Free standing vs slide-in ranges

pennyr26August 5, 2009

We have selected a free standing GE Profile gas range which has the digital read-outs on the (tall) back. However, I am also considering the slide-in model which leaves a nice wall space for an attractive tile design. What has been your experience with the slide-in model? Also which micro wave oven coordinates best with the GE Profile slide-in?

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Our appliances are sitting in the garage as I write, and we got a Maytag double-oven gas (not dual-fuel) freestanding range (it's got a skinny pizza-oven on top, and a large oven right below it. Jenn-Air makes one, and Sears does too). Above it we'll have the GE Profile microwave/convection/hood vent---both are in stainless and black.

We're doing a white kitchen, so we'll have subway tile behind it. My KD expressed a bit of concern about the back sticking up, instead of having a slide-in range. But it was the best alternative to having a gas cooktop on the island and double-ovens across the kitchen, so we stuck to our guns (and saved probably $2K on a downdraft and double ovens). They'll be installed in about two months. But I know what you mean, and I'll be eager to see what others post about this question. It seems like this whole re-do is a bunch of compromises!

    Bookmark   August 6, 2009 at 12:52AM
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I have the GE profile range 11 months now. Got it before the kitchen install started because it went on sale. I really love it and have had no problems. We have a hood over it. Better to keep the white cabinets not-greasy.

This was a very tough decision for me and I've second-guessed it eternally after the fact. The house came with an old GE profile hi-lo, and a VERY narrow kitchen. I got used to the double oven and really didn't want to lose it, but had NO wall space for wall-ovens. Other than tearing down all the walls and rearranging the first floor. We weren't into that extent of remodel.

The old GE Profile Hi-Lo was the ultimate oven/range in it's time. It had a smaller upper oven suspended above the range, like a microwave. Ours was 27 years old and still worked. So when GE Profile came out with the new double oven I went for it. Their little "pizza oven" on the top is the biggest one out there. We use it 90% of the time and I LOVE it. You can auto-clean it too w/o doing the bottom one! :) How cool is that?

BUT...I had noticed (even at my plebian level of decor) that slide-in ranges 'look nicer'. I debated for awhile but they don't come in the double oven and I really wanted that. This still irritates me. I too have subway tiles, and since the kitchen was small I got carera marble. Simple but nice.

After finding this forum (part-way through remodel) I of course saw EVERYONE ELSE has slide-ins! But virtually everyone else also has double WALL-OVENS. For those of us with smaller kitchens this just doesn't work. SO...have you looked at the real estate comps in your area? After I did (isn't it nice to be able to see inside so many houses these days? :D) I realized that free-standing ranges were still 'the norm' around me and no buyer was going to come in and walk out because there wasn't a slide-in range. That's one consolation.

That leaves friends and family. Fortunately, one of the first comments I've gotten out people seeing the new kitchen in many cases has been, "Is that a double-oven?!" Most people seem to wish they had one.

So it works well, doesn't hurt resale for me, and people compliment it. It's just about the only way to get a double-oven in a smaller kitchen. If you need it, you need it! While I consede on the superior looks of the slide-ins, I wouldn't give up my double-oven. :)

    Bookmark   August 6, 2009 at 8:20AM
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I have the electric Maytag Gemini range with the "double ovens". I LOVE it! It allows me to have two ovens in a smaller area.

I had a few decorative tiles placed in the backsplash right above the "high back" of the range to give it a little pizzazz.

I do agree that a slide in would have enabled me to do a more decorative back splash design, but I took the trade off to have two ovens instead.

It's all about what you like!


    Bookmark   August 6, 2009 at 9:38AM
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The pro-style ranges (e.g. Wolf, DCS, Bluestar, etc.) are free standing but don't have the high backsplash. They also don't have a second oven unless you get a 48" or larger model.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2009 at 10:13AM
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We had a free standing range before we redid our kitchen. I hated how the crumbs always fell in between the range and cabinets. We went with a slide in range for our new kitchen and it's much easier to keep clean. The trade-off is that slide-ins are more $$.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2009 at 10:23AM
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I'm so sorry! I read the first response that talked about double ovens and jumped into that as the issue. It WAS the main reason I choose a GE free-standing range. Looking back I see you don't mention that as a priority.

Hands down, if that isn't an issue get the slide in.

If no one here has the exact model you might try posting on the appliance forum for more input.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2009 at 1:45PM
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The controls on a slide in are within reach of little hands while a range is not. It's a consideration if you might have a concern about it.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2009 at 2:01PM
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I wanted a range so that my oven would be near the vent. With my oven across the kitchen from my vent now (remodel to begin in a few weeks), baked fish smell lingered in that area forever! I like the looks of a slide-in over a free standing. Electrolux makes a slide in with the two ovens like the others mentioned here, except that theirs is on the bottom. I'd have much preferred it on the top, but I got two ovens and a slide-in, so I compromised on that point. Oh, well, it will keep me limber, right?

    Bookmark   August 6, 2009 at 2:13PM
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I meant to say - The electrolux small "pizza" oven is on the bottom, and I expect I'll be using the small one more than the large one.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2009 at 4:33PM
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my viking came with a high backsplash. I got them to send me the short one that does not show after seeing it online. you should find out if there is another option for your range. the thought of spending all the money that i did on my backsplash to have it covered up was bugging me. here was mine with the taller backsplash:

and then with the shorted one:

    Bookmark   August 6, 2009 at 6:17PM
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Many of the under $2,000 slide in ranges have the controls on an angled area in front of the burners. This takes away valuable cooktop real estate. Only the higher end ranges seem to have the controls on the front. Unless you have a raised hood and decorative area under it I don't see a reason for a slide in. With a microwave over it at about 18" up from the counter a standard range works better and it also saves you from needing a stainless piece behind it, or constantly having to scrub the grout there.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2009 at 7:37PM
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I went from a free-standing style to a slide-in mostly due to looks, but also because I didn't like reaching over the pots to adjust the controls. Here's my observations:

Slide-ins stop spills om the sides, but free-standing ones stop spills in back.

Front controls are easier to reach, but they also result in more accidental control changes.

Mine is angled, but I don't notice any effective difference in cooking real estate. In fact I think I have more than my old free standing one. The angle also makes it really easy to operate the controls.

30" slide-in is not the same as 30" free standing. Make sure you have your stove before installing cabinets and counter tops. We didn't and now our range sticks out farther than it should.

Here's what it looks like as of now:
From Kitchen as of July 12 2009

(Obviously we're not done yet...)

I will have an OTR micro-hood (it arrived today!) and felt like the free-standing model would just make things look way too crowded and cramped. We'll be doing a piece of our granite in the space between, so no stainless steel or grout worries.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2009 at 10:56PM
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For me the double oven was the issue. I wanted a double oven range and could not find it in a slide-in. So I ordered a freestanding kenmore range - appliances aren't one of my splurges :) My kitchen is smallish and it was the only way to get two ovens. Otherwise I would have gotten a slide in because I think they do look better. And I am a little worried about reaching over the cooktop to adjust the heat.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2009 at 11:14PM
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We have a GE Profile slide-in and are very happy with it. In our small space, it gives a finished look.

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   August 7, 2009 at 1:48PM
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Something I learned here back in the day. The slide in and other ranges that are NOT free standing involve an extra installation fee of several hundred dollars, I think. Ask your contractor/installer. This is one of those surprise costs that no one tells you about. Being a frugal type, I got the free standing range.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2009 at 3:22PM
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One thing you may want to consider is the GE Cafe slide-in line. They are more professional style than the other GE slide-in ranges. There are also two ovens. Unfortunately, the secondary oven is in the drawer on the bottom of the unit, but it is there. The GE Cafe comes in all-electric, all-gas, and dual-fuel.

The gas and dual-fuel versions have five burners on the cooking surface (one is an oval "griddle" burner). Also, in the gas and dual-fuel models, the cooking surface is stainless steel which gives a really nice look.

GE categorizes these usually as freestanding ranges, because they go all the way to the wall and don't have a strip of countertop behind. The look, though, is like a slide-in, with front-mounted controls and low/no backsplash.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2009 at 6:12PM
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The other BIG difference between a free standing and slide in range is that free standing ranges have finished sides and don't need to be between cabinets - slide in ranges have unfinished sides and can only be mounted between cabinets.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2009 at 6:59PM
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Penny, I have had both styles in the past and was happy with their performance. For this reno we are going with a slide-in Jenn Air with downdraft ventilation.

My current Kitchen-Aid range has performed well and the smooth top is wonderful for clean up. The controls for the range are on the front of the unit which my wonderful DH and I thought would we best for me due to my lack of height. The depth of the control panel is 5'' - add in the oven handle and I am standing about 6.5'' from the front burners.

By the way, the controls on the slide-in did not seem to be located in a way that would hinder my ability to cook.

I suggest you go to your local appliance store and stand in front of both types of ranges and pretend you are cooking a meal. Take a couple of pieces of cookware with you if you need props. Don't forget to reach past the warm burners to clean up. Choose the style that works best for you.

I know you will enjoy preparing meals for your family in your new kitchen.


    Bookmark   August 7, 2009 at 7:14PM
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I have a GE profile drop-in range. It sits on top of my granite, sort of, and has wood cabinets beneath the oven. It doesn't touch the floor at all.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2009 at 9:05PM
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