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The grinding noise could be from the turntable motor, or the fan. Remove plate from oven and put a cup of cold water in, set for 30 seconds and run the microwave, if no grinding is detected it means the turntable motor is near end of life. If there is no change unplug microwave and remove top check the fan mounts tighten if loose, if straps are tight suspect the fan motor.
Hi, check the support rollers that the turntable is supported on, they may be stuck or catching on their bearings. remove the turntable and see if the noise is still there when you switch the turntable on. If it is the motor needs to be replaced. There is a panel under the microwave, held on by one or more screws. Remove it and you will see the synchronous motor inside. There should be a plug to disconnect the wires. Remove the motor and fit a new one. Ensure that the microwave is disconnected from the wall outlet before attempting any work on it.
Sounds like the bottom bearing has siezed. This is then rotating on it's mountings instead of nice ball bearings.
Just check it's not simply any support wheels you can easily get to.
It is possible to access this from inside. If you wish to repair it, unplug, and remove case screws. The drive assembly is easily visable from underneath. If you can get the main bearing off, clean it in parafin or WD40 and use a little light oil on it.
Make sure you replace the case properly - with all screws before attempting to start again.
The microwave generator is only active when electricity is applied, and usually the door assembly is integral to the microwave chamber.
Replace turntable motor. Not really that hard to replace or expensive. Remove all screws holding bottom panel (usually three across each side and one to three in front) to gain access to the turntable motor. The panel will hinge in the back.
Many thanks to e3enigma above! I removed the synch motor under the turntable; all other microwave functions work fine and the grinding noise is gone, hooray! A trip to the appliance parts store tomorrow for a replacement synchronous motor and all should be well. Thanks again!