Monday, September 14, 2009

Repairing Microwave Ovens

A lot of people have written to me about repairing their own microwave oven. But, there are some safety precautions that must be observed first.

First let me tell you a short true story about my friend that tried to repair a microwave oven. He did not follow any of the listed safety precautions or technical training and was electrocuted. Thanks to rapid medical treatment and a lots prayers he was still alive. After a month in the hospital and a pacemaker installed he returned home never able to work again. When I spoke to him and asked him what had happened, he responded by saying that he new everything but forgot to follow the safety precautions. That was 35 years ago and I never forgot what happened to my friend. Do not let this happen to you. I strongly recommend that microwave oven repairs should be left up to a certified technician to repair.

WARNING: Any person who cannot use basic tools or follow written instructions should not attempt to install, maintain, or repair any microwave oven. Any improper installation, preventive maintenance, or repairs could create a risk of death, personal injury, death to others, or property damage. If you do not fully understand the installation, preventative maintenance, or repair procedures on this blog, or if you doubt your ability to complete the task on the microwave oven, do not attempt to make the repairs. Call a certified company or the manufacturer instead.

WARNING: First, before attempting any repairs, unplug the microwave. Then when you remove the outer cover or gain access to the electrical components, you must discharge the high-voltage capacitor or inverter. Do not attempt any repairs if you do not discharge the capacitor or inverter first. The high voltage circuit can have up to 5,000 volts stored in the microwave oven circuitry when the electricity is turned off.

WARNING:If you do not know how to properly and safely discharge the high-voltage capacitor or inverter, do not attempt removing or gaining access to the electrical components.

I have listed additional safety precautions below for you to follow if you attempt to make any repairs.
* Do not operate the microwave oven with the door open.
* Do not operate the microwave oven if the glass in the door is broken.
* Do not allow children under the age of 10 to operate a microwave oven.
* Do not jump out or by pass any components to operate the microwave oven.
* Do not operate the microwave oven if the door hinges and door assembly are loose.
* Always perform a microwave leakage test before and when repairs are made.
* Before you begin to service any high-voltage components within the microwave oven, you must discharge the high-voltage capacitors and inverter first.
* Never touch any wires or components with your hands or tools when the microwave oven is operating.
* Never run the microwave oven with the oven cavity empty. The microwave energy needs to be absorbed into food or a liquid, otherwise, the energy will bounce around, making its way to the high-voltage system and causing damage.

Before continuing, take a moment to refresh your memory of the safety procedures in the use and care guide that comes with your microwave oven.

Microwave oven repairs should be left up to the certified technician or the manufacturer to repair.

Preventive maintenance of the microwave oven is left up to the consumer to perform according to the use and care guide from the manufacturer. Please follow the instructions.

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