Can You Run A Microwave With A Generator?

If you use the microwave oven frequently, running it with a generator might have come to your mind. You are not alone if you are unsure about running the microwave oven with a generator. This article is the best place to know the answer.

In case of a power outage, you can run a microwave oven with the generator after ensuring it meets the wattage requirement. If the wattage requirement of your microwave oven is 1000 watts, then you must connect the generator to 1500 watts to ensure safety. 

In this article, you will know how to calculate the wattage requirement of your microwave oven to install the generator with the specific requirement. You will also know the steps required to connect the microwave and the generator. So, keep reading.

Check out our list of top-handpicked products for all your electrical, appliance, and HVAC system needs to keep your home running smoothly.

This post includes some affiliate links.

Can you plug the microwave oven into the generator?

If you are using the microwave frequently and the power outage doesn’t want to stop you from using the microwave, you can safely plug the microwave into a generator.

There is nothing dangerous about connecting the microwave to a generator until you follow the safety precautions.

It is best to use gas-powered generators to run the microwave.

Before plugging the microwave with a generator, calculate the wattage required by your microwave.

Install a generator with an excellent wattage capacity to power the microwave during electricity shut off. 

It would be best to use the cord extension to connect the microwave to the generator.

How to run the microwave with the generator?

Connecting the microwave to the generator may seem tedious if you are not a technical person. 

I experienced the same when I first installed my generator to connect it to a microwave. 

After that test and trial, I became familiar with those technical processes, and why not share the same with you? 

Follow the steps I mentioned below to connect your microwave to the generator.

Microwave wattage

As the first step, you must precisely know the wattage requirement of your microwave.

After calculating the wattage requirement, you must install the generator not less than the wattage requirement of the microwave and not so higher than the requirement.

Because both can burn the wire or circuit, damaging the microwave or the generator. 

You can see the microwave label to gather information on voltage and amperage requirements to calculate the wattage requirement. 

A generator you install must have a 120 volts and 20 amp ground outlet. 

Install the generator little larger than the wattage requirement of the microwave.

It doesn’t mean installing an extra larger one.

Choose the right outlet

It is impossible to connect the microwave to a generator directly because sometimes generators won’t come with the right outlet. 

In such a case, you can use an extension cord to connect the microwave to the generator. 

While buying an extension code to connect with a generator outdoors, get extensions designed especially to be moisture resistant.

Connect the extension cord

Before connecting the cables, ensure the generator is not positioned on an uneven surface.

Keep the generator 12 feet away from the microwave. 

You must choose an extension cord with 14 gauge to connect the microwave to the generator.

Ensure that the extension cord is not of poor quality because thin wires of a poor quality extension cord will get burned, damaging both the generator and the microwave.

It is always best to use a short electric cord with thick wire capable of handling high voltage currents. 

The generator outlet must be connected to the male end of the high-duty extension code of 12 gauge. 

And you can connect the female end of an extension cord to the microwave power cord.

Operate the microwave

After connecting the electric cords and switching on the generator, your microwave will work seamlessly.

People commonly face the issue of microwaves not working when connected to the generator.

If you also face the same issue, you can hire a professional to determine what went wrong.

Disconnect the cables

After operating the microwave oven with the generator, don’t forget to unplug all the connections you made, as it is not advisable to keep them plugged in. 

Disconnect the microwave from the female end of the extension cord.

Then switch off the generator and unplug the male end of an extension cord connected to the generator. 

Now all the cables are disconnected, ensuring safe practice.

What size of a generator can I use to connect to the microwave?

Installing the right generator to handle the power consumption of the microwave oven is an important part you should be careful about. 

To know the size of the generator, you should calculate the wattage required by your microwave. 

Calculating the wattage of your microwave is very simple.

All you have to do is to check the user handbook, or you can check the UL label on your microwave to know the voltage and amperage of your device. 

With the voltage and the amperage required, calculate the wattage requirement of your microwave. 

Multiply your microwave’s voltage and amperage requirement, resulting in the wattage required to power it up.

Wattage=volts amperage

Let’s assume that you have a microwave of 1500 watts with 13 amp and 120 volts requirement, and then you need a generator capable of supplying 1700 watts for a safe operation. 

Microwaves convert electrical energy into thermal energy and cook efficiently for less time.

So a generator must be capable of withstanding a highly efficient power requirement.

What are the common issues faced while running the microwave into the generator?

While running a microwave with a generator, I faced some issues.

I want to make you aware of the problems so you can be prepared to deal with them.


A wattage issue is common when you run a microwave with a generator. 

The generator must have an extra watt than the wattage required by the microwave oven. 

Sometimes, when you overload the other appliance with the microwave oven, it will affect the generator and the appliances. 

If the generator wattage is higher than the microwave, there will be a hazardous effect likely when the generator wattage is lower than the microwave.

So you need to calculate the wattage requirement of your device precisely.

Energy consumption

Running a microwave into the generator is costly because it consumes high power from the generator.

If you have a fuel consumption generator, it will empty fuel soon, so you have to refill the generator again.

Complex connections

As we discussed earlier, you must use an electric code extension to run the microwave oven into the generator. 

Sometimes an extension cord may fail and result in the burning of the extension wire. 

So it is important to purchase good quality extension cords with the capacity to bear higher wattage. 

And while connecting the generator power cord and the microwave oven power cord with an extension cord, you must make sure you are connecting the male end of the extension cord with the generator and the female end with the microwave oven.

Can you run a microwave on a 1000-watt generator?

As I mentioned earlier, installing a generator with higher power wattage is more important than a microwave oven. 

Only a microwave oven with the lower wattage requirement of 650 wattages will run with a 1000 watts generator, and the microwave oven will use all the power. 

An average microwave oven requires 1000 wattage to power up.

In this case, running a microwave oven into a generator of 1000 wattage would be dangerous. 

Consider installing a generator of higher wattage to avoid any hazards.

Will a 2000w generator run a microwave?

A 2000-wattage generator will be enough to run an average microwave oven which requires 1000 to 1500 wattage. 

It will be safe to run a microwave oven with a 2000w generator instead of a 1000w generator.

Will the inverter generator run a microwave?

An inverter generator will run the microwave oven if the wattage requirement and the generator align. 

Like a generator, you have to calculate the wattage requirement of the microwave oven to determine which inverter will fit your device. 

Check the handbook manual or the product’s website to know the wattage requirement of your oven. 

If you have an old microwave oven and lost the user manual, you couldn’t even find the information online.

You can try the method given below.

It is an effective method to determine the wattage requirement of your microwave oven. 

  • Start by taking 250 ml of water in the 2 glass measuring cups. 
  • The next step is adding 5 to 6 ice cubes to lower the water temperature. Now the water will cool after a few minutes. 
  • Before the ice cubes dissolve, remove them from the water. 
  • Throw the excess water if the measuring cup is extra full. 
  • Keep the cups inside the microwave oven. 
  • Set the temperature of the oven to the highest. 
  • Calculate how many minutes it takes to boil the cold water. 
  • If the water boils within two minutes, you can assume it requires 1000 wattage. 
  • If it takes more than four minutes to bring the boil in the cold water, it indicates that the oven is slow, which means it requires a few wattages of around 650w to 700w. 

This method is referred to as the cooking power of the microwave oven.

With this, you have to consider another factor called power consumption. 

Power consumption is referred to as the input wattage, and cooking power is the output wattage.

In the microwave oven, the input wattage must be higher than the output wattage.

While installing an inverter generator, you must consider these two factors. 

If you cannot figure out the power consumption of your microwave oven, there is a technique you can follow.

The average efficiency of the slow-running microwave oven is 65%. 

And the cooking power of your microwave oven is 700w.

Let’s keep the power consumption of your microwave oven to X. 

The formula is X * 65/100 = 700w

Then X = 1100 wattages. 

Now you have calculated the power consumption of your microwave oven as 1100 Wattages. 

With these numbers, you can easily determine the wattage requirement of your microwave oven. 

And you also need to consider the peak wattage and the continuous wattage requirement of your microwave oven. 

Peak wattage occurs when the device starts and will last up to 5 seconds. 

Then it will shift to the continuous wattage condition. 

During the peak surge, the power consumption will be high.

While in continuous or running conditions, the power consumption will reduce gradually. 

The inverter generator must be able to handle both these power consumption conditions. 

Usually, the high-rated inverter can withstand these two stages of power consumption.

The best generators to run a microwave?

Here are some generators that you can use with your microwave.

Protector QS Standby Generator

This generator has 22kW, so it will be sufficient to run the microwave along with all other home appliances.

Its unique feature is the liquid-cooled engine.

So, it is quiet and regulates the temperature effectively. It is also quite expensive, but it is worth buying for the best experience it gives. 

PowerProtect Standby Generator

This generator comes with 1200w.

You can use this generator if you have a low-functioning microwave with a 650 watts requirement.

It has a five-year warranty option.

It consumes less fuel compared to other generators.

7043 Home Standby Generator

It has a wifi option to examine the generator’s condition whenever needed.

It also comes with 22kW, sufficient to run the microwave and almost all your home’s electronic appliances.

PowerPact 7,500-Watt (LP), 6,000-Watt (NG) Standby Generator

As the name suggests, this generator would be sufficient to run the microwave oven.

Still, you run other appliances because of the high wattage for the 2000 watts requirement microwave oven capable of damaging your device. 

It comes with a three-year warranty.

The removable sides will be easy to access everywhere you want.

Final thoughts

Choosing the right generator is the crucial step in running the microwave oven with a generator. Follow the steps mentioned in the article to calculate the wattage requirement of your microwave oven. 

The step-by-step process mentioned in the article will be useful in successfully connecting the microwave oven with the generator. 

Avoid using low-quality extension cords to secure the generator and the microwave oven.

Reference: APPLIANCE STANDARDS AWARENESS PROJECT, Electricity usage of a Microwave.

Sharing is caring!

Jeniffer Smith

Hi, I am Jeniffer Smith, a housemaker and blogger, and I grew up in Shrewsbury, Massachusetts. I have been researching and fixing appliances and other things around the home and kitchen from a young age to help my single mother. Every time something went wrong, I couldn't rest until I fixed it. And ever since, I have enjoyed fixing things around my home, and I am always ready to help my friends and family with advice and hands-on help. Since we were always looking for affordable ways of fixing things, we rarely hired experts and tried to fix most things ourselves. That interest brought me to write for this blog, as I realized my knowledge could help many people trying to fix things around their homes on their own without spending hundreds of dollars.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recent Posts