Salvaging a Microwave with a Broken Tray

A couple of weeks ago, the glass tray (or turntable) in our Panasonic microwave, model NN-SN733B, broke in half. This seems to be a common thing that happens with microwaves. I’m a big proponent of home repairs or buying replacement parts when possible, so I really didn’t want to go the route of buying a new microwave. Our particular model was out of production though, so it took some research to figure out which part number we needed.

Referencing the Owner’s Manual
We scan and save electronic copies of all our appliance owner’s manuals, so I was able to access the one for our microwave. It did list the part number for our model, but I could not locate this part number on the Panasonic website or I was tempted to throw caution to the wind and just buy a replacement tray that seemed to be the right size and fit, but then I decided to do nothing and see if a better idea occurred to me.

Seeking Help from Panasonic
After a bit of inertia, I decided to contact Panasonic customer service. They directed me to their parts supplier, Encompass. I opened a chat online with Encompass and told them I had an out-of-production Panasonic microwave, gave them the model number, and told them I was looking for a compatible microwave tray. In no time at all, they came back to me with the part number and a link to purchase on their site.

Temporary Workarounds
While I was waiting for the replacement microwave tray to arrive, we still needed to use the microwave. We had an extra tray saved from a previous microwave that we tried, but since it wasn’t the right part, it didn’t rotate. We also tried putting whatever we were microwaving directly on the rotating bit, and you had to balance it just right so it didn’t tip over. Finally, we placed a large plate on the rotating bit and then put whatever we were microwaving on top of that, be it another plate or a bowl. There wasn’t one way that we liked best, so we switched among these three depending on how we felt that day.

It Fits!
I ordered the part, not sure if it would actually fit or not, but figured it was worth a shot. The part was approximately $30 all in, and a new microwave would have been $200. While I waited for it to arrive, I looked in the owner’s manual again and found out that the reason I couldn’t locate the correct part online was because the part number in the manual had a typo of extra characters inserted. As soon as I received the part, I opened the box and tried it out. It was exactly the right part, a perfect fit, and we’re super happy to have a fully functional microwave again.


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