Microwave Won’t Start But Timer Works! (Fixed)

Microwaves have multiple elements that work together.

If one of those elements does not work, it can cause the entire appliance to stop heating food or beverages.

A common issue people note is when a microwave won’t start but the timer works.

If a microwave won’t start but the timer works, this means the diode or magnetron has burned out inside the appliance. To fix the issue, unplug the appliance, remove the back panel, inspect the diode connected to the magnetron, and replace it if it is damaged.

If it is the magnetron that is damaged then you will have to replace it. This is not going to be fixable.

Please note that we do not recommend working on this on your own. This is dangerous and it should not be worked on when the unit is still plugged into an electrical source. This can cause an electrical shock.

If you are unsure about what the issue is and don’t want to open the microwave then it is best to call in a specialist to repair it.

This article will help those who do want to attempt to repair a microwave that won’t start but the timer works.

Best Microwave Cover (EDITOR’S CHOICE)

Tovolo Vented Collapsible Medium Microwave Cover (Charcoal)...
  • Microwave Cover: Cover your food in the microwave with the collapsible Tovolo Medium Microwave Cover to encourage even...
  • Collapsible for Easy Storage: This collapsible cover pops up to 3" to cover tall dishes, piles of food, and shallow bowls....
  • Multiple Uses: Save valuable kitchen space with this multipurpose tool. The Tovolo Microwave Cover doubles as a colander,...

Last update on 2024-06-12 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Steps To Fix Microwave That Won’t Start But The Timer Works

1. Unplug The Appliance

When a microwave is not starting, you will need to unplug the appliance.

It is common for the diode or magnetron to blow out. If this is the case, you are not going to get the appliance to start on its own regardless of what you aim to do.

This is why you will need to dig deeper to see what the root cause is.

Start by unplugging the microwave.

You never want to touch the microwave’s internal components when it is still plugged in. The charge is going to be high and that is going to cause an electrical shock if you are not careful.

This is why it is best to start by unplugging the unit and bringing it to a safer spot to work on.

microwave won't start but timer works

2. Remove The Back Cover To Inspect Diode And Magnetron

Now, you are going to remove the back cover.

Once you have set aside the back cover, it is time to look at two parts. You are going to look at the diode that is connected to the magnetron and the magnetron itself.

These are the two parts that create problems such as the one you are experiencing.

Look at which part is damaged.

If both look physically fine, it is likely the charge that is not going through. You can use a multimeter to see which of the two is not receiving a charge.

3. Replace The Damaged Diode Or Magnetron

You will now need to replace the part that is damaged and/or not receiving an electrical charge.

It is important to replace the damaged part before you start using the microwave.

Otherwise, it is not going to turn on the way you want it to.

Be careful while doing this and make sure you are installing a compatible component. You can often go through the manufacturer’s website to find the right part.

microwave won't start but timer works

4. Re-Test The Microwave

There are two ways about doing this.

The first option is going to be to re-test the microwave using a multimeter. you are going to connect the multimeter to pick up the voltage reading on the component you are testing.

This will let you know whether or not it is receiving an electrical charge now.

If it is, this will be noticeable on the tool in your hand.

Another option is to put everything back into place and then connect the microwave to an outlet.

This is also going to let you see whether or not the microwave is working now. Take your time with this process to ensure the microwave does work as you want it to.

Final Thoughts

It is best to look into these steps as you are repairing a microwave that won’t start but the timer works.

If a microwave won’t start but the timer works, the most likely cause has to do with a damaged diode or magnetron. To fix the issue, unplug the microwave, remove the back cover, inspect the diode and magnetron, and replace the damaged component.

It is best to use a multimeter when you are checking the voltage in these components.

It will provide a clear reading of where the issue lies.

The more thorough you are, the easier it’s to find the root cause. This is why you are going to want to take your time while looking at the diode and magnetron in the microwave.

Read More On Kitchens:

  1. Why Is My Microwave’s Start Button Not Working?
  2. Why Is The Microwave Not Turning?
  3. Why Is My Microwave Warm On Top?
  4. What Produces Condensation In A Microwave?
  5. Simple Solution To Prevent Static Noise In Microwave
  6. Can A Glass Plate Be Put In A Microwave?