As the central component in most kitchens, the range combines two of the most important cooking implements – the stove and the oven. While you don’t have to buy those two in one piece, choosing to do so has its benefits. Ranges usually cost less than the oven and the cooktop separately, and you only have to deal with one installation. However, buying a combined appliance means you need to make double considerations when choosing the right one for your kitchen. Let this list of features be your walkthrough guide to a host of ranges offered today.
Gas ranges are preferred by many professional chefs and amateurs alike because they offer a level of stovetop precision that electric ranges haven’t yet managed to achieve. Operating the burner lets you choose between levels of heat in an instant. In terms of energy use, gas is more cost-effective than electric power, so with this type of range, you are going to cut down on your utility bills.
Since the introduction of smooth-top stoves, the popularity of electric ranges has skyrocketed. They are easier to clean and more aesthetically pleasing than gas ranges, not to mention they don’t require a gas hookup in the kitchen. The same way experienced chefs prefer gas stoves for the precision of the cooktop, experienced bakers prefer electric ovens which, due to more even electric heating, deliver superior baked goods.
Duel fuel types
For those who want the precision of a gas stovetop with the even baking capabilities of an electric oven, a dual fuel range is the right choice. Keep in mind that they usually cost a bit more than any of the single-fuel range types, but for homeowners who take great pride in their cooking and baking, the difference might justify the cost.
When it comes to ease of installation, a freestanding range is an excellent option. Available in gas, electric or dual-fuel configuration and packed with advanced features such as convection ovens and sealed stovetops, modern freestanding ranges are the flagships of truly reliable brands. For instance, a master of evolving design, every new Bertazzoni kitchen range integrates seamlessly with other appliances of the same brand, as well as kitchen cabinets and countertops.
Slide-in ranges have every benefit of looking like custom built-in ranges, while they are actually much easier to install. Their smooth and clean look is achieved by the absence of the backguard and controls that are located in the front. Since there’s no space left between the range top and the counter, there’s no way for drips and crumbs to get in between.
Not unlike slide-in ranges, drop-in ranges have unfinished sides and wide stovetops that ensure there’s no space between the range and the counter. This design never actually touches the floor, but instead sits on top of the cabinet baseboard. It looks more like a built-in range, but it’s harder to install than a slide-in. This type of ranges seems to be losing popularity, since there are not as many options today as there were before.
Factor to consider – size
For most consumers, the typical 30” range with 4 or 5 burners will be enough, while those living in smaller spaces may need a smaller one that fits into their kitchen more easily. Make sure you have a space for it, and, unless you’re ready for extra remodelling costs, stick to the size of the older range that you’re replacing. If you’re looking to do a kitchen remodel, include the size and position of the new range into the equation early on.
As already mentioned, different types of ranges are considered better for cooking different things, so what type of range you’ll get, or whether a dual fuel model is worth the cost, also depends on what you cook the most often. Also, many ranges will have different cooking settings and stovetops with burners devoted to different levels of heat. Some electric cooktops will also have an option for keeping your dish warm once cooked without burning it.
When you take all the given features into account, your choice seems to get complicated. On the other hand, with so many options to choose from, now consumers can easily make the right choice that fits their current setup. Quality kitchen ranges tend to get expensive, but a good one is not only an easy-to-use appliance that will serve you in years to come, but also an attractive centrepiece of your kitchen.