Are you planning to update your kitchen or perhaps you’re building a new home? Remember great meals start in the kitchen, so choosing the right appliances is important.
Today, there are many options in deciding which cooking appliances to buy. Having a separate oven and cooktop can give you greater flexibility. You can install them anywhere you like, plus if you want a larger oven and a smaller cooktop (or the other way around) you have the choice. With cooktops you can also choose from gas or electric or induction. All have their benefits, but which one is going to best suit your needs? We can’t make that decision for you but we can help with some information about each one…
Benefits of a Gas Cooktop
Gas cooktops work by pressing the burner knob down and turning it. This releases the gas and ignites it with an electric current when you turn the switch. You can also light the burner with a match although this is not recommended. Heat is controlled by turning the knob which increases the flame. The higher the flame; the hotter the temperature.
• Provide instant heat and are good with heat control.
• You get a visual of the flame size when you’re setting the heat.
• You won’t be affected by any power outages when using gas.
• Gas cooktops come in a variety of configurations, so you can choose the style that suits your needs.
• All types of cookware can be used on gas cooktops.
• They are generally cheaper to run than traditional electric cooktops.
• Make sure the gas cooktop you purchase is fitted with a safety device that will shut off the gas valve immediately if the flame is ever put out accidentally.
• The surface of the cooktop can get hot as can the burner rings which you should be careful of.
• Make sure you have your gas supply checked regularly and serviced if required. This applies to all your gas appliances.
Benefits of an Electric Cooktop
Electric cooktops work by turning on the burner. When we do this a switch opens and sends an electrical current to the burner. This produces heat, which raises the temperature of the burner.
• They come in a variety of configurations, so you can choose the style that suits your needs.
• Electric cooktops are available in ceramic, toughened glass and enamel.
• They provide constant and even heat and are very effective in maintaining lower heat.
• No chance of the coil blowing out like there is with a gas cooktop.
• Electric cooktops can be easier to clean than gas as they have less elements.
• Cheaper to buy than induction cooktops.
• They usually cost less to install as there is no need to put in a gas line.
• Electric cooktops take longer to heat up and cool down meaning that temperature control is not as quick and simple as gas or induction cooktops.
• Electric cooktops can stay hot long after the heat has been turned off, which can be a safety hazard if you’re not careful.
• Make sure you choose pans with a flat base to ensure good contact with the surface and even heat distribution.
Benefits of an Induction Cooktop
Induction cooktops work by using induction heating to heat your cookware directly. An electric current flows through a copper coil in the cooktop which produces a magnetic field. This produces an electric current in the pot which heats the pot and therefore the food. So what does all this mean? It means that your food is cooked using the heat of the cookware, not the cooktop itself saving you energy and money.
• Works with a magnetic field which sits underneath the surface of the cooktop.
• You can adjust the cooking heat instantly allowing you to go from boiling to simmering in an instant.
• Touch controls allow a wide range of temperature control.
• The heat generated is consistent and even.
• The cooktop itself doesn’t heat up making it safer (however if you touch the spot where the pan has been directly after the pan has been removed it will be hot).
• Heat is transferred directly to the food itself, so it’s the pan that heats up not the cooktop.
• As the cooktop doesn’t heat up spills don’t burn on the surface making it easy to clean.
• Induction cooking keeps your kitchen cooler because there is less wasted heat.
• Induction cooktops are more energy efficient because there is less heat lost in the cooking process.
• You can only use magnetic based cookware such as cast iron or magnetic stainless steel pots and pans – a good tip is to try sticking a magnet to the base of your pan. If it sticks, your pan should work on an induction cooktop.
• Pans should have a flat bottom to make full contact with the surface.
• Aluminium pans will not work on induction cooktops.
• Induction cooktops can be more expensive than traditional electric or gas cooktops.
• Although usually quite tough, you still need to be careful that you don’t scratch or damage the smooth glass or ceramic surface.
You’ll find there are a lot of choices out there. So whether you choose a gas, electric or an induction cooktop The Good Guys has a huge range to suit every need. One thing we always recommend is that you have a licensed tradesperson install your new cooktop. It’s safer, they know what they’re doing and there’s less risk of damage to your brand new appliance, your home or yourself!