Microwave Repair Vs. Replacement: Which Should You Do?

Back in the '80's, microwaves cost a small fortune, and they were not very good at cooking much of anything unless you were willing to wait a very long time for what you were cooking. Fast forward to 2018, and microwaves on sale at just the right time of year or purchased from a big box store may not cost you more than two pairs of pants. Mind-blowing, right? So, you might be asking why anyone would want to repair a microwave, rather than just replace it. If your microwave is acting weird, here is how to determine if you should fix it, or replace it with a new appliance.

​Is It a Cheap Countertop Microwave?

​Little countertop microwaves you can buy for your kids to take to college are definitely not worth repairing. In fact, if you get at least five years' use out of these, count yourself lucky. They were not designed to last long since they were meant to go to college dorms with college kids. Likewise, any other reasonably cheap countertop microwave (i.e., less than seventy dollars MSRP or retail price) is not worth repairing. It would cost you more just for the service call, and even if you took it into an appliance repair shop to save on the service call, the repair work, labor, and any needed parts might still cost you more than what you paid for the microwave.

​Is It a Built-in Microwave?

​Built-in microwaves are literally built into your wall above your oven or above your built-in oven. The range cooktop is often separate from both of these ovens. If that is the case, these microwaves are much more expensive. They are built to last a very long time, but will occasionally be finicky in operation.

Replacing a built-in microwave is more expensive than repairing it, usually. Ergo, if your built-in microwave goes on the fritz, try to have it repaired first, rather than replace it. The only exception to this rule would be that your built-in is seriously outdated and parts cannot be found for it anymore. Then replace it. 

Home Warranties and Microwaves

Home warranties can make repairs and replacements of your appliances cheaper- to an extent. Some home warranties want a "deductible" up front at the time of a service call. This payment may exceed the value of a new microwave, or come very close to it. Unless your microwave is a built-in, home warranty claims to fix a cheap countertop microwave are not really worth it. 

If you need microwave repair, reach out to an appliance service in your area.