Question about Microwave Ovens

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Frigidaire over the range micro wave, smoking coming out of it Was cooking a baked potato using the sensor, smoke came pouring out from the top of the cavity where there is a light. Smoke filled the cavity. I opened microwave door to let out the smoke. There was no visible fire. Smell of electrical burning and smoke filled apartment. 1. What happened? Is it worth repairing? 2. When I opened door I assume microwave automatically shut off?? or was there some danger of microwave radiation? 3. Is it safe to just leave the microwave installed where it is, unplugged, and use as a cabinet shelf or is there any microwave danger? 4. Is this something I can take out myself or do I need microwave repair tech to remove from under the cabinet. Thanks for you help.

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  • seinfeldians Oct 12, 2010

    Thanks very much 1kbron.

    My main concern was whether there was radiation during the smoke or now, because there is still a smell there and I think I get a buzz/faint feeling. So you're saying that's just from the smoke/burnt part but not any radiation.



    I've called around and you're right about prices. I assume if I ever were to remove it, i'd have to hire microwave tech to do as from my readings there are electric dangers of uninstalling?



    Are you suggesting to plug it in again t use the light or vent? There is an automatic fan to air it out?



    I was thinking safest to never even plug it in again?

    again thanks

  • seinfeldians Oct 13, 2010


    Thanks very much. The reason I was asking about removing microwave myself (and probably not installing anything there-you're right about the costs so I'm getting a countertop microwave) was that this online manual of microwave repairs http://repairfaq.ece.drexel.edu/sam/micf... which has lots of warnings about the high voltage capacitor and being sure it's discharged, etc. Wasn't sure if by removing the over the range microwave from its cabinet position and unhooking whatever electric cord there is, I come in contact with the high voltage capacitor.

    If I leave microwave where it is, it does have that awful burn smell. Is it okay to spray air freshner in the cavity?

    Thanks again.

    Thanks very much. The reason I was asking about removing microwave myself (and probably not installing anything there-you're right about the costs so I'm getting a countertop microwave) was that this online manual of microwave repairs http://repairfaq.ece.drexel.edu/sam/micfaq.htm which has lots of warnings about the high voltage capacitor and being sure it's discharged, etc. Wasn't sure if by removing the over the range microwave from its cabinet position and unhooking whatever electric cord there is, I come in contact with the high voltage capacitor.

    If I leave microwave where it is, it does have that awful burn smell. Is it okay to spray air freshner in the cavity?

    Thanks again.

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Hi!!
Your microwave's wiring insulation probably overheated and started to melt, this could be due to defective magnetron or worn electrical connection, if you saw smoke, must likely, a wire harness plus defective parts have to be replaced, you are looking about $200 in parts + labor, not wort fixing if you ask me. The microwave is designed to shut off as soon as the door is opened, so don't worry about radiation. It is safe to leave the microwave use it as cabinet shelf although you may want to leave the door open until the smoke smell is gone, and check if you can use the light and filter accessories underneath the unit, No need to remove the unit if it can be used as a shelf, light and filter, besides, the holding hardware that is bolted into wall will be exposed.
I hope this answers all of your questions! Good day. Thank you for using FixYa!

Posted on Oct 12, 2010

  • Rene J Solis Oct 12, 2010

    If you don't feel comfortable with the microwave anymore, then you should replace it with a similar model. You don't need a Tech to install it, when you get the new one, it comes with installation instructions but you are not going to perform any installation, just swap ovens, two people can do it easier by unplugging from wall outlet, lifting it straight up about one inch and then away from wall. Installation will be reversal.

  • Rene J Solis Oct 13, 2010

    To get shocked by a capacitor you actually need to touch the terminals. The capacitor is inside the unit, so don't worry about getting shocked. The power cord is plugged in an outlet located inside the cabinet above the microwave, just need to disconnect the cord from the power outlet. Burnt smells are very hard to remove, specially if they are located in enclosed spaces. If you want to use the oven as a cabinet, click on the following link for tips to remove the odor.

    You may want to use clear tape to cover the openings inside the oven to keep odors out.

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