Induction questions

KimSigApril 15, 2013

Just staring getting bids for our kitchen remodel. We are replacing all appliances , I know I want a induction cook top, the more I read the more confused I get! I am not a gourmet cook, just a average everyday cook. Do I really need a 36 inch, is there that much difference between it and a 30 inch one? I have lived with 4 coil burners my whole life! Our budget is modest, would like to stay around 2000 for the cooktop, please help me narrow my choices through the experiences of those already using one! Thanks soo much!

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I haven't bought mine yet, but I'm getting the JA 36". Here are the features that sold me:

1) It's a Bosch, and I have had great luck with Bosch appliances in the past, though have not had their cooktops.

2) I'm an avid cook and need a 36". It's the difference between 4 and 5 hobs, generally speaking, for a 30 vs a 36 inch.

3) Love, love, love the hob configuration on the JA. Positioned and all sized well, AND the smaller hobs on both right and left sides have a bridge features that allows you to use a longer pan or griddle over both hobs to use as one. Very flexible and usable, indeed.

4) It looks beautiful. The Miele has a red tint to it I don't like, and you can see the coiling underneath the plate. The KA has a weird print on it. The Wolf - well, to me, they do ovens, I don't know what value they bring to the table to justify their price point for induction. The one I really wanted was the Thermador that is hob-less - the induction technology is totally different than the rest of them, and it allows you to set your pot anywhere on the cooktop, and it's auto-detected. That one, however, is $5K. Ouch.

5) Total electric control panel (yes, most have this), but also has timers for each hob, as well as a 'master off switch' that will shut the whole thing down at once, if need be. Not all of the other brands offer this.

MSRP is $2,099.


    Bookmark   April 15, 2013 at 10:17PM
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Fori is not pleased

If 4 burners have always been enough and you don't wish you had more, then you'll be perfectly happy with a 30" cooktop.

I've gone from 30" electric to 30" gas to 30" induction to 36" induction and am back to 30" electric. I don't miss the extra burner but I sure do miss the induction.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2013 at 10:55PM
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Folks get 36" induction cooktops for essentially three different kinds of reasons:

(a) some want space to spread out even though they might not want to use all of the burners frequently, which is same reason a lot of people get other kinds of 36" stoves and cooktops;

(b) some folks really need five or six burners at a time; and

(c) some folks get them simply because they think a 36" unit is more "impressive."

So, if these situations don't apply to you, then, as fori says, do not worry.

I strongly suggest, however, that you take some pans to a display and set them out to see how the burner spacing and layout works for you. If you can't get to a display (or would be embarassed to do so), at least try making a fullsize mock-up of the cooktops you are considering (maybe draw the burner circles on newspapers.) Different burner arrangements work differently for different folks.

Also, you don't need to spend $2k as there are numbers of very decent 30" induction cooktops for less. IIRC, LG even has a 30"model that allows bridging of two elements with a pancake griddle, and it has received some favorable reviews. GE, Bosch and Electrolux all have sub-$1800 units which have received pretty favorable reviews.

This post was edited by JWVideo on Tue, Apr 16, 13 at 3:15

    Bookmark   April 16, 2013 at 3:13AM
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We have a 30" induction because I rarely ever need a fifth burner, maybe twice in 19 years, and the extra 6" of real estate on my counter are valuable for work space.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2013 at 8:08AM
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That's a good point that Cavimum makes about the counterspace you'll give up for a bigger cooktop. To take that one step further, consider the size of your kitchen. I have a very large one as part of a bigger great room with vaulted ceilings. A smaller cooktop would simply look out of place, even if I never use all 5 hobs at once on my 36" cooktop. I think the counterspace, but overall size of the kitchen, should both be considered. You definitely select appliances for their functionality and performance, but don't de-emphasize the emotional needs you need to fulfill with design. Appliances are like shoes and handbags in a way - you need to feel good about the way they make you feel. ;-)

This post was edited by acgummad on Tue, Apr 16, 13 at 10:39

    Bookmark   April 16, 2013 at 10:38AM
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There is another aspect that has not been mentioned.

If space permits. I'd go with a 36" unit and here is why. You may not need a 5th burner but if the 30" cooktop has back burners right behind the front ones (not at an angle, I mean), then the back burner becomes pretty much useless when using a large (11"-13") pan on the front burner because the only thing you could fit on the back burner would be a small saucepan.

I have gotten by with 30" units but I always hated that aspect. If that is not a problem for you, then there is nothing "wrong" with a 30" one.

It is not a big deal for me either as I need more than 2 burners only when I am cooking for a week or for a crowd. I have a portable induction unit as the 5th burner for those occasions. You can get one for ~$80 on Amazon, so it is a good cost and space saver.


    Bookmark   April 16, 2013 at 12:07PM
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If $$ are an issue - go with the 30 inch. If not, go with the 36 inch - I sometimes put a "silpat" mat on top of mine and can use it to prep as well as cook .
I also have a single burner but haven't used it since reno.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2013 at 7:04PM
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Another aspect: some 36 inch cooktops have a larger hob than the 30 inch cooktops. So if you need the extra large hob, 36 inch may be the way to go.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 8:48PM
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Fori is not pleased

Also, the countertop isn't wasted if you go bigger--an induction cooktop makes a perfectly fine work surface (unless you're cooking on it of course). I'd use one hob for chopping the onions (yes, on a cutting board!) to dump in the pan on the next hob.

I like chopping onions under a hood.

Making sure the layout works for you is a good idea.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 9:59PM
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Agree with Fori. In case of induction, the larger cooking surface also provides a additional prep surface or a landing spot for hot pots etc. I would just be guided by the price. If you find a 36in floor model for cheaper than 30in,I would just get it. I did. One consideration is the size of hood does go up especially if you stick to the wisdom of having the hood be 6in larger than the cooktop width.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2013 at 1:12AM
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