We need a new microwave oven

We have a Panasonic 1.6 cubic foot, 1,250 w microwave oven, model NN-SN789S that has been the best microwave oven I’ve owned. Recently it has become a little balky. After setting the time, I push the Start button and it doesn’t go on. I open the door and close it, or try pushing the button, until it works. I don’t know how much longer it will last.

This model doesn’t seem to be available anymore, so I’m looking for alternatives. The replacement needs to be at least 1.6 cubic feet and 1,250 watts. Just as importantly, the beep needs to be able to be turned off. We hate beeping microwave ovens.


Here ya go.

I downloaded the manual, which clearly could benefit from an editor who’s fluent in English, to see if it indeed could be muted, and it says this:

“When the sounds turn off, long pressing on 8 for 3 seconds, it sounds a long beep and the sound turn off. All the buttons has no beep when they are pressed, including the ending cooking sounds is turn off too.”

Edit: I see that the reviews are all over the place. I put “Microwave Mute” in the Amazon search box, then did an F3 word search for “mute” on a couple that looked promising after looking at individual models. Might be a good way to narrow them down.

Thanks, Lancia.

I’ll mark that one for consideration.

The one feature that any microwave oven I purchase MUST HAVE is the “add 30 seconds” button. I will never buy a microwave without that again.

In addition to the +30 sec button, I insist on 1 button push. Press 1 - 5 and get that many seconds. I cannot imagine why they don’t all have that. Where is their human factors engineering? In addition to the +30 sec button, I would like them designed so that pressing 1 gives +1 minute. I’ve never seen that feature.

I would highly recommend getting a combination Convection Microwave. I can be used as a normal microwave, or a convection oven, or a combo of the two. This allows for quick cook times and crispy outsides.

I’m just happy that I learned about “F3 search”. :slight_smile:

(did you mean “that many minutes”?) Pressing 1 to 3 on my Frigidaire gives 1, 2, or 3 minutes of cook time (plus the +30 second button). I use it frequently.

I hate its beep - three long, loud beeps when done cooking. Then 15 seconds later, another three long, loud beeps, repeated every 15 seconds until you press Cancel or open the door. Very obnoxious. There was no way to test the beeps in the store - they don’t have the display models plugged in, probably so no one runs them while empty. I KNOW there’s a way to disable the beep, but criminy, their engineers must have thought for all of ten seconds about how to make the beeps work, and this is the best they could do (on a top-of-the-line model, no less).

I then noticed (after installing it of course) that some reviews complained about the beeping, so my advice is to check out reviews at Home Depot or Lowes or Amazon for features you’d like. (And it sounds like you have a bad door latch, which seem to break quite frequently.)

Brand/model recommendation? And no beeps! :wink:

I’ve noticed for quite a long time that the door latch was balky upon opening.

I am amazed at how junky microwave ovens have become. We had ours crap out after 11 years. It would just start up in the middle of the night. Talk about CREEPY. So we replaced it.

My last microwave that died recently was an LG. It beeped, but it wasn’t monotone, it played a little 10-note tune. What was notable about it was there was no numbered keypad, just a left and right arrow to add and reduce the time. Pushing “start” while it was on would add 30 seconds. It took a little getting used to, but when I thought about it I realized I almost never used the numbers from 1-8; I almost exclusively just hit 9, 9 for 99 seconds and hit “start,” then added 30 seconds as necessary.

My current one has a keypad but it does the “quick start” thing from 1-6. I almost never microwave anything longer than 6 minutes, so it’s one-button operation most of the time.

I hope you find yourself a good deal. I know how lucky I felt when I bought my current microwave, which was $129 … marked down from $129.99. I tried not to spend all of my savings in one place.

I’ve got a Pit-Worthy gripe that more-or-less fits in with this thread.

It’s actually about ANY expensive device that fails because some cheap-ass 10-cent part breaks and you can’t get replacements any more.

My microwave oven has a turntable. This sits on a plastic ring with three small pins sticking out with tiny plastic wheels on them. Eventually these wheels wear out and fall off their axles. I’ve had my oven about 10 years and it works just fine, TYVM, except for those little wheels. For a while I could get a new ring for something like $35 (that looks to me like it ought to cost $5), and now I can’t even get those any more. :mad:

My lesson: Next oven I buy, look for one with a sturdier plastic ring. And whether or not I can find that, be sure to get several extra turntable rings while I still can, before they stop making them.

ETA: I does, however, have more configurable options than most modern Internet Browsers, including one for some control over how beepy it is,

I found another Panasonic that fits the bill, for $175. Mrs. L.A. thinks it’s too expensive, and is suggesting a smaller one (0.9 cu. ft.) with less power (750 W, I think) for under $100. ‘Why do you need such a big microwave?’ :rolleyes:

As of last night, the existing machine is still working. fingers crossed I’ll wait until it fails completely before I replace it.

I have a double-oven in my house, and the electronics controls part above the unit has a fan in the back to keep the electronics from overheating. Three or four years ago, one of the five blades of that plastic fan broke off, which made an unbearably loud noise when running. The oven was installed in 1992, and every place I looked had no parts available. I tried to balance the fan by trimming blades on the opposite side and adding weight, but it wasn’t perfect so it was still pretty loud (the off-balance fan rattled sheet metal so it was like it was amplified).

So then I had the idea of just searching for a fan, not necessarily related to this model of oven. I carefully measured the diameter of the whole fan, and the diameter of the hole for the shaft. Within just a couple of minutes I found the exact part. When I received it, every little marking on the new fan was identical to the old one - I think they were made by the exact same plastic mold.

So maybe you could find this plastic ring and wheels that fit your microwave, but were made for a different model.

I assume this is not one of those over-the-stove ovens. If it is, then my recommendation is to not replace it at all but get a freestanding one - as all the over the stove sort are about 4 times as expensive and will fail within 5 years. Sample size of 3 here; all failed within 5, one within 2, in a dangerous manner. Two of the three would run nonstop until we unplugged them; the third I don’t know (we installed it in a townhouse we sold; we heard from the buyer a year or so later that it had died).

All 3 of these were GE brand. I don’t know whether GE is particularly bad with their over-the-stove microwaves, or other brands would show a similar history. We’ve had GE tabletop units that worked well for years.

Currently we have a Panasonic standalone unit. The cost of that, plus a nice set of metal shelves that dramatically expanded our storage space, was less than the cost of replacing the over-the-stove unit. It’s OK… there’s no “press 1 for one minute” or “add 30 seconds” functionality. It does beep when it’s done - but just one beep, then it shuts up. WHich is mixed - there’ve been times where I’ve been trying to heat water for iced tea, and I forget to get the water out, then a half hour later have to reheat it :D. Its “power level” is a bit counterintuitive as well. Instead of pressing the “power level” then pressing a button on the numeric keypad (1 for 10% etc), you repeatedly press the power level button until it displays the desired percent.

And it draws a lot of power. If we’re running the Instant Pot, running the microwave trips the circuit breaker.

It is quite large - I want to say 2 cubic feet inside but that’s relying on my memory.

Or microwave oven is on its own circuit – though admittedly, we have the toaster oven plugged into the same outlet.

The best microwave controller I have ever had was that analog turn dial.

This! X2.

I bought this one.

As for the Panasonic, the problem seems to be that it isn’t latching. We were able to use it since I posted the OP by shutting the door firmly, and then by applying some downward pressure when closing the door. As of last week, these measures no longer work. A handy person may be able to adjust the latch and have a good usable oven, but I am not that person. I’ve posted it on the Next Door network in case someone wants to give it a try. Otherwise, I suppose it will go into the trash.
ETA: The new Toshiba microwave oven is on the counter. The clock is set, and the beep is turned off. Neither one of us has used it yet…