Save your microwave
Chances are, you’re a big fan of your microwave. It’s the hero of late-night popcorn snacks, speedy meals, and leftover feasts. The least you can do for this handy cooking tool is to treat it well so that it’ll last you as long as possible. “Your microwave’s life expectancy is about nine to ten years, but this is when you maintain your microwave without causing early damage before the life expectancy is up,” according to Mika Kujapelto, CEO and Founder of LaptopUnboxed. Avoid these risky actions and your microwave will be around for years to come.
Neglecting to clean it
One of the most simple (but perhaps irritating) tips for maintaining your microwave boils down to keeping it clean. Sure, cleaning your kitchen appliances isn’t exactly a fun chore, but it’s pretty important when it comes to your microwave. Maybe you only clean it when there’s a sizable mess—but you shouldn’t leave those small, everyday stains, says John Bedford, founder of Viva Flavor, a site dedicated to helping amateur cooks explore the world of food and drink. “Food that remains on the sides will continue to absorb energy during future operations, and will burn the interior over a longer period of time,” he explains. Basically, your microwave is expending unnecessary effort to “heat up” the lingering remains of your past meals, which will eventually impact the components and shorten the lifespan of the appliance,” Bedford says. So wipe down your microwave after every use. He also recommends giving it a deeper clean once a month, which includes the exterior and the mechanisms of the door as well.
Microwaving certain foods
One essential thing any microwave cook should know is the foods you should never microwave. Benjamin Shrauner, Owner of Sell Your KC House.com, offers a quick primer. “Certain foods like potatoes or eggs can build up pressure when microwaved, and, when they blow, send a mini-shockwave through the unit, which can be damaging,” he told Reader’s Digest. You should definitely avoid microwaving a whole egg, since the water that the eggs contain can heat up and expand. Potatoes, though, can be safely microwaved; just make sure to poke a few holes in the potato with a fork so that the pressure buildup will have somewhere to go.