If you’re in the market for a kitchen appliance that lets you make healthy and guiltless fried meals using little to no oil, the NuWave oven might just be the thing, or maybe an air fryer. Thanks to the combined power of conduction, convection, and infrared cooking technology, the NuWave oven minimizes the need for oil in cooking, which essentially means you can eat all the foods your doctor told you told you were bad for you.
Moreover, the NuWave oven has a simple and user-friendly interface, with Touch & Go operation, turning even casual and unenthusiastic cooks into chefs. Not only that, the oven saves you time, space and money. It’s able to cook anywhere between 50 to 70 percent faster than a conventional oven.
Also, most models have a small footprint and will fit perfectly on your kitchen countertop, in a dorm-room corner, RV, boat, even tent if you have a good power source. Finally, with the NuWave, you’ll use as much as 75 or 85 percent less energy than with a regular oven, meaning it will pay for itself in a matter of months with the money you’ll save on electricity.
A few things you must know before we start
First of all, the NuWave oven is not a microwave and can’t replace one (a surprising number of people make that mistake). This is a countertop oven, or, more precisely, an infrared countertop oven. The oven takes the power of a regular conduction oven, the speed of a professional convection oven, and, finally, the penetrating power of far infrared cooking technology, then combines all of it in a compact and portable kitchen appliance.
It not only cooks, but also air fries, bakes, barbecues, broils, defrosts, dehydrates, grills, reheats, steams, and a whole lot more. The way it achieves such versatility is by combining the three abovementioned technologies. First, there’s conduction, which is essentially the same way your everyday gas stove or fry-pan work. Hot thing touches a cold thing, cold thing heats up.
Then, there’s convection, which essentially means that a fan takes the hot air and circulates it throughout the oven, distributing heat evenly. Finally, for cooking on the inside, there’s the far infrared cooking technology which makes use of invisible heat waves to penetrate the food, making sure it’s not raw.
Why Is the Dome Important?
The dome’s primary purpose is trapping the hot air on the inside of the oven. Also, the design of the dome facilitates air circulation, and, combined with the specially designed fan propelled by a quiet electric motor, evenly distributes the heat, cooking the food uniformly.
Additionally, the dome protects you, as a user, from accidental serious burns, though the surface does get quite hot during operation, and may cause slight injury. This is why it would be a good idea to use oven mitts during and after cooking, just to be on the safe side.
Finally, the dome serves to support the power head, which is where all of these wonderful pieces of technology are held. However, unlike the dome itself, and the rest of the parts for that matter, the power head is not dishwasher safe.
The Good Stuff about the Dome
The best thing about the NuWave dome is that it is pretty lightweight, which makes not only the dome but also the whole rig all the more portable. It’s made of fairly durable heat resistant plastic, but still, try to avoid touching it with your bare hands during operation, and also let it cool a bit before cleaning it (and you should clean it after every use, just like every other appliance). Incidentally, the fact that it’s made of plastic makes cleaning it all the easier, because you don’t have to worry about breaking it, as you probably would if it were made of glass.
The Bad Stuff about the Dome
The NuWave oven is a great product for cooking, but the manufacturer more or less warns to expect the dome to develop cracks after a year or two of use. This applies particularly to the older type of domes, which you’ll recognize by the fact they’re completely transparent. Yes, the quality of the food made in the NuWave is certainly great, but there are just too many people who have a gripe with the dome over the cracks on the Internet to ignore.
Apparently, the manufacturer has issued a new line of domes, called the Power Dome. Officially, the Power Dome is all but indestructible and built to withstand extreme temperatures. The material it is made from is polyphenyl sulfone, a plastic polymer that is designed to have significant resistance to impact while remaining BPA-free.
It is apparently inspired by and made with the same technology used for making windshields for jumbo-jets and NASA spaceships. Its strength is stressed by the fact it comes with a three-year warranty, but that’s the same period that applies to the older model.
The tinted Power Dome, however, is more durable than the un-tinted model, and the tint helps retain heat much better, so there’s that.
How to Fix the NuWave Dome
Don’t. It’s much easier to replace the dome than try to fix it, and here’s why – most people will try applying duct tape, super glue or some other adhesive, and they’ll not only be going on a fool’s errand, but they’ll endanger themselves. Consider this – what is the oven used for? Cooking, or, in other words – preparing food using intense heat! What do you think heating glue or duct tape around food will result in? Exactly.
If, however, you are determined to not get a replacement for some reason, you can try soldering the dome, though this brings a host of other problems, such as weaker integrity that will eventually lead to the dome shattering. Alternatively, if you use the wrong piece of plastic to fill the gap, like something that contains toxic materials, the risks to your health far outweigh any possible danger to your budget.
How to Replace the NuWave Dome
As of this writing, the manufacturer offers the possibility of replacing a cracked dome, but you may find varying prices online, on sites such as Amazon, eBay, and Bonanza. This is by far cheaper than buying a new oven, though it seems highly unlikely that the manufacturer would complain if you did. However, since you’re already looking for a replacement for your NuWave dome, it might be prudent to upgrade to the Power Dome, in case you haven’t already.
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
- How do I clean the dome?
Answer: If you’re washing it in the sink, make sure the sink is filled with warm, soapy water. Scrub all the scrum off the dome, and then rinse the bubbles under a stream of warm water. You can then dry it with a towel, or leave it to dry on its own. If you prefer to wash your dome in the dishwasher, place it either in the bottom or top rack, but make sure to not have it on the heated dry cycle.
- How do I know when to replace my dome?
Answer: Well, a fault-line or two are not dangerous, but as soon as you get a crack, the dome can’t retain the heat as well (or at all if the crack is significant). Some might try to mend this, but anything short of replacing the dome would be ill-advised.
- Where can I find a replacement for my NuWave dome?
Answer: You can find the NuWave oven online from a variety of vendors such as Amazon, eBay, Walmart, Bed Bath & Beyond, while some vendors like the last two also sell the NuWave in store. A word of advice (which you might want to extend to any shopping in the future) – take your time reading customer reviews and find out as much as you can about the product before actually buying a model.
- What are some different types of NuWave Oven domes?
Answer: The manufacturer offers, as of yet, four types of domes. These are – the Oven Pro Plus Power Dome, the Power Dome, the Standard Dome and the Mini Dome. The Oven Pro Plus Power Dome and the Power Dome are two newer types designed to be shatter resistant, as well as withstand high temperatures. Conversely, the Standard Dome is just what it says on the tin, while the Mini Dome is designed to go with the NuWave Mini Oven, a compact, lower-wattage cousin of the standard NuWave oven.
- How can I prevent the dome from cracking?
Answer: You can prolong the lifespan of your dome by taking care of it, washing it after each use, and avoiding impacts, the works.
- What is the dome made of?
Answer: All four aforementioned types of domes are made of heat resistant plastic, which makes them lightweight and easily portable. The newer line of models, The Oven Pro Plus Power Dome and the Power Dome are made of is polyphenyl sulfone, which is a BPA-free plastic polymer designed to withstand serious force.
- Where is the dome made?
Answer: The dome, as well as other parts, is manufactured by Hearthware, Inc; Libertyville, IL.
- How do you take the dome off mid-cooking, to turn the food over?
Answer: There is a pause button you need to press before taking the dome off. Alternatively, you could program the timer for whatever time the cooking chart recommends per side, then flip the food and cook the other side the same time. Whichever way you go about it, it would be prudent to use oven mitts to handle the dome.