Why Does Microwave Have Metal Rack? (What Science Says)

Do you remember, people used to advise us not to put metals inside a microwave? Well now, we have a whole new segment of microwaves that come with a metal rack! Isn’t that mind-blowing?

This guide discusses everything about the metal rack in a microwave. If you have recently bought one such microwave, you must give it a read.

Can You Microwave With A Metal Rack?

Yes, homeowners can microwave with metal rack inside. There are specific models of microwaves that come with metal racks. The rack is there to give more space to heat up or cook multiple items at the same time.

Why Does Microwave Have Metal Rack?

Why Does Microwave Have Metal Rack
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Old models of microwaves didn’t come with a metal rack. However, with technological advancements, the current models of microwaves contain a metal rack inside them that allows homeowners to make use of the extra space created inside the microwave and heat or cook multiple items at the same time.

The metal rack is also useful for grilling and defrosting chicken and other items. Below are some reasons that explain why a microwave has a metal rack.

Extra Space

The primary purpose of placing a metal rack inside a microwave is to create more space. When you place a metal rack in between, there’s an extra layer where you can place food items without overcrowding. 

Allows Even Distribution of Energy

Metal racks inside a microwave also facilitate uniform reheating and cooking. Because of their design, there is an even distribution of heat. The electrons and atoms present in the metal rack roam around freely, thereby heating and cooking the food properly.

In fact, a metal rack aids in conduction of dispersion of heat from the microwave oven. This ensures even heat distribution and proper cooking of food from all sides without any cold spots. 

Convenient Cooking

A metal shelf in a microwave is largely beneficial in restaurants and bakeries. The rack is mostly used to bake, roast, toast and grill.

Now that we have understood the purpose of placing a metal rack inside a microwave, let’s know more about it from this guide below.

How Can a Microwave Have a Metal Rack?

The metal rack present in the center of the microwave contains metals similar to the ones present in the cavity of the microwave oven.

The microwave metal shelf is designed and placed in such a manner that it doesn’t touch neither the walls nor the floor of the microwave, eliminating any warping or arcing that might have occurred otherwise.

Manufacturers use rubber or plastic clips to attach the metal rack to the sides of the oven. The metal rack is absolutely safe and there’s no risk of sparks or accidents if used properly.

Why Does The Metal Rack In A Microwave Not Spark?

A lot of times, you must have seen sparks inside a microwave the moment you place any metal item. Have you ever wondered why does the metal rack doesn’t spark, while everything else causes sparks? Read below to know why does the metal rack doesn’t spark:

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Good Quality Of The Rack

Metal racks that are provided by manufacturers are expensive and thick. The thicker the metal rack, the more space is available for electrons to roam around freely without causing sparks. These metal racks also has a smooth texture as well.

The Shape Of The Metal Rack

The metal rack provided by the manufacturer doesn’t have sharp ends. Tapered ends allow electrons to gather in one corner while moving and bouncing around, which creates a lot of sparks. With increasing electron accumulation, the heat increases and causes sparks. Since metal racks have round corners, the chances of sparks are reduced.

Mounting Design

Metal racks never touch the walls and sides of the microwave. The metal rack also has plastic hooks that keep it protected, eliminating any contact with the walls or sides. The moment it comes in contact, there will be sparks.

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How To Use Metal Rack In Microwave?

By now we have understood the benefits of using a microwave with a metal rack. Before using a microwave with a metal rack inside, you must be well aware of the safety tips and the proper ways of using a metal rack. Read the following tips mentioned below and stay informed.

Ensure Proper Installation

To prevent issues like sparking, it is very crucial for you to ensure proper installation of the metal rack with the help of plastic hooks within the microwave.

The metal rack isn’t supposed to touch the back or sides of your microwave. If you don’t place the rack properly and it gets touched with the metallic sides of the microwave, this may lead to sparks.

But you need not worry about this as the rack was created just so it can be placed easily on the plastic hook, so it’s not that difficult either.

Don’t Keep The Metal Rack Intact Unnecessarily

Users shouldn’t keep the rack when they don’t need it. In simple terms, if you don’t use the metal rack, just remove it from your microwave oven and store it in your kitchen cabinet.

Don’t Forget To Rotate Your Food

Dissimilar to the spinning tray located towards the bottom of your microwave, the metal rack in the microwave remains fixed at one place. So when you cook or reheat a meal in your microwave, you might have to rotate the food. If this step is missed, your food may not cook properly.

If you cook a pre-packaged meal, like a hot packet, you’ll find instructions mentioned on the food package itself. Follow the instructions to know whether there is any particular time that is recommended to turn the food.

Avoid Using A Browning Dish

As per GE Appliances, you shouldn’t use a browning dish on the metal rack of the microwave as by doing this, your rack may get damaged. As indicated by the earlier points, the microwave racks are designed very specifically and if the rack gets warped, there can be major accidents.

Avoid Popping Popcorn

Some models of microwaves advise users not to pop popcorn on the metal rack installed in the microwave oven. One major problem with popping popcorn is that with the expansion of the popcorn bag, the metal rack in your microwave may get pushed from its hooks. This could then lead to many issues like sparking.

Never Use The Microwave Without Food

If your microwave has a metal rack, you must avoid using it empty or when there is no food inside.

Use Microwave Proof Dishes

It is really important to use microwave-safe products. Only because you use the grilling rack, doesn’t mean that it is not necessary for you to follow the precautionary measures.

Therefore, only use microwave-safe plastic and microwave-safe ceramic containers and you’ll be on the right track.

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The Bottom Line

That’s all about metal racks in microwaves. Hope this guide is useful and informative. The next time you use a microwave with a metal rack in it, don’t forget to follow the safety tips mentioned above. Maintain safety and enjoy delicious meals!

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