GE Microwave PF Code? (here’s why & what to do)

If your GE microwave is displaying any sort of an error code it can be worrying. Error codes typically mean that there’s something wrong with the appliance and there will be a time and cost factor involved in solving whatever problem that error code signifies.

However, some error codes are less troublesome than others. If your GE microwave is displaying the PF error code, it can often be solved without any technical skills at all.

Keep reading to find out exactly what the PF error code means on a GE microwave, as well as the best ways to fix this issue.

What Does The PF Error Code Mean On A GE Microwave?

The PF error code on a GE microwave usually means Power Failure and is indicative of an interruption of the power supply to the microwave. This is often caused by a power outage that has caused the microwave to lose power even briefly.

Once the power has been restored, the microwave displays the PF error code to notify you that there has been a loss of power to the appliance.

Please Note: In the interest of safety we do not recommend that you dismantle the microwave yourself. Microwaves contain a high voltage capacitor which can hold a high voltage charge even after the appliance has been disconnected from the power supply. 

If you suspect there is anything wrong internally, we recommend contacting a technician.

What Causes The PF Error Code To Be Displayed?

There are several reasons why the PF error code might be displayed which include;

Probable CauseSolution
Power OutagePress the off or clear button
Power SurgePerform a hard reset
Faulty Power ConnectionCheck the power cord, plug, plug socket and circuit breaker
Electrical GlitchPress the off or clear button/ perform a hard reset
Faulty InstallationCheck the power cord, plug, plug socket and circuit breaker
Wrong Clock SettingReset the clock
Blown Thermal FuseReplace the thermal fuse (contact a technician)
Internal Wiring FaultContact a technician
Faulty SensorsContact a technician to check the sensors in your microwave
Defective Control PanelContact a technician
Malfunctioning Control BoardContact a technician

Let’s take a closer look at each of these issues;

Power Outage

microwave

Your GE microwave could be displaying the PF error code due to a power outage. A power outage can occur due to high winds, storms, lightning strikes or accidents.

Once the power has been restored to your home after a power outage, the microwave realises there has been a disruption and displays the PF error code.  

In many cases, all you will need to do is press the off or clear button on the control panel to cancel any display and reset the appliance. This is usually enough to correct the error code and get your GE microwave working properly again.

Power Surge

Power surges usually occur during or just after a power outage. A power surge is basically a sudden increase or electrical voltage that travels through home electrical systems and can cause serious damage to appliances.

If your GE microwave is displaying the PF error code, it could be due to a power surge. This too can often be cleared simply by pressing the off or clear button on the control panel.

Hard Reset

If that doesn’t work you can perform what is known as a hard reset. To perform a hard reset just do the following;

  1. Disconnect The Power Supply
    Remove the microwave’s plug from the wall socket or flip the circuit breaker to the off position.
  2. Allow Residual Power To Dissipate
    Leave the appliance disconnected from the power supply for 10 to 15 minutes.
  3. Restore The Power
    Plug the microwave back into the wall socket or flip the circuit breaker to the on position.

That’s it, hard reset done.

Faulty Power Connection

The PF error code could have been triggered by a faulty power connection inside your home and not by an external power outage or surge. You will need to check the microwave’s power cord for any frays or other damage.

Then check that the plug is fully inserted into the wall socket and that the socket is working properly. You can do this by plugging something else into the socket and checking that it works properly.

The problem could also be caused by your home’s electrical box or fuse box. If you suspect these could be the cause of the interrupted power supply, contact an electrician to investigate further.

Electrical Glitch

Like all electrical appliances, your microwave could have suffered from an electrical glitch or software error. This is where something shorts internally leading to the control board thinking a power outage has been detected.

This can often be cleared by pressing the off or clear button on the control panel or by performing a hard reset.

Faulty Installation

Microwave

This is similar to the faulty power connection issues above, you will need to check the plug socket, as well as getting the wiring in your home checked by a qualified electrician.

Wrong Clock Setting

In some cases, your GE microwave might display the PF error code if the clock is set at the wrong time. You can often cure this by clicking the clock button and using the keypad (or dial) to set the correct time.

Blown Thermal Fuse

The thermal fuse is a safety feature designed to protect the microwave against damage due to overheating. If the temperature inside the appliance raises above a predetermined level, the thermal fuse will blow cutting power to the appliance.

In some cases, this can trigger the PF error code. The thermal fuse will need to be replaced if this is the case, which is another task best left to an expert.

Internal Wiring Fault

There are a number of electrical wires and connections inside your GE microwave which could become loose over time. Moving the microwave can dislodge a connection ever so slightly. 

When combined with vibrations when the appliance is working, it can cause an interrupted power supply. If you suspect this is the case, we strongly advise you to contact a technician to investigate and fix this issue.

Faulty Sensors

Your GE microwave is fitted with various sensors including;

  • Thermal Sensors
  • Humidity Sensors
  • Temperature Sensors

Any one of which could develop a fault which could be enough to trigger the PF error code. All of these internal sensors are crucial to the proper operation of your microwave. If any become defective in any way, it could cause the PF error code to be displayed.

This is definitely another area where we recommend getting a technician to investigate and repair or replace any faulty parts.

Defective Control Panel

The control panel or touchpad is a delicate component which could become defective very easily. Problems can occur from a short circuit, actual physical damage due to heavy handed usage or an internal fault like a shorted wire or connector.

If the control panel cannot communicate with the control board for whatever reason, it could lead to the microwave displaying the PF error code.

If you suspect the control panel or touchpad is the cause of the problem, you should contact a technician to investigate and replace it for you.

Malfunctioning Control Board

Every function on your microwave is controlled by the control board. If the control board malfunctions due to an electrical fault, software error or shorted circuit, it could trigger the PF error code.

This is another job best left to a technician to investigate. The technician will advise you on whether it’s worth replacing the control board or whether it will be financially more viable to buy a new microwave.

Ways To Help Prevent The PF Error Code On A GE Microwave

person placing a bowl of food inside a microwave

By taking the following steps you can help to prevent your GE microwave from displaying the PF error code. You should;

  • Unplug The Microwave When Not In Use
    When you’re not using your microwave, remove the plug from the wall socket. This will prevent any damage due to a power outage or surge when the appliance isn’t in use.
  • Use A Surge Protector
    By plugging the microwave into a surge protector you will prevent any unwanted power surges from damaging your appliance. The surge protector absorbs any spikes in voltage protecting your appliance and preventing the PF error code.
  • Never Overload The Circuit
    Always ensure that your microwave is never connected to a circuit that is overloaded. Overloading a circuit with multiple electrical appliances that require high power can lead to power fluctuations that could trigger the PF error code. Refrain from using extension cords to power two or more electrical appliances from the same socket.
  • Regularly Maintain Your Microwave
    You should regularly perform maintenance tasks on your microwave including cleaning the interior and exterior, cleaning filters, and inspecting the door latch to ensure it works properly.
  • Stick To Manufacturers Operating Guidelines

Consult your user manual for the correct operating instructions and never use the microwave in ways that are not recommended. Including using the wrong type of cookware, or cooking for longer than the recommended time span.

SEE ALSO: Mini Oven Vs Microwave (which to choose)

Frequently Asked Questions

What does PF stand for on a GE microwave?

The PF error code on a GE microwave stands for Power Failure. If your home has been affected by a power outage or power surge, your GE microwave could display the PF error code.

How do I reset my GE microwave after a power outage?

To reset your Ge microwave after a power outage you should press the off or clear button. This should be enough to reset the system and clear the PF error code.

Can a power outage damage a microwave?

A power outage is unlikely to damage a microwave. The damage is likely to occur when the power is restored and there is a power surge. If the voltage of the returning power is too high it is called a power surge and this is when the microwave is likely to become damaged.

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