details.

What are the signs that a Microwave is going bad and needs Replacement?

Sometimes a microwave oven behaves weird while cooking/heating where it is indirectly saying to replace the device or the particular damaged part. If you are not sure about the age of a microwave oven then here are some of the signs to observe that the microwave oven is going bad.

how long should microwave last

Electronics Burning smell

During the cooking process, if you observe an odor of burning electronics then immediately stop the process of cooking by unplugging the main power supply to the microwave oven.

This happens when there is damage, burnt caused to the diodes, mode antenna, and other electronics in the microwave. This is one of the signs we can observe only by the sense of smell.

Abnormal Sounds while cooking

Have you ever observed any sparks while cooking food in the microwave oven? This might happens due to some reasons where some are normal and some are serious to deal with.

Sparks can cause by the type of food material we keep in the oven. Vegetables are likely to be sparked while cooking as these contain minerals which make the microwaves to spark.

But the serious issues arise when the sparking is abnormal. The reason for this abnormal sparking might be the presence of metal and damage to the waveguide.

Because the inner cooking chamber is coated with the protective material of microwaves. The protective material gives a smooth reflection of microwaves in the oven. If there is any damage to it or, the presence of any other metal including the containers gives sparks in the oven.

As the damage to the protective materials will also result in the radiation leakage.

Irresponsive keypad

The continuous usage of the same button makes the keypad as irresponsive or damage to the keypad control panel might be a reason. And the keypad is also a heat-sensitive material may be the heat produced in the oven can cause the keypad as irresponsive.

As the keypad is irresponsive we cannot change the settings of it.

No heating

A microwave oven without heating is a useless thing. The damage happened to the magnetron which is one of the key elements to produce microwaves in the oven and also an indirect reason for no heating effect of food in a microwave.

Here the microwaves produce in the oven make the water molecules in the food to vibrate and produce heat in the food.

Problem with Door

The door is an important thing to consider before starting cooking. This door with a protective mesh shield will protect the human from the microwave radiation produced in the oven.

If there is any problem with a door like damage to the door latch, protective mesh, spring of the door will result in the microwave radiation leakage which is very dangerous for humans.

Sudden Stops while Running

It is really bad to observe the microwave stops suddenly while cooking. The problem for this might be the damage that happened to the main power supply to the oven.

Or else the improper working of buttons like on/off on its own might also be a reason for the sudden stops in the oven.

Formation of Rust

There are some cases of the formation of rust to the microwave oven either from inside or outside. However, the inside rust turns worn out into tiny particles and falls on food this makes food as dangerous to eat.

While the outside rust formation will increase its area by entering into the inner side causing holes. These holes result in the leakage of microwaves radiation.

If the holes and worn outs are small then you can fix it by repainting it. If not it should be replaced immediately.

Precautions to be taken:

It is a cost-effective and time taking process for repair. Here are the precautions to be taken to avoid technical damages.

  • Replacement of the damaged part is done as quickly as possible.
  • Regular maintenance is needed.
  • Proper cleaning.


Replacement might not be the only solution when there is any damage that happened before 10 years. Repairing the part by replacing it is also an option to choose in the case of damaged parts but it depends upon the technician to figure out the damage, charges for him, and the cost of damaged parts…etc. Some times the cost of repair becomes more than the average cost of the oven.

So, it’s up to you to choose between repair and replacement of the microwave oven.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Does a microwave oven use more energy than a normal oven? No, the microwaves use less energy when compared to the normal oven. However, the energy efficiency of a microwave oven is 600 – 1700 watts whereas the normal oven uses 2500 -5000 watts.

Does the microwave make my food radioactive? No, the microwaves make the food hot by penetrating into the food and by vibrating the water molecules in the food.

Is it OK to run a microwave empty? No, you should not run a microwave oven empty because the microwaves produced in the oven tend to reflect back to the magnetron and causes damage to it.

Image source:

Recent Posts