GE Profile Microwave Bursts Into Flame

worthyMarch 4, 2012

A week ago, I smelled something acrid. Thought I had forgotten about a tea kettle. When I reached the kitchen, mrs. worthy was already on the job, quenching the flames shooting from the microwave control panel.

What a mess! Black soot everywhere. An adjacent cabinet door scorched.

The villain was a GE Profile Microwave, a permanently mounted model with an integral exhaust fan. It came with the house; it looked fine, but we never used it, only the fan. At the time of the fire, neither the fan nor the microwave were in operation.

There was a US recall on a similar unit that combines a microwave and a conventional oven and was sold from 2000-2003.

However, the origin of the fire in ours was similar, though the unit was built in 1994. The Model Number is JVM192KC-02.

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What?! Neither was in operation??? How does that work?

I am so glad you were both home and close enough to quench the fire safely. How scary. Thanks for alerting others.

Please let the Consumer Products Safety Division know too of course: link to the CPSC.

I'm so glad you're all right!

    Bookmark   March 5, 2012 at 12:38AM
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I have a GE Profile over-the-range Convection Microwave that is about 2 years old. The convection part does allow a max temp of 450, though the highest we've used is 350-400. I hope the parts in it don't catch fire!

    Bookmark   March 5, 2012 at 10:41AM
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I know how scary that is...we had a fire with our GE fridge last month. We were also home and able to put it out. I did file a report as Aliris suggests. I also posted pics of the damage on the GE Facebook page and emailed GE Customer Service. They contacted me and replaced at no cost even though the unit was older. I won't ever use the new/replaced icemaker again out of fear of a repeat fire but I do use the refrigerator.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2012 at 11:04AM
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We are in Canada and I did report it to theConsumer Products Safety Directorate of Health Canada.

I always check for auto recalls and have found ones we were not notified about. But I never thought of checking on appliances.

Thanks for the tip to the GE Facebook page.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2012 at 11:33AM
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OH MY GOD! How horrible!

I was just debating with DH about whether or not a microwave on a shelf - not OTR - needs any special venting or not. Our countertop one is fine and we don't want to get a new one. I said, not 20 minutes ago, "Well I'd rather get a new one if it's safer! I mean, we don't want to spend all of this money on cabinets just to have them burst into flames."

So sorry this happened.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2012 at 5:40PM
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Is it possible that a critter in the walls chewed through something? Or that something had started smoldering when you last used it and there was a delay before the flames started? How often did you clean the fan?

    Bookmark   March 11, 2012 at 7:13PM
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Our top of the line GE dishwasher did a similar thing in our previous home. It was running and then the control module caught on fire and all began to melt. The only way we could shut it down was to throw the breaker.
We found out that there was a recall but it didn't include our newer by one year model.
Never another GE for me. It was terrifying!

    Bookmark   March 11, 2012 at 7:34PM
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Just a followup.

Health Canada forwarded my concerns to a representative of the

Harm Mitigation Programs
Electrical Safety Authority [Ontario]

The Authority then sent a representative from the microwave manufacturer--Samsung. As the microwave was sitting on my lawn, he removed the control panel and declared there was no fault with the microwave. End of story. Very satisfying resolution.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2012 at 10:45AM
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