Running a microwave oven (almost) empty

Here's a question for all the microwave experts. I know you shouldn't run a microwave oven empty because of reflected energy back to the magnetron. But how small can the food be to be safe? Like a tablespoon of cat food? Or 2 pats of butter? One friend told me to always put a small glass of water in the oven when heating small amounts of food. Any ideas?
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On 4/8/2017 8:44 AM, Art Todesco wrote:

Google it up. Not a good idea. I often use for small stuff and like the idea of buffering with water to be on the safe side.
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On 4/8/2017 8:44 AM, Art Todesco wrote:

If I'm melting 2T of butter it i only running 30 seconds. I've never had a problem doing it and the MW is over 15 years old. I'd not run it long like that but never had to. Not the definitive answer, but it works for me.
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On 4/8/2017 9:23 AM, Ed Pawlowski wrote:

One thing I forgot to mention, this is a new microwave oven. The old one quit after 7 1/2 years. The new one is the so called inverter model. So, lower power settings, rather than just pulsing on and off, it somehow changes the actual magnetron output. It works really well for defrosting and heating smaller quantities of food. As for melting butter, the low power settings work really nice without cause explosions of boiling water inside the butter.
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I have an MSMw, Masters of Science in Microwaves, but unfortuantely all they overed was microwave relay towers. Imagine a full year of classes on nothing but that.

I would think pretty small, but if the butter boils or vaporizes, or I guess absorbs all the enegy it can**, it won't absorb anymore and it will be like it's not there.
**How much can it?. After it's vaporized and above butter's boiling temperature, can't it just keep getting hotter and hotter until it's at the melting point of the microwave? Of the metal cabinet etc.

It takes 30 seconds? Maybe so. If it's no a timer and it only melted a few seconds ago, you're fine. But if you accidentally put it in 3000 seconds, don't put your hand in the butter vapor. It might not melt the microwave but it woudl be a fourth state of butter. ;-)

So you're asking us why? If it's worked so far I'm sure you're fine. Read my post today about my landlady who thinks if you close the car window the bees don't get in.
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On 4/16/2017 12:29 PM, Micky wrote:

I'm not. Art T was and I replied.
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