The Best Microwave for Freightliner Cascadia
What to know

The Best Microwave for Freightliner Cascadia

As the flagship model of Freightliner trucks, the Freightliner Cascadia got sold chiefly in North American markets until 2020. The heavy-duty semi-trailer truck ended up getting an export version made for the New Zealand and Australian markets.

The international truck model also regularly houses appliances such as refrigerators, toasters, waffle irons, coffeemakers, and (of course) microwaves. So what’s the best microwave for Freightliner Cascadia? Keep on reading to find out.

Buying Guide for Best Freightliner Cascadia Microwaves

In Freightliner’s new Cascadia, truckers out there currently have the option to get a full-sized microwave for their quick-heating needs. You can also go about easily and quickly installing such a device when push comes to shove.

However, keep in mind that in order to work with other appliances in the truck such as a laptop, refrigerator with freezer, color TV, and so forth, you need a particularly powerful inverter installed as well.

Further reading: Your Guide for the Best Truck Inverter for Microwave

What Should You Consider When Picking a Truck Microwave?

You need to consider several things when shopping for a Freightliner Cascadia microwave, including its size, wattage, additional features, and inverter size.

Size of the Truck Microwave

Even the kitchen space of a huge semi-trailer truck like the Freightliner Cascadia cannot compare to a regular kitchen in terms of size. In turn, you might need to sacrifice countertop footprint size and power to save yourself kitchen real estate.

A microwave designed for trucks can range from 10 to 18 inches in length. Before buying such a device, you should measure the free space you have to spare, whether it’s a cabinet or overhead OTR space.

Microwave for Freightliner Cascadia
Microwave for Freightliner Cascadia

The four common sizes for truck microwaves include the following.

  • Compact: Usually, portable or solo microwaves have less than 1 cubic foot of capacity and can be used inside your car.
  • Midsize: This light-duty microwave type has a capacity ranging from 1 cubic foot to 1.5 cubic feet. Most middle-class homes have this model.
  • Full-Size: This medium-duty full-sized microwave can go from 1.6 cubic feet to 2 cubic feet. Many small restaurants have this model.
  • Extra-Large: Heavy-duty commercial microwaves found in large restaurants or hospital kitchens have 2 cubic feet and above capacity.

Preprogrammed Menus

Some truck microwaves come with preprogrammed menus. They allow you to heat up or cook different food types using different presets. You can cook things from popcorn to mug cake as well as quiches and eggs.

Just pick a setting and cook your dish. You can even set your own custom settings as well in the microwave’s memory banks for good measure.

Safety or Child Lock

Even if you’re not traveling with a child, the safety lock helps keep your microwave from being accessed by just anyone. Some microwaves can only unlock if you put in a code similar to the lock screen of your cellphone. You can even use the same number too.

A truck microwave requires such a lock because the vibrations of a traveling truck could accidentally activate it without food inside it, which could damage its interior.

Smart Sensors

More expensive truck microwaves use smart sensors to adjust your setting or heating mode in accordance to the interior humidity. This prevents overcooking or drying out the food excessively.

With these sensors, you can put the food inside the Freightliner Cascadia microwave and have it automatically cooked even if you put it in the wrong preset for the temperature and time.

Variable Power Options

Truck microwaves should also have variable power levels to control microwave power in case you wish to do things like defrosting fish without it cooking, so you’ll have to microwave it at medium to low instead of at the highest power level.

What Size of Inverter Do You Need to Run Your Truck Microwave?

We recommend getting a 1.5-kilowatt pure sine wave inverter coupled with a 1-kilowatt mid-sized microwave. Any microwave below 1-kilowatt, like a portable solo microwave with 700 watts of power, can work with such an inverter as well.

Essentially, you need to figure out your microwave’s continuous wattage rating. This should be listed on the microwave’s doorjamb. It might also be found on the serial number tag or user manual at the back of the device.

Visit the manufacturer’s website for that info too. This way, in case you can’t afford a full 1.5-kilowatt inverter, you can get the next best thing in accordance with your microwave specs.

What are the Estimated Watts for Microwaves and Other Appliances?

The estimated watts of the following appliances are as follows.

ApplianceEstimated Watts
Air Conditioner2.2 to 5 kilowatts (starting)

1 to 1.5 kilowatts (running)

Toaster0.8 to 1.5 kilowatts
Microwave1.1 to 2 kilowatts
Space Heater1 to 1.5 kilowatts
10-Cup Coffee Pot1.2 kilowatts
Waffle Iron1.2 kilowatts
Hot Plate1.2 kilowatts
Electric Frying Pan1.2 kilowatts
Color TV (25 inches)0.3 kilowatts
Refrigerator or Freezer0.6 kilowatts
Laptop Computer0.05 to 0.075 kilowatts

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are several frequently asked questions regarding your typical truck microwave.

Should I go full-sized, midsized, or compact?

A Freightliner Cascadia can fit up to a full-sized microwave but with obvious power rationing depending on your inverter size and microwave wattage. A portable microwave solves most power rationing issues.

However, you have to sacrifice a bit of standard-sized microwave utility in order to balance out microwave portability. Some portables offer decent service though—the Amazon Basics Microwave comes to mind with its voice-activated operation.

What is a compact microwave?

A compact microwave, as opposed to a solo microwave with 700 watts of power, works with a 12-volt connector or USB port. This means you can bring it anywhere in your car and use it via cigarette port. They’re notoriously slow cookers though.

Is a compact microwave safe?

The main issue with them that nets the complaints in sites like Amazon involves them being much slower at reheating food or boiling water compared to their midsized or full-sized counterparts.

For reference, 1-kilowatt microwaves take about a minute to boil water or cook food. Also, many portables have components that make it shut off when overheating. Its material composition can also withstand high temperatures.

What should I consider when using a portable truck microwave?

Pay attention to the following when using a portable microwave.

  • Check the arrangement and rotation of your food to ensure it’s evenly heated.
  • Use FDA-approved containers made of ceramic, heatproof glass, or microwave-safe plastic (like from Tupperware or Rubbermaid Brilliance).
  • After cooking, make it a point to regularly clean the microwave. In case you lack enough water to clean it, wipe it down with disposable wet wipes or dampened paper towels.

Top 7 Best Microwaves for Freightliner Cascadia

You have to take into consideration as a trucker numerous factors to get a perfectly suitable yet portable microwave to use on your truck. With that in mind, here are the top 8 best microwaves for your Freightliner Cascadia you should get your hands on.

1. The Best-Seller Microwave That Pushes the Limits of Your Cascadia’s Inverter

The best-selling Toshiba EM131A5C-SS Microwave Oven has the highest ratings and the biggest capacity to enable you to get a high-class microwave option for your Freightliner Cascadia.

Toshiba EM131A5C-SS Microwave Oven with Smart Sensor
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The midsized microwave is the number 1 best seller in Countertop Microwave Ovens on Amazon. It also offers ECO mode, a sound on/off function, a smart sensor, and an easy-clean interior. It has all the bells and whistles of a quality truck microwave—a shining example for this list.

Features:

Power1.1 kilowatts
Power Levels10
Capacity1.2 cubic feet
Size17.14 x 20.51 x 12.82 inches
Weight34.6 pounds
MaterialStainless steel
Type by UsageLight-Duty

2. A Comfy Microwave Oven with Ample Power Yet a More Cost-Effective Price

As for the less heralded or known company of COMFEE (or Comfee), you get the COMFEE’ EM720CPL-PM Countertop Microwave Oven. It outdoes the Toshiba option by having over 11 power levels despite only offering 700 watts of power versus 1.1 kilowatts.

COMFEE' EM720CPL-PM Countertop Microwave Oven
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Made partly of stainless steel and plastic, the slightly lighter midsized truck microwave serves as a perfect fit for your Freightliner Cascadia because of its multiple preset modes for frozen vegetables, beverages (coffee and tea), pizza, potato, and popcorn.

Features:

Power700 watts
Power Levels11
Capacity‎0.7 cubic feet
Size17.3 x 13 x 10.2 inches
Weight20.3 pounds
MaterialStainless steel and plastic
Type by UsageLight-Duty

3. A Nostalgic Microwave with Old-Timey Controls and a Modern Twist

Now for something more nostalgic that comes in the form of the Nostalgia RMO4BK Countertop Microwave Oven. It lives up to its company or the brand name due to its retro design that’s reminiscent of 1950s-to-1960s-style dial microwaves, but with a modern twist.

 Nostalgia RMO4BK Retro 0.9 Cubic Foot 800-Watt Countertop Microwave Oven
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The modern twist? Things like multiple cooking modes and LED displays to counteract the retro aesthetics. It also comes in a modernist jet black color, like many other microwaves nowadays. You can also get customizable cooking settings with 12 preprogrammed presets from it.

Features:

Power800 watts
Power Levels5
Capacity0.9 cubic feet
Size19 x 15 x 11 inches
Weight35.5 pounds
MaterialGlass and metal
Type by UsageLight-Duty

4. A Smart and Portable Microwave with Voice Control That’s Anything But Basic

Although not as powerful as the Toshiba, the Amazon Basics Microwave matches power with COMFEE. What’s more, it’s anything but basic. Powered not only by watts but also by Amazon’s Alexa voice assistant, the AmazonBasics Microwave can work in the Freightliner Cascadia or an RV.

 Amazon Basics Microwave, Small
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Alexa allows you to choose any setting or cook any food as long as you have online connectivity. The program also enables you to activate the microwave through voice commands. The device also comes with 0.7 cubic feet of interior space, 10 power levels, and a simple keypad for “manual” overrides.

Features:

Power700 watts
Power Levels10
Capacity0.7 cubic feet
Size17.3 x 10.1 x 14.1 inches
Weight21.9 pounds
MaterialStainless steel
Type by UsageLight-Duty

5. Although It’s Underpowered It Makes for a Better Fit for Cascadias with No Inverter

In regards to the Commercial CHEF Countertop Microwave Oven CHM660B, it’s probably the weakest-powered microwave on this list at 600 watts. This means it takes you extra-long, by about a few minutes, to heat up or cook your food compared to a 700-watt or 1-kilowatt microwave.

 Commercial Chef Countertop Microwave Oven
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However, it more than makes up for it by offering portability that cuts down on your power usage even when you have an inverter installed with your Freightliner Cascadia. This allows you to run other appliances, from the fridge to your laptop.

Features:

Power600 watts
Power Levels6
Capacity0.6 cubic feet
Size17.75 x 12.5 x 10.25 inches
Weight23.1 pounds
MaterialStainless steel
Type by UsageLight-Duty

6. It’s the Sharpest Microwave Tool in the Shed with Distinctive Sharp Quality

Made back in 2017, the Sharp Microwave ZSMC0710BB stands out on this list of truck microwaves for the Freightliner Cascadia by offering some characteristically Sharp features. This means energy-saving features like the +30 seconds key for instant start, auto defrost, time defrost, and time cook modes.

 Sharp Microwaves ZSMC0710BB Sharp 700W Countertop Microwave Oven
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It even has express cooking that allows you to cook food for up to 6 minutes and 11 power levels for gradual heating or careful fish defrosting.

Features:

Power700 watts
Power Levels11
Capacity0.7 cubic feet
Size12.8 x 17.3 x 10.2 inches
Weight21.4 Pounds
MaterialSteel
Type by UsageLight-Duty

7. Last But Not Least, the Budget and Average Truch Microwave in Black Matte

Last but not least is the Black Farberware Classic FMO07ABTBKA. This black matte class microwave with a 700-watt maximum power mostly matches the specs of many of the microwaves on this list to maximize wattage while not becoming as underpowered as the 600-watt Commercial CHEF CHM660B.

Farberware Classic FMO07ABTBKA 0.7 Cu. Ft.
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It also has the add 30-second control, its own express cooking mode, an LED display, digital controls, and specific settings for heating food, beverages, frozen vegetables, pizza, potatoes, and popcorn.

Features:

Power700 watts
Power Levels10
Capacity0.7 cubic feet
Size17.75 x 12.91 x 10.1 inches
Weight21.4 pounds
MaterialMetal (black matte)
Type by UsageLight-Duty

What You Need to Find Out

A truck microwave—sometimes a portable or solo microwave, other times a full-fledged countertop microwave—serves as an essential appliance for drivers when it comes to meal preparations as they spend most of their time inside their truck, driving from state to state.

With that said, the best microwave for the Freightliner Cascadia specifically that balances quality portable performance with cost-effective affordability is the Toshiba EM131A5C-SS Microwave Oven. This is followed by the COMFEE’ EM720CPL-PM Countertop Microwave Oven.

We hope that this information ends up being helpful to you. Keep on trucking!

References:

  1. Jimmy Nevarez, “New Cascadia Microwave Install“, TeamRunSmart.com, November 13, 2018
  2. TeamRunSmart, “Installing a Microwave in a Freightliner Cascadia“, YouTube, November 13, 2018

Through the years, the microwave oven has become a standard appliance for all homes. It is safe to say that there is no home without a microwave oven. If you are looking for a microwave oven that best fits your needs, You find the right website.

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