How to test for Microwave Leakage

Knowing how to use a microwave leakage detector can be a handy add-on for anyone who offers test and tag as service.

Microwave Leakage Testing falls under the Australian Standard AS/NZS 60335.2.25 – household and similar electrical appliances safety.

To avoid any confusion, it's worth mentioning that electrically testing a microwave is a separate procedure that’s covered under the AS/NZS3760 Standard.

The reason for doing this separate test is because radiation has the potential to leak through the door and seals, which in high doses can be harmful to anyone that goes near that microwave oven. So essentially, we’re checking that the radiation levels around the microwave are below the specified limit of 5mW/cm2.

Using a Microwave Leakage Detector

To conduct this test correctly, you’ll need a couple of items:

Step 1: We need to clear the past information on the leakage detector - so hold your finger down on the ‘ZERO’ button until you hear a beep.

Step 2: Attach a spacer to ensure you’re measuring from the correct distance.

Step 3: Press the ‘MAX’ button - this will provide us with the highest readout on the digital display, which will need to be recorded on our label later on.

Step 4: Place a cup of water inside the microwave oven and press the start button.

Step 5: While the microwave is running, use the microwave leakage detector to test for any leakages by running it across the edges, seals and glass window.

Step 6: We’ll now be given a measurement value on our digital display. This value needs to be lower than 5mW/cm2 to pass the Australian Standard. If this value does go above the threshold, the leakage detector will noticeably shine its red LED light.

Step 7: Lastly, fill out a microwave test label and stick it on the side of the appliance. You’ll need specify who tested it, radiation levels (the reading our tester gave us), power level of the microwave and the next test date. According to the Standards, the frequency of this test is conducted yearly.