It’s hard to imagine a kitchen without a microwave, but where should you put it? When it comes to microwave storage, you generally have two main options. The counter is a popular choice, but if you don’t have much space, it can take up precious counter room. If you opt for a built-in microwave, you lose cabinet space. The key is to figure out which option works best for your particular kitchen and needs. After all, a microwave’s just too convenient not to have.
Countertop Microwave Storage
The countertop option is popular for several reasons. First, if your microwave breaks, it’s easy to slide off the counter and replace it with a new one. Typically, with built-in storage, the microwave is up higher, making it more difficult to remove. Plus, it may be attached, requiring tools to remove it.
Another benefit is you can change the size of your microwave. Built-in microwave storage leaves you limited on size. You can either stay with the same size or go smaller. If you go smaller, you leave gaps that collect dust. If your microwave is on your counter, you can change the size at any time. Of course, you have to have enough counter space for a larger microwave.
Built-In Microwave Storage
As great as countertop storage might sound, there are benefits to a built-in microwave. The most obvious is you don’t have a large appliance just sitting on your counter. You get more room for prep. For smaller kitchens, more counter space is always a blessing. Plus, this leaves more room for other appliances, like the much-needed coffee maker.
Another benefit is your microwave tends to blend in more with your kitchen. Since it’s built-in, it looks like a part of your cabinets versus just a large appliance sitting on your counter. This gives your kitchen a more organized look and feel.
What you might not realize is you’re not limited to built-in storage just above your oven range. In fact, there are several great microwave storage options if you want to go with the built-in route.
Built-In Storage Options
An option you might not know about is microwave drawers. While stock drawers are available, it’s usually better to go with a customer microwave drawer to better fit your kitchen and microwave. Instead of sitting above your oven, you can have your microwave slide into a custom drawer, out of the way. It’s convenient and keeps your microwave off the counter.
If you have a thick wall or one that’s against a closet or garage, you can create a recessed area in the wall for the microwave. This ensures you’re not giving up as much cabinet space and keeps your microwave-safe in a custom area.
Don’t forget about your kitchen island. If you have an island, it’s perfect for microwave storage. This is ideal if you have kids using the microwave. They can reach it easier. Plus, by putting the microwave in your island, you won’t have hot plates sliding out near your face.
Instead of just building around your microwave, build a custom shelf just for the microwave. You have two options. You can build an open-style cabinet for your microwave to slide in. This prevents the need to physically attached the microwave to anything, making it easier to replace when needed. You can also add a secure shelf in an unused corner to create a special microwave area that’s out of the way and still looks neat and tidy.
Finally, you can have a custom cupboard built with vents. Remember, your microwave always needs to vent to avoid overheating. In addition to extra storage, your microwave will be tucked out of sight completely. The closed doors also keep kids who aren’t quite ready to use the microwave yet safe. You can add a lock to keep them out. To use it, just open the doors and use the microwave as usual.
Want a custom built-in solution for your microwave storage? Contact us today to find out how we can help.
Image: Naomi Hébert