Over-the-range microwave vs. a counter top unit on a shelf?

Do all OTR units contain a fan/vent and light? Are they required, specifically the fan/vent?
If I want to clear space on my counter, what's wrong with mounting a shelf on the wall over my range and putting my counter top unit on it?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

What's wrong is: it is not fashionable to do it that way. Restaurants use microwaves on shelves, but then, a restaurant kitchen only makes money if it is efficient and practical. Equally practical in any kitchen, commercial or home. is a decent range hood vented to the outside. I may be wrong, but the microwave vent doesn't seem to be the equal of a good range hood. You may be best served with a good range hood and shelf mounted microwave nearby, exactly what SWMBO in our house has decreed.
Joe
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 1/25/2012 7:58 PM, DerbyDad03 wrote:

Basically, because many will think that it is somewhat crude (including myself).
Don
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 1/25/2012 8:58 PM, DerbyDad03 wrote:

It's probably not fire rated to be located in that area. The UL police will come and spank you.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I'd say the problem with just a shelf and no vent/fan/hood is that you have nothing to deal with smoke from the range. As noted in another thread, any hood above the range without an outside vent is very marginal, so it's probably only a small additional step down to having nothing if you can't vent it.
My first priority would be a vented hood over the range. As far as countertop microwaves, I think they are fine as long as you have the countertop or shelf space for it.
IMO, one of the stupidest things going on are all the folks buying expensive combo oven and microwaves, where you get a built-in microwave with a conventional oven below it. They typically cost $3000 and you wind up with a microwave that is smaller and less powerful than the $100 one you can buy at Walmart. I recently replaced my old oven/microwave with a new dual oven unit and put a $100 microwave on the counter. Looks a hell of a lot better and the microwave is big and powerful. And if it fails, I get a new one for $100.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
DerbyDad03,
We started with a microwave on the counter, moved it to a shelf to gain some space and then eventually put a new one over the range. The problem with a shelf is cleaning under the microwave. It easily gathers dust and the occasional food spill underneath and is more difficult to clean. With the shelf at about eye-level the dust and dirt is very visible.
You'll want a light and a fan with any over-the-range model even if the fan only exhausts to the room. Our new one even turns on automatically to dissipate the heat when we clean the oven in the summer. It is very functional placed over the range. The only problems are keeping the two clocks in sync (oven and micro) and re-positioning the cabinet above.
dss
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

We've over-the-stove microwaves in the last couple of houses. Even though they're substantially more expensive, we like them a lot. Less wasted space and they're in a convenient location (eye level). I've seen some in under-counter drawers that look nice but the selection is even more limiting.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 1/25/2012 5:58 PM, DerbyDad03 wrote:

I've never seen an OTR Microwave without a vent fan. Since you have to have a vent anyway, what would be the point? Unless you have an electric range with downdraft ventilation. I'm sure for a gas range you have to have ventilation to the outside.
When selecting an OTR microwave remember that there is a big difference in the vent fans. You can get one with a 600 cfm fan or as little as a 220 cfm fan. I read that you don't want to go over 600cfm anyway since the duct work isn't designed for higher air volumes than that. 400cfm should be sufficient unless you're doing a lot of high heat stir frying, i.e. kitchens in Asian households will usually have a very powerful vent fan.
If you have an electric range with downdraft ventilation then mounting the microwave on a shelf over the range would be okay, and no worse than a built in one with a vent fan.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I saw I difference in two models I used. The first I ran the vent to the external hookup.
I next I installed a combo turbo oven/ microwave again hooking up external vent.
The first installation, if you run the microwave it vents outside. On the second, if you run the microwave, it does NOT vent it to outside. But in both cases turning on the vent, always vents outside. I think it's because I have a combo unit, I don't think I can change it.
Greg
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Wednesday, January 25, 2012 8:58:10 PM UTC-5, DerbyDad03 wrote:

Hey Gord heads. No difference between venting when a microwave is sitting on a counter top verses a shelf!
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Hey, thanks for replying to my 19 month old question.
I can now make a decision as to what to do with my microwave.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Site Timeline

Related Threads

    HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.