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Hi Diane, that happened to me last year my daughter burned popcorn in microwave. I washed it out with baking soda and water, hot water. Then rinse it out good and place about a tsp. of baking soda in a small bowel with a little water set timer for 10 seconds on high power, this helps to nuetrilize the air flow and now you can use it with out any burn smell.
Most likely the magnatron has gone out and it runs around 90 bucks. If something is funny smelling then by all means don't use it unless you want a fire. If it were me I would replace the oven instead of throwing money nto a repair on a used microvave, they simply don't last as long as they used to. It won't hurt to take the cover off and inspect it for burnt wires that may have grounded out, if none found I would replace the unit.
Was the smell inside the cavity or inside the case? If inside the cavity it could be the waveguide cover. If inside the cabinet it could be a bad contact somewhere. I wouldn't use it again until you find out what is causing it.
YOUR GOING TO NEED A NEW MICROWAVE . the cap may be bad but the real bad smell you have is most likely the HV tranformer , if the magntron shorts to ground there will be a small smell if you dont pick up on that and your microwave is set to run another few mins the transformer will overheat and burn , then the fuse blows and the controls shut down . the end result , you have more parts bad than you have good . if you google " GE SPACEMAKER MICROWAVE FIRE ' you will see your not the only one , its getting to be COMMON . good luck
There are several things you can do to help git rid of that smell
First get a mild cleaner with bleach (soft scrub ect!) and clean entire oven inside and try getting that scorch mark off! a little pressure should lessen it ! (there is no filter inside! The plastic inside covering holds smells for a long time! you can also put a cup of white vinigar inside warm on high for 1 minute and leave in overnight!
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