Difference between Over the Range Microwave & Built In Microwave

Microwaves are almost a staple of every American kitchen. It is so easy and so fast, that all of us love it. There are many different types of microwaves, designed to cater to specific needs. Now, we are going to look out Built-In Microwave vs Over the Range.

Built-in Microwave vs Over the Range

Microwaves make our life easier by providing an option for quick and convenient cooking. The multiple cooking modes provide us with so much versatility and a variety of cooking options. There is a huge array of microwave ovens available in the market that every time we want to buy a new one, we are so overwhelmed with choices.

Built-In Microwave vs Over the Range image
Built-In Microwave vs Over the Range image

This guide is an attempt to help you in making some smart choices while choosing a microwave oven, that will suit your needs best.

Key factors to consider

If you are planning to buy a new microwave oven, you need to consider the available space in your kitchen, cooking needs, and the design.

One of the major factors to consider is where will be the placement of your microwave. Especially if you are remodeling an existing kitchen, you should consider if you would like to place it on the kitchen counter-top or mount it on a cupboard or wall. Understanding the pros and cons of both types will help you in choosing the right appliance for your needs.

What to consider when buying a microwave?

Venting needs

If you already have a range hood installed, you can replace it with an over the range microwave to save space. So before you buy a microwave, you should also check if you need to replace your range hood.

Countertop space

Check for available countertop space in your kitchen. If you have ample space in your kitchen, then a countertop might be an easy fit. However most of us have limited counter space and it is only wise to go for a built-in or over the range types, even though they are a little expensive.

Cooking style

Before buying a microwave, you need to determine your cooking needs. If the microwave is totally integrated into your cooking flow, then you will likely benefit from over the range model. You can quickly defrost while cooking on your cooktop, rather than moving away from your cooking range to access the microwave.

Easy Clean

Some microwaves have a built-in feature to auto clean the interiors and deodorizing them. Some of them also have non-stick interiors to easily clean the splitters and stains. A simple wipe down can easily clean the surface.

Cooking options

Choose a microwave with multiple preset options. This can be highly useful, especially during busy mornings, saving some of your valuable time to set the timer. You need not keep checking the doneness of your food and cook hassle-free in your cooktop without worrying about your food getting spoilt.

Difference Between Over the Range and Built-In Microwave

Over the range, microwaves have dual features: microwave and ventilation. They are built above the cooktop and built into the cabinet design. The range hood above the microwave can either be vented outside or can re-circulate the air back into the kitchen.

This type of microwave oven combines the functionality of both a microwave as well as a range hood. If you are tired of a huge microwave taking up valuable countertop space, then an Over the Range Microwave will come in handy.

A built-in microwave, on the other hand, is also mounted on the way and is integrated with the cabinetry. However, it can be fixed anywhere within your kitchen, not necessarily above the cooking range.

While a built-in range also clears some valuable space on your kitchen countertop, you will have to fix a separate a range hood to exhaust fumes from your kitchen.

Built-In vs Over the Range Microwave

Built-in Microwave

Built-in Microwave image
  • You will have more counter space in the kitchen.
  • If you are shorter, then you might not be able to reach an over the range microwave. A built-in can be fixed a little away from the cooktop and is easily accessible.
  • Integration into cabinetry can improve the aesthetics of your kitchen.
  • You will have to fix a separate range hood in addition to your microwave.
  • Built-in microwaves are more expensive than traditional countertop microwaves.
  • They are very difficult to replace as they are integrated into the cabinetry.

Over the Range Microwave

Over the Range Microwave image
  • As with built-in types, over the range microwaves also provide additional countertop space for kitchen needs.
  • They have dual functionality as it combines microwave and ventilation needs.
  • There is no additional cost of a range hood and hence lesser expense.
  • For shorter people and kids, it would not be easily accessible.
  • Usually, the ventilation fans in over the range microwave have a lesser capacity of 300CFM, when compared to traditional range hoods which can reach up to 1000CFM.
  • They are also more expensive than traditional countertop microwaves and are difficult to replace.

Weighing your options

A good understanding of your cooking needs and kitchen space is essential in determining the type of microwave to choose. No matter which style you choose, you are sure to find plenty of options to buy. Before choosing the microwave, determine the design of your cabinetry, the capacity, and power expected out of the microwave and the people in your home who will access the microwave. Best way to choose would be looking at different displays in showrooms and then shortlisting one. Know more about Built-In Microwave vs Over the Range, by visiting www.bestovertherangemicrowave.reviews regularly.

4 thoughts on “Difference between Over the Range Microwave & Built In Microwave”

  1. I presently have to replace a built in.
    Must I replace it with another built in due to ventilation….or may I buy a countertop.
    What are my options ?..
    Must comply with my available space. Thx for your help.

  2. I just purchased the GE cafe 2.1 over the range microwave CVM721M2NS5 i was planning on installing it over my range. But now i would like to make it a built in in my cabinetry. Can i do this or does this cause any kind of hazard. Thnx so much

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *