Asked on Jun 12, 2017

Why do people put a Microwave over top of a Stove?

by Kitty
The most Dangerous place to put a Microwave is over top of a stove, but I see it in pictures of all new houses, or houses with makeovers! Don't you know it is the most Dangerous place to put a Microwave? Imagine, pots on the stove, cooking/boiling water/vegetables etc. Imagine you reaching over top of those hot pots, to put something in your over the range microwave! Reaching over top of boiling water and putting in and taking out the food or water you put into the microwave. Now imagine the unthinkable, taking the cup or dish of hot water or food from that microwave, with the steam from the pots on the burners, burning your hands, then you drop the dish you take out of the microwave, onto the hot boiling pots on the stove, causing the pots to fall over onto YOU! I shutter to think, your kids would put something in the microwave, and taking it out over top of those boiling pots on the stove! Whoever thought of this Stupid Idea , needs their heads examined! And those who follow this idea , are just as stupid! Even putting it on top of the refrigerator, is just as stupid! Put that microwave on on a table or on a counter where it is safe for all, especially for young people!
  8 answers
  • Nancy Turner Nancy Turner on Jun 12, 2017

    I agree with you on that, my mom has one like that, at5'1" it is a hard reach for her at 97 years young. I can not see my kids when they were little being able to use it safely having to use a stool or small ladder to reach it. It was a god send when they were young and needed a snack. My kids learned real young how to make popcorn, heat hot dogs, pizza rolls, etc. themselves safely and never had a problem. My oldest taught my youngest, who was four at the time, how to make popcorn without burning it.

  • William William on Jun 12, 2017

    I personally don't like the look and accessibility of an over the range microwave. I want an exhaust vent. And forget the micro/vent combos.

    Most microwaves are mounted over the range is to increase counter space. Especially in small kitchens. Also microwaves do not get as much use as a range. Would you cook a three or more course meal in a microwave? Would you prepare a complete holiday meal in a microwave?

    One problem I read about again and again is that lower O-T-R microwaves, when hung too low, can make the kitchen feel closed in; but when hung too high, they can be impractical for shorter people to use or seem too close to the ceiling.

    Critics claimed that young kids aren’t able to use above-the-range microwaves safely, and I suppose that’s true … but who lets their three to ten year-olds to microwave yet, anyway.

    Another safety concern that I’ve seen mentioned is that if you lean over the range while one of the burners is on to reach up into the microwave, you could catch your clothes on fire. While this is technically true, most rarely use the microwave and range-top at the same time and in general.

    I think part of the reason these potential issues aren't a big deal is that many just aren’t big microwave users. They use the stovetop for cooking almost anything, and use the microwave mostly for reheating plates of food or occasionally making popcorn.

  • That certainly is your opinion. Now consider a different view - I have an over the range with fan vent combo that vents to the outside and I love it and would not have it any other way - for me . . . I am 5'10" and everything is far too low for me - EVERYTHING. Plus I do not "cook" in the microwave, I cook on the stove, and in the oven. And I cook e v e r y day. And have 6 cats, 6 dogs and to date have never dropped anything, ever.

    While your concerns are valid, in your home, have it your way. In my mom's house, I would never dream of this set up as she was only 5'1" and dangerous for her. I had the appliances separate.

    As to cleaning anything, I use common sense and wait until the stove or oven is cool enough to do so. The microwave basically gets clean because it is there and not because it is dirty.

    Our households no longer include children, we do what suits us best. Even when we did have kids, they were all taught at an appropriate age, one of our kids was cooking full family meals by age 10, with supervision, of course. It is an individual choice and no one should be criticized how they want set up their own home. I am not a big microwave user to begin with, the vented fan gets more use than the microwave. Let some common sense prevail - and we are all individuals with different needs, wants and tastes - it would be dull if everything was the same everywhere.

  • its an old design to give more counter space because some of the microwaves do have vents for the oven. If you are shorter then most get a step stool which I have invested in a few for my daughter because she is on the shorter side of all these kitchen cabinets so high to the roof...but just be aware of what and when your cooking. and like the old saying goes KEEP PON HANDLES TURNED IN NO MATTER WHAT...I have taught my daughters that because 2 or 3rd degree burns are not so nice to have or get..

  • Cori Widen Cori Widen on Jun 12, 2017

    It definitely give more counter space. As someone who is pretty short, that has never been an option for me!

  • Nati Nati on Apr 02, 2021

    My mom was boiling something and she started something on the microwave, that started a fire right away inside the microwave , most likely the vapor from what she was cooking in the oven. Thank God she did not open the microwave, since the oxygen would had made the fire bigger. She turned off the break an it took an hour for the fire to stop. Hope someone finds this helpful. Thanks

  • Deb K Deb K on Apr 02, 2021

    Hi Kitty, I put one above my range because it saves counterspace and because of that I was able to get a bigger microwave, which would not have fit in my kitchen if I had to put it on the counter. I have never had a problem using the range and the microwave at the same time. And I have never burned myself. I really love the set up.

  • 17335038 17335038 on Apr 15, 2021

    Many microwaves are much larger appliances now than they were decades ago. Although as William noted above, they are still commonly used for only reheating rather than cooking entire meals, as others have noted, builders took to mounting the microwave about the stove to gain countertop space.

    Somehow this design element (in North America) has stuck around for a long time, likely since it is easy to just slap them up over the stove. Thank goodness that designers are finally realizing that this location is not always the most accessible, or the safest, and have begun installing the microwave lower down, in the side of an island, or on an open shelf in the lower cabinet bank.