Re: Problems using regular enamel paint in microwave oven?

Discussion in 'Electronic Repair' started by Sam Goldwasser, Apr 7, 2007.

  1. I'm not sure why some people appear to be turning this into rocket science.

    Here is a reply from John Gallawa of Microtech at, generally regarded as the most
    comprehensive site for microwave ovens on the Web.

    First my question (similar but not word-for-word what I posted here)
    and then John's reply:

    >> Someone emailed me in a huff about having used ordinary paint to touch
    >> up a microwave and now everything "smells funky" and it "smokes". This
    >> was done under where the turntable wheels move.

    >> Have you ever heard of problems of this type? They say that it was
    >> white gloss enamel, that they waited 24 hours for it to dry, and that
    >> surfaces were cleaned thoroughly.

    >> I've been trying to get them to do some tests to determine if it is a
    >> continuing problem or just residual solvent odor that will go away.
    >> I had them remove the turntable and just put a cup of water in to act
    >> as a load. They then said there was no smoke but the water smelled so
    >> bad they couldn't get near it.

    >> Any info would be appreciated.

    >> Thanks!

    >> --- sam

    > From: John (via email):
    > First, though, it is probably not the paint. If they used standard
    > enamel, that should be fine. We used to use off-white enamel to repaint
    > cavities.
    > If the reason they cleaned and repainted the cavity surfaces was because
    > of discoloring due to arcing, then possibly there were some tiny (the
    > size of a needle point is all it takes) traces of carbon residue that
    > were not completely eliminated and were subsequently painted over. Or
    > perhaps the wheels of the roller ring/turntable assembly have developed
    > microscopic carbon tracks that are producing small amounts of arcing.
    > Of course, there is the possibility of another problem that is just
    > coincidental to the paint job. For example, there could be infinitesimal
    > amounts of arcing from the waveguide cover to an adjacent metal surface,
    > so small that it is goes noticed.
    > For removing residual odor, we have always had good success by
    > placing used coffee grounds in the cooking cavity overnight for several
    > nights. The grounds do a good job of absorbing lingering odors.
    > The only problem we ever had with re-painting cavities was the fact that
    > we weren't a paint shop. As long as the surfaces were properly prepared
    > (and that was always the crucial part), though, and the paint was
    > appropriately applied, the outcome was usually acceptable. While cavity
    > paint was available from some manufacturers, in many cases, we would
    > simply purchase a can of off-white enamel from the local hardware store,
    > and this served the purpose.

    In fact, I have now been able to determine from testing done by the
    person who originally was complaining that it is probably just residual
    odor at this point. I had them run the oven with just a water load to
    see if the area of the new paint heated up or behaved strangely. It
    did not. They'll have to try the coffee grounds I guess. :)

    Thanks to all who responded.

    --- sam | Sci.Electronics.Repair FAQ:
    Repair | Main Table of Contents:
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    Important: Anything sent to the email address in the message header above is
    ignored unless my full name AND either lasers or electronics is included in the
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    Sam Goldwasser, Apr 7, 2007
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