Inexpensive Gas Ranges - difficult math.
I have a sort of wordy question here, a dead range and a pretty poor history of choosing ranges.
I have a slightly wider than 30" opening for a range. It's currently occupied by a dead slide-in range but the opening runs all the way back to the backsplash. I have now had 3 slide-ins in this house in 13 years (yeah, I know you're laughing) and don't want another. It's a bad time for us financially to make a major purchase.
Fitting a normal range is an issue.
My counters are 36 7/8" tall to the surface. The backsplash is topped by a 3" wide shelf. The bottom of the shelf is at 46 3/8" from the floor. The backsplash and the shelf are covered with sheet stainless steel that is 10 feet long. The shelf can not be moved or changed without damaging the entire backsplash as there are pop rivets holding the steel to the underside of the shelf.
It looks to me like the choices are to to get a crappy slide-in- just about the same one that died or find a stand alone range with short back. I'm not considering buying a more expensive slide-in as they worked out well for me.
I most value how the burners work, followed by a good broiler and then a good oven. I am not power-mad - 15k power burners are just fine. I also can get along with most any size oven - true convection, fake convection and no convection. The most we can possibly spend is 2k on the stove+any installation issues.
tried to talk dh into a commercial 24" imperial (1.2k, dealer within a mile). When he heard the part about 30k burner btus, "No" echoed throughout the land. I can't say I blame him or actually disagree.
I have checked 3 used appliance places, craigslist and ebay - nothing.
So, dream stove is an nxr - 4 dual ring burners, broiler that works, no fancy electronics, no high heat self clean. Looks like it has a about 1/3 more btus on the oven burner, so maybe a faster preheat. It takes the whole 2k and a plumber in my locality. No changes to the backsplash.
Drop dead choice: bottom end whirlpool slide in for about 1.2k installed. Low power broiler, high heat self-clean, same single ring burners but I haven't be able to lay eyes on it, so there is fear that it will be much worse. But, also, no changes to backsplash.
The other two regular ranges that are interesting are the new whirlpool ice stand alone ranges and the Samsung FX710bgs. There are price differences between them all of course, but its a pretty narrow band between $855 up to 1200 for whirpool and $1069 for the samsung. The whirlpools have some interesting new oven features (low heat steam clean, rapid preheat) and the samsung has a single dual ring burner and three element convection. Plus a plumber call.
Either require that the backsplash (and shelf) be destroyed. It's a little more complicated that that because its built out from the wall and the shelf is also the window sill for two windows. Yada, yada, yada. I figure that as at least $500 worth of stuff but maybe up to 1k. And also pretty messy.
Partly because I can't actually try out any of them, I'm having some difficulty making a decision and would appreciate any thoughts.
1. Low end sears slide in. Hated just about everything about it. We bought it because the range that came with the house died in the first 30 days we lived here. It was uncleanable and I hated the burners - those were my first experience with sealed burners, plus I think all of them were like 6k or something. We used it for about 3 years and then a neighbor took it (even those we told them it wasn't very good). It lasted less than 2 years in their house before dying. At that time, they were made by whirpool.
2. Kitchenaid mid-range slide in. I loved those burners, the oven worked fine but the broiler didn't. Its main problem was the burners started to melt the porcelain or enamel off the grates (which would turn red hot); dripping off into the burner pans - forming little glass-looking balls with occasional sharp edges. They eventually gave us our money back on the condition that we never buy another of them.
3. GE Profile. Otherwise know as Piece of Crap - this made it to 7 years old. The oven sides chipped porcelain in the second year causing rust inside the oven cavity with the worst part preventing the racks from moving without using a fair amount of force. I can say that I hated everything about its operation. The coupe de grace was the oven igniter - its not so bad by itself, but the wiring behind it looked fairly toasted too. As a guestimate, repairs would run over $600.