On a Budget? You Can Still Have an Over the Range Microwave!
When I was young (and I’m showing my age here) microwaves were something of a luxury. When our family finally did get one, I have to say there were constant fights over whose turn it was to make the popcorn!
Back then, an oven like this was also only really available for the countertop however, as we all know manufacturers are quick to use technology to their advantage (and ours), and these days it’s possible to buy over-the-range microwaves.
These, as you probably know are an excellent way to save space in your kitchen but at the same-time have the convenience of microwave cooking so I couldn’t really leave this type out. The model you’re going to learn about in this review is the Sharp R-1406 950-Watt Over-the-Range Microwave which is about 1.4 cubic feet in size.
What made me decide to include this unit on my website wasn’t all the “bells and whistles” you can get with many microwave ovens, but the fact that this is one of the only brands I have come across to suit most budgets. However, I know it’s not all about money so just for you I’ve detailed what I’ve found.
Design and Installation
On first sight, what struck me about this over-the-range microwave is how streamline it is. For a start, you don’t have a handle that sticks out. Instead you just make use of the push button which helps from a cleaning point of view and just, well, looks a lot nicer.
You can get this model in both black and white so it will fit with both neutral and bold color schemes in the kitchen. Plus, it comes with the range light bulbs already installed which I think is a great little touch! The control panel sits to the right of the door and the buttons are auto touch which makes it very easy to use.
Installation, as recommended in the manual should be done by two people however it’s not impossible with one. Just make sure you’re pretty strong because this microwave is heavy! If you’re worried about being able to install this unit without calling in the professionals, you shouldn’t because the manual is very well written, concise and easy to understand.
Now, if you’re expecting this over-the-range microwave to do more than most this isn’t the model for you. On the control panel you have a 0-9 keypad and the following one touch buttons: Popcorn (one of the most important for me)! Reheat, cook, defrost and there are 10 different levels of power.
Speaking of power, this unit is (as mentioned in the name) 950 watts but I have heard very favorable reviews about just how powerful it is if you use the correct amount of food or drinks. I’ve also heard it’s brilliant on defrost in that it will actually defrost and not cook! This happens to be one of the reasons I would have considered a new microwave even if mine hadn’t broken down.
The fan with this microwave can be a little loud if you happen to have a quiet household, and it only has one setting. If you’re installing an over-the-range model of the first time, you will need a cabinet, and it goes without saying that if you’re replacing one it’s highly important to check the dimensions.
It is worth noting the vent does have three options: Vertical, horizontal and re-circulating. Oh, and of course you get a turntable which can be removed if you want to place large dishes inside.
All in all, this microwave is one of the best budget over-the-range models I have come across. If you take a look at the price on Amazon, you’ll quickly realize it costs a fraction of some of the bigger name brands out there.
OK, it won’t do away with the need for a conventional oven, but at least it has the good manners to display a message saying “enjoy” when you’re popcorn is ready!