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What Are the Pros and Cons of a Used Microwave?

By K. K. Lowen
Updated May 16, 2024
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Shopping for a used microwave may have many advantages and disadvantages. Some used microwaves function very well and may be inexpensive when compared to the price of a new appliance. Other secondhand microwaves may not function properly.

For many people, the greatest advantage of purchasing a used microwave is the price. New microwaves are sometimes inexpensive, but they often have high price tags. For people who do not have a large amount of money to spend, it may preferable to buy a used microwave.

A disadvantage of obtaining a used microwave is that the seller may try to sell a broken or worn out item. It is important to see how well the microwave works before buying it. Some frequently used older models may offer weakened or uneven heating, and others may not work at all.

Although it may not be terribly difficult to find a good used microwave, it is best to thoroughly inspect the item before purchasing it. Many people sell perfectly good microwaves at low prices. Some people have upgraded to a new model of microwave and want to get rid of their old appliance, while other people may need to sell their microwave because they intend to move. It may be a good choice to purchase the microwave if it has a fair price, looks clean, and operates well during a demonstration.

Sometimes people sell microwaves that are very old, which can be a disadvantage for some buyers. Old models sometimes lack features that many people want, such as a digital display and key pad. Some used microwaves may not have a turntable inside, which many people want because it helps to evenly heat foods. Many older microwaves do not work as well as they once did because of heavy use over an extended period of time. They may show external wear and tear from long-term use as well.

Buying a used microwave may be the most eco-friendly option, which is a major advantage for some people. Filling up landfills with used appliances is bad for the environment. Many people prefer to buy used appliances because if the owner no longer uses an item and cannot sell it, the appliance likely will be thrown away.

It is possible to repair a broken used microwave, but repairs may be a disadvantage for buyers unless they can repair the appliances themselves. Access to inexpensive replacement parts is an important factor when considering the purchase of a broken microwave as well. It is also possible to purchase a restored or rebuilt microwave, but they may cost as much as a new appliance.

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Discussion Comments

By SteamLouis — On Nov 24, 2013

Some used microwaves for sale still have a guarantee, it's usually for one or two years after purchase. So the microwave could be fixed by the company for free and the microwave will end up costing less.

By candyquilt — On Nov 24, 2013

@burcidi-- If something is so broken that there is no hope for fixing it, then obviously, it's not worth using. But many people sell used microwaves and some of the appliances are barely used and very clean. So it's a matter of looking around for the best used microwave.

If we all buy new appliances just because we don't want to clean a used appliance, it will be very bad for the environment. I bought a used microwave oven because I don't want to add another appliance to landfills. That's where every unpurchased, used microwave lands up.

By burcidi — On Nov 24, 2013

Aside from the fact that used microwaves for sale can turn out to be broken, I think the major downside of used microwaves is that they have to be thoroughly cleaned.

Unfortunately, not everyone uses microwaves properly. They get food to splatter inside the microwave by setting it for too long and not watching it. And then they don't wipe the inside of the microwave and small food particles dry up and stick.

I had a used microwave once and it took me all day to clean it. I was really disgusted by the end of it. I also kept the door open for a few days before using it to get all the old food smells out of the appliance. I only used it for a few months and then ended up getting a brand new one.

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