Buying a Microwave: Features you need to consider

Microwaves for home have progressed far beyond their original purpose of simply reheating leftovers and frozen dinners.

With the introduction of new microwave features such as convection baking and steaming, they have become unavoidable appliances for quick meal preparation.

Whether you prefer a compact countertop model or a larger over-the-range option, selecting a microwave from types of microwave oven is indeed a challenging task.

You need to look out for ones that align with your preferred brand have received positive reviews and most importantly, have all the required microwave features you need.

Therefore, to ace this task, a wise thought process is all you need! And that is; making sure to learn about all the microwave features you need to consider before making a purchase.

So, be ready to stick to the end because this blog is going to be super helpful!

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Microwave For Home: The Buying Guide

Since you are planning to buy a microwave for home which is obviously not going to be a cheap purchase, you need to put some thought and answer two most important questions before you go through the key microwave features;

  • What type of microwave do you need?
  • What size of microwave do you need?

To help you answer these questions, we will break down the types of microwave ovens along with the microwave sizes guide. Let’s begin!

Types of Microwave Oven

1.  Convection Microwaves

  • Convection microwave for home uses a special cooking technique that uses high heat and an internal fan to move air around, much like an oven.
  • These types of microwave oven offer adaptability that enables baking, roasting, grilling, and other cooking methods. They are available as built-in, over-the-range, or countertop options.
  • Even though they are more expensive, their versatility makes them a good investment, particularly if you want a cooking tool that can be used for everything and improves food quality.

Convection Microwaves


2.  Built-in Microwaves

  • Types of microwave oven that are built-in, including over-the-range models, provide flexibility for installation in a variety of kitchen spaces that meet the necessary electrical and size specifications.
  • They are frequently picked when designing custom cabinets or remodeling kitchens. The positioning of such types of microwave oven depends on the design and aesthetics of the kitchen and is frequently above wall ovens.
  • When choosing where to install a built-in microwave for home, keep in mind convenience and aesthetics. This is a personal decision that can be tailored to your needs.

Built in Microwaves


3.  Over-the-range Microwaves

  • Installed above your stove, an over-the-range microwave has a sleek appearance because it blends in with your kitchen cabinets.
  • Such types of microwave oven are regarded as opulent and provide special benefits like preserving counter space, offering under-lighting, and having built-in ventilation for odor and heat removal.
  • It is a great microwave for home because of these advantages, especially for tiny kitchens that have limited counter space.

Over-the-range Microwaves


4.  Countertop Microwaves

  • Due to their convenience in terms of setup, replacement, and purchase, countertop microwaves for home are extremely popular. You can use them right away after plugging them in; no complicated installations are needed.
  • Their size and whether they will fit on your kitchen counters should be your main concerns. Countertop types of microwave oven are the most affordable.

Countertop Microwaves


5.  Microwave Size Guide

  • Choosing the appropriate microwave sizes guide size is essential, as it should accommodate both your family’s requirements and the available space in your kitchen.
  • It is important to consider the number of people in your household and the dimensions of your kitchen when deciding on a suitable option.
  • Maintaining a perfect balance will ensure that your microwave for home seamlessly integrates into your everyday cooking routine while making the most out of its functionality.

Here are the ultimate microwave sizes guide you need;



Types of Microwave


Height (in)


Width (in)


Depth (in)


Capacity (in)


Standard and Large Microwaves

12″ – 15″ 21″ – 25″ 16″ – 20″ 1.0 cu. ft. – 2.2 cu. ft.

Small Countertop Microwave

10″ – 11″ 15″ – 18″ 12″ – 16″ 0.5 cu. ft. – 0.9 cu. ft.

Over-the-Range Microwave

17″10″ (low profile) 30″
24″ (compact)
15″ – 18″ 0.8 cu. ft. – 2.1 cu. ft.

Built-In Microwave

17″ – 22″ 24″, 27″ or 30″ 20″ – 25″ 1.0 cu. ft. – 2.2 cu. ft.


Key Features You Need To Consider

Power Output

The wattage of a microwave for home has an impact on cooking time and uniformity of heating.

Generally, microwaves with higher wattages (around 1,000 watts or more) are known for their efficient cooking capabilities. On the other hand, lower-wattage models may be less costly but tend to operate at slower speeds and might not offer as much reliability.

When considering microwave features, it is advisable to choose reputable brands and consult customer reviews for valuable insights.


While most microwaves for home have an average lifespan of approximately 9-12 years, it’s important to note that there could be instances where replacement may be necessary sooner than expected.

Therefore, in addition to durability considerations, it would also be wise to evaluate other microwave features offered by different models.

Reading user reviews and brand reputation can provide valuable information regarding the dependability of the specific model you are interested in.

Pre-programmed Settings

Different types of microwave oven commonly include preconfigured settings that enhance the convenience of cooking.

These settings or such microwave features differ depending on the model, encompassing a variety of options like defrosting and popcorn preparation.

High-end microwaves for home offer an extensive selection of presets for diverse cooking tasks. It is advisable to select a microwave with preprogrammed settings that align with your personal culinary preferences.


The sensitivity to different microwave noise levels varies from person to person. Before buying, if at all possible, examine the microwave features, especially the model’s noise output.

Despite the rarity of microwave noise issues, some models might be louder than others.


In terms of ventilation, over-the-range microwaves for home can take the place of conventional range hoods. Since not all types of microwave oven perform well in this regard you need to investigate the ventilation capabilities of any over-the-range microwave you are considering.


There is little convincing evidence that microwaves for home pose a health risk. Instead of the specific model, proper usage is what determines safety. Teach kids how to use microwaves at home safely. Look through reviews to identify any possible safety issues with a specific model.


Different types of microwave oven are available at different price points, with countertop models being the most affordable option.

If your kitchen layout permits, it is worth considering built-in or over-the-range microwaves for a more sophisticated look and to free up counter space.

These types of microwave oven may come at a higher cost but can also add an element of elegance to your kitchen.

Additional Technology Features

Inverter Technology: In some types of microwave oven, there is a feature known as inverter technology.

This innovative technology allows for more even cooking at lower temperatures, providing greater versatility compared to conventional microwaves.

Child Lockout Features:  Microwave features that include child lockout enable users to set a safety code, effectively preventing unauthorized use and ensuring the well-being of children especially. This particular feature enhances overall safety and reduces the potential risks associated with accidents or fires.

Combination Microwave: For kitchen renovation projects, it would be beneficial to consider combination microwave and oven units or appliances that can integrate with a refrigerator.

This microwave feature could streamline the installation process and potentially save both time and money.

Best Microwave for Home Recommendations

1.  Panasonic NN-SN67HSPanasonic NN-SN67HS

Panasonic distinguishes itself from other microwave types and prices through the inclusion of inverter technology in its microwaves.

The Panasonic NN-SN67HST, a midsize model with this feature, has been found to heat food faster and more evenly during testing.

Nevertheless, it is worth noting that there may not be a substantial difference in durability compared to less expensive alternatives. If your microwave usage is primarily limited to tasks such as making popcorn and reheating leftovers, you might not experience significant performance differences.

Moreover, to accommodate consumer preferences, Panasonic offers a variety of microwave sizes guides, and control styles.

2.  Toshiba EM131A5CToshiba EM131A5C

The Toshiba EM131A5C sets itself apart from other affordable microwaves with its visually appealing design and a variety of convenient microwave features that are not typically found in this price range.

Its attractive exterior, ability to mute the sounds, automatic reheating function, and user-friendly door handle make it an outstanding option for those in search of a midsize microwave.

3.  Toshiba ML2-EM09PA(BS)  Toshiba ML2-EM09PA(BS)

The TOSHIBA ML2-EM09PA(BS) shares similar microwave features but has a smaller size and does not include auto-heating sensors.
While these Toshiba microwaves are viable options, they may not necessarily surpass or have longer lifespans compared to similar microwave types and price alternatives available in the market.


Ultimately, a microwave oven for home is an essential appliance in the kitchen that offers the convenience of heating and defrosting food.

Nonetheless, it is crucial to carefully evaluate microwave features before making a purchase decision that aligns with your specific requirements.

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