Microwaves! The super appliance in our home for over decades now. For some, it’s the essential and convenient way to bake and roast, for some to warm up foods, and for some, just a morning coffee maker.
No matter how you use it, they give the perfect output every time. And you get a fully satisfied dish or drink ready in minutes. It even comes with smart technologies that let you operate it via your smartphone. But that’s for some other time.
The thing about microwaves is, that you cannot use everything in them. Take paper for instance, it doesn’t react well inside the microwave and even catches fire. Metal? They spark. Why does metal spark in a microwave anyway?
This is because of how microwaves work by transferring electromagnetic energy, microwaves create heat. And with metal, the energy gets deflected causing a spark. Unclear? We are going to talk more about it.
Metal Sparks In Microwave | Explained
If you don’t know by now how microwaves work, let’s do a crash course. Microwave works by transferring magnetron through a tube and creating electromagnetic energy. This vibrates the water, fat, and sugar molecules inside the food. Which creates energy, or heat. This is how foods get cooked or heated up.
So, if you place a metal inside a microwave, the microwave starts to do its thing. Creating electromagnetic energy around it, it vibrates the metal electrons. But as far as metal goes, the reflects some of those energy to its source. Hence there is a spark between both electrons. And you can see the metal spark inside the microwave.
This is why it is never suggested to place metal inside a microwave. It will not only put up a great show of sparks like fireworks but also might damage the microwave. Even worse, it will catch fire and cause an explosion. Sometimes if the metal is thin enough, it will melt. Which nobody wants to experience.
It will also damage the interior of your microwave if there isn’t a fire. And you risk yourself using the appliances again. This goes for any form of metal, stainless steel, bronze, copper, or aluminum. Everything. So better to use microwave-safe cookware inside the microwave, and remove any metal utensils before placing them inside.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why does Aluminium spark in the microwave?
Aluminum sparks in the microwave due to the constant vibration and interaction with the electromagnetic energy from the microwave and the aluminum electrons. It may cause the aluminum to melt or catch fire. This is why it is suggested never to place anything metal inside the microwave.
Is it bad if your microwave sparks?
Yes. If your microwave sparks, it means there is internal damage in the microwave tube or the interior. Turn it off and get it checked by a professional.
There is very little science behind microwaves sparking when they come close to metal. It’s simple. But if you think about the consequences, there is a whole lot to explain to the fire department. Or to your insurance. So be safe, and never put metal inside your microwave.