Installing an Over-the-Range Microwave


Over-the-range microwaves are conveniently placed and do double duty as range vents. You need a microwave designed especially for the job, as well as a vent to carry away exhaust fumes from the stove. The vent is built into the wall and is easiest to install when you're building or remodeling the kitchen. But if you're good at drywall repair, you can install one in a finished kitchen. You also need a cabinet the microwave hangs from. The cabinet not only provides support but it also contains the wiring for the microwave and may contain part of the venting.


About 2 hours to hang the microwave from the wall and cabinet; longer if venting and wiring is required

Screwdriver, tape measure, stud finder, drywall saw, wire cutters, needle-nose pliers, strippers

Measuring and finding framing, wiring if outlet needed, ability to install vents, if required

Move range, if it's in the way; install microwave cabinet.

Over-the-range microwave; cable; outlet boxes; receptacle; cover, if new outlet needed; vent, if needed

Step 1

Install the vent and cover it with drywall. Cut through the drywall with a drywall saw to access the vent.

Step 2

Over-the-range microwaves hang from a cabinet. Install an outlet for the microwave inside the cabinet.

Step 3

The microwave can vent through the wall or the roof. On some microwaves you'll adjust the vent to channel the air in the right direction. On others, including this one, you'll position the fan to channel the air.

Step 4

A mounting plate attached to the wall and bolts through the bottom of the cabinet into the top of the microwave support the unit.

Step 5

Many microwaves come with a template for mounting. Tape the template to the wall, drill where shown, then remove the template. If there is no template, follow the manufacturer's directions to lay out the mounting holes.

Step 6

Attach the mounting plate to the wall. The exact method depends on where the studs fall and on the design of the plate. You need to attach to at least one stud but can probably use toggle bolts elsewhere. Follow the manufacturer's directions.

Step 7

Make sure the door is latched and have someone help you hang the microwave on the mounting plate.

Step 8

Bolt the microwave to the cabinet following the manufacturer's directions and plug it in.

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