Combination microwave ovens allow for more diverse use than can be done with a typical microwave. There are many tasks that can be performed beyond simply heating and defrosting foods. However, this is only a good appliance for purchase if an individual feels that they would use the added functions. If a microwave alone can meet every daily need, a combination oven may be an unnecessary expense.
There are a variety of combination microwave ovens and customers can select models with the specific features that they want. For some individuals, the included safety features will be very important in the selection process. For others, wattage may be a key factor. Others still may focus on the smaller counter top models and find the option of a larger built-in version unnecessary.
For those with small children, an appliance including a child lock is an ideal choice. By activating the child lock, all other controls can be deactivated. This prevents misuse or tampering with the oven by young children, and can prevent injuries and damage from occurring. Usually, activation of this feature can be done with the simple pressing of a few buttons.
Additional safety features include built in timers. When the timer runs out the microwave oven automatically stops cooking food and turns off. This prevents food from burning, boiling over, or eventually exploding. Any of these can become a fire hazard.
Wattage levels affect efficiency. The higher the wattage the faster the cooking process will be. Different appliances can have wattage levels varying from six hundred to twelve hundred watts. Eight hundred watts or above is recommended, as lower wattage may result in unevenly cooked food. This is important because improperly cooked food can have negative impacts on health.
The size of an appliance can also influence purchasing decisions. Counter top models are easy to fit into the kitchen and can readily be plugged in and used. For larger, built in models, professionals are needed for installations. However, these typically have more power and added features. They also allow for more counter top space.
Another consideration that affects the size of the appliance is the size of the family that will be using it. For smaller families, a compact or medium sized device may be adequate. However, larger meals will take more power to heat. Therefore, a larger model will most likely be necessary.
In addition to all of these considerations, there are a wide variety of bonus features to choose from. An example is sensor directed cooking that works by measuring humidity levels in food. Some offer specific pre-programmed buttons. Pressing one of these buttons tells the microwave what you are cooking and it adjusts its settings for that food. Some offer buttons that easily adjust the power level and quickly add minutes to the cooking time. Certain models can both brown or crisp food as well.
There are many variations in these combination microwave ovens. They vary in safety, efficiency, size and additions. Different customers may want specific elements to be included with their purchase. Decisions often depend on the types and size of food cooked and if the family includes small children. The ease of use is also an important factor as well.