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Install & Replace

Can I replace a broken over the range ducted microwave by myself ?

I already have an over the range microwave so all wiring, ducting, etc. is installed.  I want to pick up a new over the range microwave and put it in myself.   Is there hard wiring to  deal with or just a plug to plug in?

Right now I have a Sharp 1.4 cu. ft over the rnage microwave that is broken.

I want to buy a Hotpoint 1.5 cu. ft  Model RVM 1535dmww and put that where the Sharp is now sitting.


Appreciate your input.  Would like to save the $ 99 install cost if its an easy install



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Posted 2011-01-04T08:12:11+0000  by T24 T24

Good Day T24 and Welcome to the Community!


Most DIYers would rate this repair a 6 out of 10 on a scale where 10 is most difficult. So you certainly can do it!

Be sure to read the manufacturer's instructions.


Turn off the breaker and be sure the power is off to your old microwave, make certain the new microwave electrical requirements match the breaker, check that the measurements of the new microwave match the available space and the "height above burner" requirements, and reverse the remainder of these instructions to remove the old microwave.


Now let's get started!


Typically manufacturers include a mounting bracket in your installation kit. When positioned and attached properly, this plate provides support to carry the weight of the microwave. The lower edge of the bracket has a turned-up edge (or tabs) and the microwave has matching receiver(s) that fit over the bracket's turned-up edge (or tabs) to support the weight.


A paper template is also included and is used to help locate a position on the wall so the bracket screws attach to the studs behind the sheetrock. When positioning the template, be certain to have a stud finder on-hand to mark the location of studs before marking your bracket screw holes and attaching the mounting bracket thru the wall to the studs.


These are two of the three most important steps to ensure that the weight of the microwave is supported ... so you are halfway to a warm meal in your new microwave. Onward to the last installation steps.


Once you are confident that the bracket is mounted into the studs and will support the weight, re-wire your new microwave. Follow the manufacturer's wiring instructions ... they will likely tell you to match wire colors (white to white, black to black, etc.) wire-nut the wires securely and make certain they are contained in an electrical box.


NOTE: In some areas, outlets are installed inside the cabinet and a plug is passed thru the bottom of the cabinet to plug into the outlet (but many, if not most are hard-wired w/out a plug).


The final step is to support the front end of the microwave. This is typically done with carriage style screws coming down through the cabinet which is above the microwave. Use the provided template or measure to locate the proper screw position and then pilot a hole through the bottom of the cabinet to match the location of these screws. These carriage style screws have washer heads that help spread the weight out over a larger area of the cabinet's bottom. If you desire, add a larger washer to spread the weight even more.


Now the heavy lifting! Enlist the help of a friend (I sometimes make wood supports when a friend is not available).


With the electrical connection secure inside the electrical box, lift the microwave and place the back end receivers onto the mounting bracket.


Attach your ducts to ensure proper venting (some microwaves allow room venting without attaching to ducts). Instructions will provide details about required tools and you may have to do this after you lift the microwave onto the wall bracket.


Then raise the front of the microwave up against the bottom of the cabinet and support the weight of the front with the carriage screws (usually one on each front corner) through the bottom of the cabinet into the top of the microwave.


I commonly use a drill to tighten the screws until they begin to get snug. At this point, I tighten one screw a few turns and then tighten the other a few turns to prevent "skewing" the appliance.


Once the new appliance is secure, level, and square ... you can turn the breaker back on and prepare your favorite microwave dish.


I have done this repair several times and it is not too difficult for most DIYers. This is, however, one of those repairs that places you in awkward positions while supporting a fair amount of weight, so be careful!


Send us some warm popcorn when you complete the project (a photo of the popcorn with you smiling will do).


Happy New Year!


Posted 2011-01-04T13:57:39+0000  by Pat_HD_ATL
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