What is an inverter microwave and is it worth it? | CHOICE

Need to know

  • The difference between inverter and normal microwaves is in the way power is delivered
  • Inverter microwaves provide a constant stream of power for the entire cooking time to avoid overheating
  • Understanding the importance of power levels and how to use a microwave properly will go a long way towards getting great results

Microwaves tend to be a staple token in any kitchen – you can use them to reheat leftovers, defrost kernel or fudge veggies and rice. When it comes to shopping for one, there are normal conventional microwaves and then there are inverter microwaves that claim superior performance. But what ‘s the difference between the two and do inverter microwaves actually perform better ? We ‘ve put many microwaves to the test in our labs, with and without inverter technology, to find out .
On this page :

How does an inverter microwave work?

An inverter microwave works by heating, reheating or defrosting food at a constant exponent degree for the duration of the cooking time.

The aim of inverter engineering is to provide a control and effective office supply operating continuously at the lapp power to avoid overheating, personnel casualty of season and destroying food structure .
Read more: 10 comfortable microwave oven hacks

What is the difference between an inverter and a normal microwave?

The chief difference between inverter and conventional microwaves is in the way exponent is supplied. In a conventional microwave office is supplied through a transformer, which turns the baron on and off ( you ‘ll normally hear the microwave carving in and out ), giving the food a casual to distribute heating system. For model, if you set the microwave to deliver 50 % exponent, it will actually go through cycles of producing 100 % baron followed by a period of no exponent to achieve the 50 % .

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On the other pass, in an inverter microwave world power is supplied through an inverter circuit to supply a regular and constant total of power throughout the cook meter without cutting in and out. so if you select 50 % world power, the microwave will deliver 50 % power throughout.
not all foods should be blasted with maximum ability in a microwave. Foods with high amounts of carbohydrate and fat, ampere well as foods medium to heat like dairy, chocolate and kernel ( when defrosting ) require lower ability levels to efficaciously heat and reheat evenly .
even if you ‘re using a lower power level, heating finespun foods in a criterion microwave can cause areas to overheat ( particularly around the edges ) during periods of high power. Checking the manufacturer ‘s instructions and recommendations will go a hanker manner towards getting power levels veracious for different foods .

Melting chocolate test

In our latest test of microwaves we put this to the trial by melting cocoa – a very heat sensitive, senior high school fat, high boodle food. All the inverter models in the test had a melt/soften affair, as did one of the non-inverter models. In this case, all the inverter microwaves passed the test, melting the chocolate absolutely. One inverter model was able to do the job with no drug user interaction any. The other inverters all beeped part way through to prompt the exploiter to check and stir. The convention microwave failed the test – it did n’t beep to prompt check and rousing and the result was unserviceable chocolate. In this case the inverter ( teamed with car cook functionality ) microwaves performed better than the conventional microwave .
Infographic showing the difference between inverter and conventional microwaves

Infographic : Inverter microwaves provide a constant stream of power for the integral cook time to avoid overheat .

What is the benefit of an inverter microwave?

There are many claims regarding the superiority of inverter technology, all of which by and large praise the steady stream of baron pitch. Panasonic says that inverter technology “ delivers a seamless current of cooking office – even at lower settings – for preciseness cooking that preserves the relish and texture of your favorite foods ”.

According to LG, “ Inverter technology enables more precise temperature command to help defrost foods and avoid overcook and dissolve areas. ”
Some of the top do models in our microwaves review have inverter engineering, however, there are some recommend conventional microwaves that perform precisely equally well. We believe there are more factors to consider when choosing a microwave than equitable inverter functionality .
Read more: How we test microwaves

The importance of power levels when using a microwave

We ‘ve all done the old magic trick of pressing the Start ‘Add 30 seconds ‘ release on our microwaves, thinking that pressing the button a match of times is the quickest direction to reheat a meal. While this may be the character, it actually does n’t leave you with a great consequence. When you reheat meals this way your microwave is using its highest office level for the duration of the time selected. This results in areas of the meal that are very hot and areas that are inactive cold and the indigence for you to manually stir or mix the food to achieve even heating. By blasting the food with utmost world power it ‘s not giving the microwave a chance to distribute heat evenly. This is specially true for firm foods like lasagna where you ca n’t stir the food during reheat .
rather, it ‘s best to use a lower might level ( if sensor reheat is n’t available ). It may take longer to reheat but you ‘ll get a better resultant role .
It ‘s a similar story when defrosting meat. The ability level is peculiarly important when defrosting – excessively high office will result in uneven thaw, with areas becoming warm or cooked and others staying freeze. The microwave should lone be operating at around 30 % ability for defrosting. If your microwave has a defrost serve, use it .
Read more: How to buy the best microwave

Is an inverter microwave worth it?

In theory, the way inverter microwaves bring should mean they always perform better. But in our screen, this is n’t constantly the case and we believe there are early factors that make a commodity microwave .
You should look for a microwave with well-designed sensors, autocook functions and thoroughly visibility vitamin a well as ease of manipulation quite than just inverter functionality .
We find that most of the inverter microwaves we ‘ve tested besides have sensor cook functionality and broadly the combination of these two features works well in our test. The inverter microwaves we ‘ve tested range in price from $ 227 to $ 419 .
Microwaves are a crafty appliance to navigate and understand how to use by rights, particularly in terms of power and how to adjust it correctly. Based on this we ‘d suggest looking for a microwave that requires minimal interaction from the user and a well-designed inverter or detector microwave is an option worth considering .

Which brands offer inverter microwaves?

In our kitchen lab we ‘ve tested inverter microwaves from :

  • Breville
  • LG
  • Morphy Richards
  • Panasonic
  • Sharp

You can besides find inverter microwaves from early brands like Bosch and Smeg.

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