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Why Are the Buttons on My Microwave Not Working?

John Turpin is our resident home service repair expert here at Service Direct. He’s got the knowledge and experience to help homeowners like you make sense of most home repair issues. And with Service Direct, we connect you with top-tier service professionals to help with any repairs needed.

Find Out Why You Can’t Press the Buttons on Your Microwave

The microwave is undoubtedly one of the most important appliances in the kitchen. This appliance has incredible usability, allowing you to cook food, heat dishes and water, and even bake cakes more easily. Unsurprisingly, a day can feel wrong when your microwave suddenly stops working properly.

One of the common problems that you may encounter is microwave buttons not working. There are various reasons why this can happen, such as power supply issues, door switch problems, control board failure, and more. This blog introduces you to common causes of buttons on microwaves not working and what to do to address the issue.

Microwave Buttons not working fix ideas
Check out the list below for the most common causes your microwave buttons aren’t working.

Common Reasons the Microwave Buttons Are Not Working

It can be frustrating if the buttons on your microwave are suddenly not working. They can prevent you from being able to use the appliance altogether, which can ruin your kitchen experience. It helps to understand why it can happen and what you can do to fix it, which will be explored below.

Power Supply Issues

Are your microwave buttons not working after cleaning? Or even when you didn’t clean them? First, you should check whether the appliance is properly plugged in and if the outlet is working. There’s no power if the outlet is dead, which is why the microwave buttons are not working.

Door Switch Problems

The door switch is an essential safety feature that ensures the microwave only operates when the door is properly closed. If the door isn’t completely shut or the door switch is worn out or faulty, the buttons may not work. You can test if this is the case with your microwave by opening and closing the door a few times to see if the buttons respond.

Control Panel Issues

Why does my microwave button not work? It might be due to an issue with the control panel. The control panel is the interface between you and the oven. It’s where you input the settings and adjust the cooking time, temperature, and other features. But if it’s damaged or unresponsive due to exposure to heat or moisture, it might not respond and prevent the buttons from working.

Microwave Buttons not working DIY
See our list of common repair tips for microwave buttons.

Control Board Failure

The control board is responsible for sending signals to the various parts of the microwave. If it fails, the buttons may stop working, and the microwave will malfunction. This issue can happen for multiple reasons, such as a power surge or other electrical problems. If the reason behind your microwave not working is the control board, you will need help from a professional to repair or replace it.

Malfunctioning Keypad

The keypad on your microwave is where you enter the cooking time and other settings. It’s an important feature that may become damaged or worn out over time due to prolonged use or exposure to moisture. If the keypad is malfunctioning, it must be repaired or replaced so the microwave functions properly again.

Faulty Membrane Switch

If the buttons on your microwave are not working, one of the possible culprits is the membrane switch. The membrane switch translates the pressed buttons into electronic signals that the microwave can understand. If it’s faulty, it’s given that the buttons won’t work because the microwave can’t understand the electronic signals.

Our resident home repair guru, John Turpin, has provided a list of common reasons why your microwave buttons aren’t responding, along with a variety of DIY solutions.

Loose or Damaged Wiring

Loose or damaged wiring can interrupt the electrical signals between the buttons and the control board. This prevents the buttons from working properly, so you can’t set the microwave however you want. The wiring can become loose or damaged due to various reasons, such as age or poor manufacturing quality.

Power Surge

A power surge is a sudden increase in voltage that can damage the microwave’s electronic components, including the control board. If a power surge occurs and damages the control board or other parts of the microwave, the buttons may stop working, or the appliance won’t work altogether.

Dirt and Grime Buildup

Over time, a microwave’s buttons and control panel can become dirty with grease due to food splatters and spills. The dirt and grime buildup on the buttons and control panel can cause them to stop working properly. This is because the dirt can block the electronic signals the buttons send to the control board.

Microwave buttons not working can happen due to various reasons, which are largely preventable and repairable. While it’s possible to repair this issue on your own, remember to proceed cautiously. If you don’t have experience fixing microwaves, leaving it to a professional technician may be best.

Microwave buttons not working repair ideas
Each of these solutions could fix your microwave button problems.

How Do You Fix Microwave Buttons Not Working?

1. Clean the Buttons

Start by cleaning the microwave. As mentioned, dirt and grime buildup can cause the microwave buttons not to work. It stands to reason it’s a great idea to clean the appliance first before doing any repair work. Use a soft, damp cloth to remove the buildup. Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive materials when cleaning your device.

2. Check the Door Switch

The next step is to check the door switch. Ensure that it isn’t worn out or faulty, which can prevent the buttons from working properly. Test if the door switch works properly by opening and closing the microwave door a few times to see if the buttons respond. If it doesn’t, the next step is to replace the door switch.

3. Reset the Microwave

If the door switch wasn’t the problem, you could try fixing the buttons by resetting the microwave. Resetting can resolve temporary issues by retuning the microwave’s internal circuitry and restoring its functionality.

4. Replace the Faulty Parts

If resetting doesn’t work, you will have to look at the different components of the appliance that could be the root cause of the problem. Consult the list mentioned above, which should also give you an idea of how to address the issue. In most cases, you will have to replace the faulty parts, such as the control board, the control panel, or the keypad.

5. Call in an Expert

If none of the methods mentioned worked, the best solution is to call a professional appliance repair technician. They have the expertise, skills, and tools to diagnose and repair microwave buttons not working, as well as plenty of other benefits.

Faulty Microwave FAQs

Can I repair my microwave buttons myself?

While you can do some basic repairs such as cleaning the buttons or resetting the microwave, it’s best to let a qualified technician handle more advanced repairs, like replacing the control panel or control board. Attempting to repair your microwave without proper knowledge or tools can be dangerous and cause further damage to the appliance.

How do I reset my microwave if the buttons are not working?

If the buttons on your microwave are not working, you can try resetting it by unplugging the device and plugging it back in after a few minutes. This can help reset the control board and fix temporary issues. If this doesn’t work, it’s a good idea to call a technician to diagnose and repair the underlying issues.

Can a power surge cause microwave buttons to stop working?

Yes. A power surge can cause microwave buttons to stop working by damaging the control board. If a power surge occurs, you should unplug the appliance and wait a few minutes to plug it back in. This will reset the control board and fix any temporary issues. If this doesn’t work, call a qualified repair technician for help.

Is it better to repair or replace a microwave with faulty buttons?

If your microwave is relatively new and the cost of repairing the buttons is not too high, it may be worth repairing the appliance. But if the microwave is old, the repair cost is high, or the buttons keep malfunctioning, it may be more cost-effective to replace the microwave with a brand-new device.

Can a faulty door switch cause the microwave buttons to stop working?

Yes. A faulty door switch can cause the microwave buttons to stop working. The door switch is an important safety feature preventing the microwave from operating when the door is open. If the door switch is faulty, it can prevent the appliance from functioning properly, including the buttons.

Hire a Local Appliance Repair Expert

The methods above are effective DIY tips to investigate, diagnose, and fix your faulty microwave. But if you need professional help, then don’t hesitate to contact a local appliance repair contractor using the phone number or form on this page.

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