Can You Put a Microwave on a Metal Shelf?

A common tale you may have heard about microwaves is that metals and microwaves are not good friends. In other words, both don’t get along so well.

What’s the reason why? There’s a claim that when you place metals in the microwave, it could repel the electrons of the heating device, causing a spark. 

Now that sounds scary! But what should you do if the metal shelf is the only available space to store the microwave. Should you then leave the microwave on the ground? That’s not ideal.

On the other hand, can you put a microwave on a metal shelf? If this is the question running through your mind, continue reading to get information to make the right decision.  

Can a Microwave Be on a Metal Shelf?

Yes, it can. Should you be worried? No! There’s no need for you to worry. It is completely safe to keep a microwave on a metal shelf.

There’s no way the metal would repeal the electrons produced by the microwave. If you were sticking the metal in the microwave, then it’s an entirely different case. 

But now, you only have plans to place the microwave on a metal shelf. Electrons in the interior of the microwave do not escape to the exterior. 

So, there’s no need to worry about spark, as there’s no way it would ever happen. By the way, manufacturers design their microwaves to trap the electrons inside when in use. 

Therefore, if the only space you have in your kitchen to keep your microwave is a metal shelf, go ahead and use it. 

Nevertheless, you have to be careful if you plan to leave a microwave on a metal surface. Ensure the shelf is sturdy enough to support the weight of the heating device. 

If the metal shelf isn’t sturdy, then it’s not safe. It would be dangerous if the microwave falls on the ground mistakenly. So, check properly and ensure the heating device is well-secured on the shelf. 

How Does the Metal Work With a Microwave?

If the metal container you are putting inside the microwave is oven-safe, you have no reason to worry. But it is not microwave oven safe, or you have no means of verifying if it is, then you should feel a bit worried. 

But the question is, would the microwave explode or get damaged when you place a metal that’s not oven-safe in it? 

Well, contrary to popular assumptions, it won’t explode. But that doesn’t mean non-oven safe metal containers are an ideal option to place in a microwave. They’re not in any way. 

But saying the microwave will catch fire is not a logical conclusion on the matter. Why? The oven won’t catch fire just like that or explode because you placed metal in it. 

We all know that using a metal container in the microwave is never the best option. But that doesn’t mean it would explode like a bomb. What might happen is this. 

If it’s a smooth metal bowl, the microwave won’t warm the food up the way it should. Why? The heat would be unable to penetrate the container to get to the food. 

When this happens, you’ll notice an inducement of electric current in the bowl. But does this have any consequences? No, it doesn’t since it’s a smooth metal bowl.

If it’s a metal bowl with jagged points or edges, there might be consequences. When the induction of current happens, arching is possible, and this might cause a spark

If there’s something combustible in the microwave, you can expect the spark to kick-start a fire. And this isn’t a good thing. 

However, avoid putting it in the microwave, whether it’s a smooth or jagged edge metal bowl. 

What are the best containers to place in the microwave oven? The first option should be glass. You may also consider polypropylene and polyethylene, as they are amazing microwave-safe materials. 

Most people are fond of storing their old yogurt and margarine contains. There’s nothing wrong with that. But please, ensure you don’t place them in the microwave oven. They’re not appropriate for the heating device. 

How To Safely Put a Microwave on a Metal Shelf?

We have it is possible to put a microwave on a metal shelf. Nevertheless, you have to exercise caution when doing so.

Here’s how to safely place a microwave oven on a metal shelf to extend the lifespan of your heating device and ensure no one gets hurt in your home

Tip 1: Consider the type of electrical socket nearby

The first thing you need to attend to is the wire. You have to plug it into the electrical socket. Otherwise, it won’t work. Isn’t that so?

So, the microwave’s wire is the first feature on the device that you may touch after unboxing the appliance. 

Now, check the wire the microwave has. You’ll discover that it’s a three-prong plug. Other heavy appliances that have such plugs are refrigerators and air conditions. 

The three-prong plug helps to ensure current is safely supplied to the appliance. So, if the only wall socket close to where you want to mount the device on the metal shelf is two-prong, you have to change it to a three-prong electrical socket. 

Tip 2: Protect the wire against electrocution

We’re still on the wire. And this time, we have to discuss the need to prevent the possibility of getting electrocuted when the microwave is on a metal shelf.

Metal is a good conductor of electricity. That means if any live wire touches the metal shelf, anyone that makes contact with the shelf would be electrocuted. 

It doesn’t matter if you touch the far end of the shelf. You could still get electrocuted. 

So, if you want to place the microwave on a metal shelf, ensure the insulation around the current-carrying wires isn’t exposed or broken in any area.

You need to check the wire from time to time to ensure there’s no breakage or exposed portion on the rubber insulator around the wire. And get the wire away from the metal shelf as far as possible. Do not leave any stone unturned. 

Tip 3: Give the microwave adequate ventilation

If you squeezed your microwave into a tiny space because that’s the only option you have, you’re asking for trouble. Chances are the appliance won’t last long, as expected. 

So, ensure adequate ventilation around your microwave oven to enable heat to escape from the appliance with ease. 

Just ensure there is space all around the appliance. That is, on all four sides. 

Tip 4: Find out what the manufacturer wants

Your plan might be to keep the microwave on a metal shelf, but that might not be what the manufacturer wants. 

The microwave may state that a metal shelf should be avoided. If that’s the case with your microwave, then respect the manufacturer’s instructions.

Can You Put a Microwave on a Glass Table?

Yes, you can. That’s the straightforward answer. But that’s not all you need to know. 

Before you place your microwave oven on the glass table, have it checked properly. Ensure there’s no crack anywhere on the glass table. If there is, avoid placing your microwave on it. 

When we say anywhere, ensure the pressure points on the glass table don’t have any crack. 

Again, check the exhaust of the heating device and ensure nothing is blocking it. 

Can You Put a Microwave on a Wire Shelf?

Yes, you can place the microwave or even your toaster oven on a wire shelf. Just ensure the shelf is sturdy enough to support the weight of the microwave. 

If you don’t have adequate space, a wire shelf is suitable to place your microwave. 

Alternative Places To Put Your Microwave Oven

Whether your kitchen is spacious or not, you can always find a place to store small appliances like your microwave or toaster oven

But when choosing a place to mount your microwave, keep in mind that you need to plug it into the electricity supply. So, ensure a three-prong plug is close to the microwave because this device usually boasts a shorter wire. 

When looking for a place to keep your microwave, here are alternative places to consider. 

1. Appliance wall

This was common in the 1960s and 1970s. But it is usually popular in high-end kitchens. An appliance wall will be a good option if you have the cash to spend on wiring and cabinetry. 

2. Use your pantry

Keeping the microwave in the pantry is a wise idea for those who don’t want to compromise the available space on the counter. But this method is a smart choice for those who don’t use their microwave often. 

3. Tuck in your kitchen island

This is a popular feature in the kitchen. It provides a surface to prepare and eat meals in the kitchen.

The island is a freestanding counter usually mounted in the middle of the kitchen. It’s a great alternative place to hide your microwave without making it difficult to reach. 

4. Place under the counter

You can place the microwave under the counter. It is a great spot to keep the heating device, whether the counter has a drawer or not. 


Can you put a microwave on a metal shelf? The answer is yes. Will it explode like a bomb, as claimed? No, it won’t. But if there’s a combustible in the microwave, it could start a fire. 

If you place a smooth metal bowl in the microwave, the heat won’t penetrate the metal to warm up the food. 

The best option is to use microwave-safe bowls. Avoid old yogurt and margarine containers. Avoid any container or bowl that isn’t microwave oven safe.

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