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Microwaves are indispensable conveniences in most kitchens. However, traditional models can take up valuable countertop real estate. Also, there are some capabilities you wish a microwave could have so you don’t have to fire up your oven. Thanks to Sharp’s invention of the microwave drawer, these drawbacks are elegantly resolved. While many brands carry microwave drawers, every unit on the market is manufactured by Sharp, and they’ve saved the best features for themselves. Let’s examine the SMD2480CS model to understand why you should buy a Sharp microwave drawer.
Sharp Microwave Drawer Installation
When the microwave drawer first hit the market 20 years ago, its reception was a mixed bag of curiosity and reluctance. Some lauded the forward-thinking design it brought to the kitchen. Others were averse to possibly having to remodel their existing cabinetry. Taking these concerns into consideration, Sharp engineered the SMD2480CS to fit in four locations in easy reach to your food preparation area. You can install your microwave drawer in a kitchen island, in a peninsula, under a counter, and even underneath your Sharp wall oven.*
*30-inch trim kit required to match Sharp wall oven width sold separately.
Sharp Microwave Drawer Construction
No matter your kitchen’s aesthetic, this model’s low-profile design makes it unobtrusive, regardless of where you need it. Edge-to-edge black glass and stainless steel contains 1.2 cu ft of drawer space. The space is tall enough for several 20 oz. beverage cups and voluminous enough for a four qt. casserole dish. The interior is lined with a circle grid floor pattern that’s both stylish and functional as it efficiently diffuses its bright LED lighting. That way, the contents of the drawer are clearly illuminated without being garish.
This unit is activated by way of a concealed LCD control panel which we’ll examine in greater detail later. You might be wondering how to discern if the microwave drawer is active if the control panel is out of sight. When the unit is in operation, an LED light on its top front will glow blue. This light will only turn off when the drawer is fully open, control lock is on, or if the unit is fully deactivated. While your items cook, built-in airflow control releases hot air via vents at the bottom front of the drawer. This design is what makes this model’s cabinet flush mounting possible.
This microwave drawer is operated using a digital LCD control panel that retracts and remains hidden until you need it. Lightly push the panel and it will open at a 45-degree angle for perfect sightlines. From here, 11 power levels are available depending on your cooking needs. The control panel is backlit and will dim if unused for three minutes. This Standby Mode is meant to conserve energy, and will return to maximum brightness once the control panel is touched or the door is opened or closed.
Not everyone is experienced enough to go off intuition when determining which power setting is best for which scenario. If you are uncertain, this model has a multitude of pre-set modes. Do you need to defrost steaks, a roast, a casserole, or other foods without accidentally cooking them? Use one of six defrost settings. Melt or warm chocolate, ice cream, maple syrup, and more with six melt/soften/warm settings. With Sensor Cook, you can quickly and fully cook foods that might take 30 – 60 minutes in a traditional oven such as vegetables, ground meat, or a baked potato. A semi-conducting sensor* detects moisture and humidity emitted by your food as it heats. This causes the microwave to adjust power levels and cooking times so your food comes out flawlessly every time.
*Exterior of cooking container and interior of microwave drawer must be dry for accurate sensor readings.
Easy Wave Open/Easy Touch Close
This model comes equipped with an Easy Wave Open feature. With a simple up and down wave of your hand near a motion sensor at the front of the unit, the microwave drawer glides open to its full length. This is useful when you can’t turn your full attention to manually open the microwave. After placing or removing your comestibles, Easy Touch Close allows you to close the drawer with a gentle nudge. Gliding in and out is so smooth, messy spills from the sudden movement of liquids are not a cause for concern. The control panel can disable these features to engage manual operation.
A common concern most have with motion-sensing features is unintentional activation. No one wants to be wary of how close to the microwave drawer they are every time they walk through the kitchen. Thanks to the Control Lock function, you can suspend the automatic drawer system and all other buttons until the next time you’re ready to use it. Convenience isn’t the only reason for the Control Lock. It also serves as a safety feature, preventing children from opening the drawer and playing with the controls.
It’s no surprise Sharp has some of the best microwave drawers on the market considering they invented them. The same minds that conceived the technology are, understandably, the ones ideally suited to utilize it to its fullest potential. That’s why you should buy a Sharp microwave drawer.