The gas hob is the favorite of all chefs and culinary specialists from Yulia Vysotskaya to Gordon Ramsay. There are at least 3 reasons why it is better than an electric stove:
- Firstly, it does not increase the electricity bill, and gas is quite inexpensive. By the way, the electric hob is one of the biggest “consumers” of energy in the house.
- Instant on and off heating, as well as a sensitive reaction to its adjustment, make the gas stove ideal for solving all culinary tasks: boiling, stewing, languishing, frying, etc.
- There is a widespread opinion that food cooked on a gas fire is healthier and tastier than food cooked on an electric or microwave oven, since this heating source is the most natural and close to the ideal — an open fire.
In this article, we will tell you how to choose the perfect built-in gas hob: efficient, safe, beautiful and easy to clean.
Some more useful information
- The connection of the gas hob must be carried out by specialists from the city gas service, and not by a third party.
- Those who live outside the city, where sometimes there are interruptions in the supply of gas or electricity, should pay attention to the combined hobs. In them, one half of the burners is gas, and the other is electric.
- Due to open flames, the gas hob is not compatible with the backsplash made of MDF and plastic. However, the problem is easily solved by installing a transparent glass screen in the area of the stove.
- When choosing a gas panel, take care of a sufficiently powerful hood.
- Keep in mind that the gas hob requires a door in the entryway (although it doesn’t have to be closed). If you want to combine the kitchen with the living room / hallway, then the gas stove will have to be changed to an electric one. This is not so easy to do, but it is possible: you will need to obtain official permission, develop a project and replace the electrical wiring. Unfortunately, in old houses, the power grids are weak, so the alteration is often not coordinated.
Finally, we suggest watching a video with tips on choosing a gas hob from the user.
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How to choose a hob: we help you decide on the criteria
The hob is a household appliance, the choice of which will inevitably have to be faced by anyone who has refused to buy a free-standing stove. There may be several reasons for this decision. For example, some may not need an oven at all — why waste extra money and precious space in the kitchen? Others want to save space on the work surface by reducing the number of burners. Still others, on the contrary, are going to cook a lot and often and prefer to be sure that there is always room for an additional pan on the panel … In general, choosing two separate appliances (oven plus hob) instead of one combined (stove) is always an additional the ability to make sure you buy exactly what you need. How to choose a hob and what features of this household appliance should you pay attention to first of all? Let’s figure it out.
gas or electricity
Of course, the first thing you have to decide when choosing a hob is its type. Panels are gas, electric or combined — having both gas and electric burners.
In most cases, the choice is obvious: in the presence of a gas pipeline, a gas panel is usually preferred, in its absence, an electric one. Combined panels can most often be found where interruptions in the supply of gas or electricity are possible.
Built-in gas hob Smeg PV675CNX with an enlarged burner in the center
It should be noted that gas hobs are often equipped with interchangeable nozzles for conversion to bottled gas. Well, if they are not included in the kit, then in some cases such nozzles can be purchased separately by contacting a service center. One way or another, if the panel is purchased, for example, for a summer residence where gas cylinders are actively used, this nuance must be paid attention to in advance.
Electric hobs, in turn, can be divided into those that use burners with traditional heating, and induction — heating the dishes directly, and not the burner. Each of these options has its pros and cons.
Gas hobs will be cheaper on average. They will allow you to instantly start or stop the heating process. Adjusting the intensity of gas combustion will allow you to quickly and easily adjust the power of the burner and visually control the cooking process. The disadvantages here are also obvious: the presence of an open flame, not too high efficiency (the panel will heat the air in the room during operation), as well as a slightly more complicated maintenance.
Electric panels with cast-iron heating elements today can only be found in cottages or in change houses. In apartments, models with conventional spiral heating elements covered with glass-ceramic are usually used. Such a panel turns out to be flat, and therefore, there are almost no places where dirt can accumulate.
A hob with an open heating element today can only be found in the country
Such panels will be slightly more expensive than gas ones. They are easy to care for and allow you to quickly heat the dishes to the desired temperature. True, it will not work to stop heating instantly, so you will have to get used to the features of the panel for some time. When installing such a panel, it may be necessary to connect an additional high-power electrical cable.
Induction electric panels differ from traditional ones in that the heat from the heating element is transferred directly to the bottom of the cookware, and not to the glass-ceramic surface. Such panels have the best efficiency, but will require flat-bottomed dishes made of magnetic metal (however, special metal “pancakes”-gaskets are allowed).
When choosing an induction hob, pay special attention to the size of the heating element. The fact is that it may turn out to be smaller than the zone drawn on the glass-ceramic coating. And this, in turn, can lead to deformation of dishes designed to work at high temperatures: if only the central part of a large frying pan heats up, then this will not benefit either the uniformity of the food frying or the pan itself. Of the advantages of induction panels, it is also worth noting the fact that such a heating element will not be able to work without installed dishes. And therefore, forgetting to turn off the stove simply will not work. Yes, and the escaped milk on the induction panel will not burn — after all, it is not the glass-ceramic that is heated, but the dishes themselves. But ordinary glass-ceramics not only get very hot, but also cool for a long time, so that a hot surface can be mistakenly confused with a cold one.
Combined panels such as Maunfeld MEHS.64.98 S will allow you to cook on gas and electricity
When choosing an electrical panel, you should also pay attention to the type of heating element. They are divided into rapid, halogen and Hi-Light burners. Rapid burners are the simplest and cheapest of those that can be found in a glass ceramic hob. In fact, they are a heating coil that generates heat when electricity is supplied. Such burners heat up much faster than outdated “pancakes”. Halogen burners are considered more efficient because, in addition to the heating coil, they have a powerful halogen lamp that glows, releasing a large amount of heat. In Hi-Light burners, heating is even more efficient than in halogen ones — they use a tape-type heater.
Panel dimensions, number of burners and their type
The second obvious parameter that immediately catches your eye is the dimensions of the hob. The vast majority of modern models are suitable for embedding in standard countertops with a depth of 60 centimeters. But the width of the panel can vary quite significantly: it depends on the number of burners, the number of which for household models can vary from 1 to 7. The standard is 4 burners and 60 centimeters wide. Those who want to save space usually choose the option with two burners (width — up to 30 cm). Those who are going to cook actively and want to get more burners, choose options with 5 or 6 burners, which will cause the width of the panel to increase to 70–90 cm. At this stage, it does not hurt to think about buying an appropriately sized hood: if the width of the panel is more than 60 cm, then the hood is better to choose not a standard one, but an enlarged one.
One burner (like the VG-415 panel) is a solution for lovers of minimalism. This area will easily fit two burners
Before choosing a freestanding hob or built-in model, it is worth considering the typical usage scenarios of the appliance. The most popular request is the presence of a large two- or three-circuit burner, using which it is possible to select the heating area in accordance with the diameter of the cookware. Of the gas models, burners with a double or triple row of flames are popular, which allows for fast and uniform heating and is indispensable for situations where fast processing of products at high temperatures is required. The presence of an oval heating zone is suitable for those who like to cook in elongated dishes (ducklings, fritters, etc.). Some models have burners with increased power or special wok-burners for cooking in a round deep concave frying pan or a cauldron. If finances allow, take a surface with one powerful burner (electric high power or gas with a double flame). All other frills — only if you really understand why you need it.
It is worth noting that manufacturers are currently actively experimenting with various solutions to expand the functionality of burners. You can find induction burners that automatically adjust to the size of the installed dishes, and even hobs consisting of one large burner (the dishes can be placed on it in any place), like the Miele KM 6395 FlexTouch. Some hobs can combine two standard burners into one large one (Gorenje IS 677 USC).
Panel surface and appearance
Not only its appearance, but also the ease of maintenance depends on what materials are used in the manufacture of the hob: after all, even with the most careful operation, the surface will have to be cleaned from dirt and splashes from time to time.
The most budget coating is considered ordinary enamel. It requires careful care, as it is easy to scratch or chip. But enamel surfaces can be of different colors.
A more reliable and practical (yet inexpensive) solution is stainless steel cladding. It is more difficult to damage, but on such a surface traces of dirt and even ordinary fingerprints will be more visible.
The Siemens EX675LXC1E panel allows you to place dishes anywhere in the cooking zone
The most easy to care for will be models made of tempered glass. They will look the most stylish and fit into the design of any kitchen without any problems. Glass ceramic heats up quickly and cools down quickly. The boundaries of heating are clearly limited, outside the heated zone, the surface of the hob remains cold. Glass-ceramic electric hobs are quite economical, their main weak point is their increased fragility. Dropping heavy objects on them is definitely not worth it, but even small point impacts (when a not too heavy, but sharp object falls) can cause a chip. You also need to ensure that cold water does not get on the hot surface. The bottom of the cookware used must be perfectly flat, and its diameter must not exceed the diameter of the heating zone.
The Siemens ET875LMP1D glass-ceramic hob with an expandable heating zone allows the use of dishes of various shapes
Glass-ceramic coatings can be made in different colors. In addition, labels and pictograms are often applied to them, simplifying the use of the panel. In general, there are no restrictions for the designer.
Hobs can be framed with a metal profile (frame) or have beveled edges. Framed panels will be somewhat more difficult to clean — it will be more difficult to brush off crumbs from them, and grease and dirt will inevitably get into the cracks. On the other hand, such a frame will not allow liquid to drain onto the floor or countertop.
Management and additional functions
Switches for controlling burners can be mechanical rotary or electronic. Inexpensive hobs usually have rotary switches — ordinary rotary knobs. They can almost always be found at gas panels. Recessed switches protect the panel from accidental activation (they can only be used when extended).
Electronic (in particular, touch) switches open up additional features and access to advanced functions (such panels often have digital displays and / or LED indicators).
Gas panels have practically no advanced functions. The only thing worth mentioning here is the presence of electric ignition (automatic or semi-automatic, triggered by pressing a special button), as well as a gas control system that turns off the gas supply if the fire goes out for some reason.
As for the electrical panels, then the additional possibilities will be much wider. We will list the most popular functions, but we will not claim to be complete in this list.
- Timer for each burner — allows you to set the on time (or, conversely, the off time) for each of the burners.
- Residual heat indicator — a special LED will warn you that the burner has not had time to cool down and you can accidentally burn yourself about it.
- Auto shutdown in case of overheating — the name speaks for itself.
- Automatic boil — a function that brings the contents of the dishes to a boil at maximum power, and then reduces the heat.
- Numerous auto programs — will allow you to cook simple dishes or select the appropriate temperature automatically (sometimes the panel will even allow you to memorize your own program).
- Child lock — Button lock function.
- A short pause — switching all burners to a temporary keep warm mode (will give the cook time to look into the recipe book or wipe the surface from contamination).
Design solutions (for example, Franke FHNE COR 4 3G) can look quite unexpected
Speaking about management, it will not be superfluous to recall the so-called “dependent” panels. They are sold complete with an oven and have one control system with it, which is usually located on the front panel of the oven. This solution allows you to buy two devices made in the same design. Yes, and such a “double” purchase will cost a little cheaper. But in the event of a breakdown, both devices will fail at once. Most of the hobs on the market are independent models. They have their own control system, their performance does not depend on other kitchen devices.
Summarizing the above, it is easy to determine the sequence of decisions that will have to be made when choosing a hob.
In the beginning, you need to answer basic questions: are you going to use gas or electricity (or maybe both), whether you prefer an embedded or independent model, which type of control you prefer. The second point is counting the number of required burners and deciding on the need for non-standard burners — for example, for a wok pan. Then it is worth deciding on the materials. At the same stage, the design issue will be automatically resolved — after all, it depends on the surface material whether the selected hob will fit into your kitchen set or not.
Finally, the matter is small. It remains to choose the manufacturer (in accordance with their own ideas about the advantages and disadvantages of certain brands) and a specific model. And, of course, it doesn’t hurt to consult a specialist before buying — at least to make sure that you haven’t missed anything.
The surface coating material will become one of the important parameters when deciding how to choose the most optimal cooking appliance. It is on this that the appearance of the entire product, the complexity of care, performance, price will depend.
Before diving into the nuances, let’s explain why the stove should be gas. Before buying, this question will undoubtedly pop up and make you think. The advantages of a gas device are much more significant than electric stoves, Let’s explain more specifically:
- significant advantage is price. It will be 15–20 percent lower than that of an electric stove. In today’s unstable situation with the economy, you will agree that this is a weighty argument;
- economy. An electric stove will be the most energy-intensive appliance in your home, unlike a gas stove, which will save money on gas consumption without affecting the amount of energy consumed in an apartment or house;
- ease of use. Everyone has long been accustomed to using these plates and is well versed in this. Adjusting the heating of the dish is very convenient, those who have used an electric device are aware of this difference;
- no dependence on the availability of power supply. If the electricity goes out, and you have an electric stove, then you will have to sit not only in the dark, but also hungry. What if there is a small child in the family? Think seriously about this;
- cooking speed. The temperature of the fire will always be higher than the temperature of the heated elements. This helps, for example, in the morning, when you are late for work and breakfast needs to be prepared as quickly as possible;
- taste of food. You can often hear that food cooked on an open fire tastes better. Moreover, in all ages, people cooked food on fire, to some extent, this is inherent in us at the genetic level, and there is no reason to refuse this in our time.
Now we will discuss the rules that must be observed when choosing your “nurse”. When you have decided on the purchase of a gas device, you need to know the intricacies of choosing the optimal model.
Burner. What to look for when choosing
The burner for the stove can be standard or have several rows of gas supply. The most optimal would be a burner with three rows of gas supply, it would be useful if such a burner is present on your panel. A large pot will boil in a few minutes.
A good solution for your stove is to have burners with many holes that release the flame, this helps to evenly heat the dishes and increase the efficiency of the hob. Another newfangled solution is the wok burner, which looks like a powerful burner with two or three levels of gas supply and a stand for a wok pan. It is also suitable for ordinary cooking in a cauldron, pressure cooker or roaster.
Grilling burner — looks like a grill, with burners installed under it. It is universal for frying meat, fish, vegetables, mushrooms. By the way, the location of the burners on the stove may not be standard, but in the form of a diamond, for example. In this case, the working surface of the kitchen is less prone to contamination and the operation of the hood will improve slightly, but this solution is not very practical and convenient.
Which manufacturer to choose
The range of hobs is so huge that it is easy to get confused in the names of brands and brands. However, this market has its own leaders who have long established themselves with durable work and quality service. Among the best manufacturers of gas hobs, five companies can be distinguished.
- Slovenian brand, whose equipment is very popular. Mostly produced glass-ceramic hobs. The main bet is made on the model of the combined type: gas and electric, induction, Hi-Light option. Gorenie products can be recognized by their original design, which is developed in the company’s own center. Interestingly, hobs are produced in different price segments: both budget and premium.
- De’Longhi. An Italian company that produces models of the middle price category. The range of hobs includes gas and induction models. Almost all gas panels are equipped with wear-resistant cast-iron grates, resistant to high temperatures. Also, most appliances have wok burners with a triple row of flames.
- Kuppersberg. German brand engaged in the production of various types of kitchen appliances. Each product has an original design. For example, a lot of retro-style appliances. In terms of functionality, Kuppersberg hobs are undisputed leaders: there is a security system thought out to the smallest detail and additional useful features.
- GEFEST. Belarusian company engaged in the production of large household appliances in the budget segment. Initially, the main products of the company were gas stoves, but in recent years, the production of hobs has been adjusted. Note that the characteristics of their devices are not much inferior to expensive analogues.
- Bosch. This German corporation needs no introduction. Hobs from Bosch regularly get into the ratings of the best and are in high demand among buyers. The reason is high-quality assembly, long-term service, uniform heating technology for dishes of any shape and size.
Top brands offer exclusives, where a spectacular, innovative design is combined with a decent set of options that are not available in state employees.
Smeg SR775RA — control aesthetics
The hob is designed by Italian designers and is offered in a classic style. A spectacular copper shade will allow you to install it in a kitchen set in a classic style, country, Provence. The latest technology is implemented in the model.
The 70 cm wide model is equipped with five burners and is designed for cooking for a large family.
- non-standard color;
- cast iron grates that are easy to clean;
- gas control;
- auto ignition.
- chrome-plated burner rims;
- non-standard arrangement of functional cooking zones;
- uncomfortable handles.
NEFF T29TA79N0 — top design
Gas stove with heat-resistant glass-ceramic surface. Fire regulation is carried out using Flame Select technology.
Flame Select, which allows you to adjust the flame at 9 levels. Long cast-iron grates provide stability and ease of cooking.
NEFF T29TA79N0 has a premium design, non-standard arrangement of burners.
The main double-circuit burner is placed in a separate zone, which allows you to conveniently install the WOK pan, while fully using the remaining sources of fire.
- fast heating;
- functional design;
- glass-ceramic surface;
- seven-segment display;
- indication of residual heat of burners;
- premium materials.
- when washing, stains remain on the surface.
How to properly care for a glass ceramic surface?
If we compare such two materials as enamel and glass-ceramic, then in the first case it is undoubtedly easier to care for the product. To restore order on an enameled plate, just walk with a damp sponge. With stronger and more corrosive stains, you can rub it with a brush. The surface will not be damaged and after a few minutes it will again be clean and smooth.
But glass ceramics needs careful and careful cleaning. It is also worth remembering that you will have to remove not only traces of cooking, but also from fingers, splashes of water or simple dust. In general, it is believed that this material is more easily soiled than enamel. Therefore, in order to bring this household appliance into an ideal form, the following rules must be observed:
- you can not use various sponges and rags that are made from coarse fabrics and materials;
- you can clean the surface only with a special cloth, which is intended only for glasses;
- if pieces of food or some kind of dirt remain on the stove, then it is better to wipe it off with a special scraper;
- can only be washed with glass ceramic cleaner;
- do not use any powders that have a dry form during the cleaning process.
It is also worth remembering that household appliances made of this material are very fragile, so it is better not to hang cabinets and other kitchen utensils above it. This will minimize the risk of any object falling onto the hob surface.
The metal surface is perfect for modern interiors, it is able to serve for a long time. Additional advantages will be the normal tolerance of temperature changes, undemanding care, the complexity of deformation. Stainless steel coating will become average in price and quality.
Among the disadvantages of stainless steel note the need for constant cleaning. On the glossy surface, there are excellent views of fingerprints, food debris, water droplets. The polished surface is very skeptical of cleaning powders.
Selection of gas stoves by size
Having figured out how to choose a gas stove for the kitchen by type, you need to decide on the size. According to the standard, all plates have a height of 85 cm. The depth varies from 50 to 60 cm. You need to think about the width. Typically, kitchen appliances for cooking are produced 50–60 cm wide.
When choosing the size of the oven, the parameters of the kitchen are taken into account. They try to make a small kitchenette as functional and ergonomic as possible. In addition to the stove, you need to find a place for other household appliances. Microwave, dishwasher take up space. Therefore, size matters.
A small family of two or three people can purchase a stove 30 cm wide. If the family is large and the size of the kitchen allows, they buy appliances from 90 to 120 cm wide. The wider the stove, the more burners it has.
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This coating material can only be used for gas stoves. In terms of performance, tempered glass can be compared to glass-ceramic, but it will become a more durable coating. The variety of glass colors overtakes even enamel.
The disadvantages will be dislike for abrasives and the price of the coating.
Additional functions of the gas panel for the kitchen
A good advantage in choosing a hob is the presence of a gas supply control function and auto ignition. The gas control is a thermoelectric system that stops the flow of gas if the burner goes out. This system is autonomous and does not depend on the availability of electricity. But this function also has disadvantages: gas supply over time can take longer than necessary. This feature can be disabled if you do not need it.
Almost all gas-fired hobs are equipped with an auto-ignition button. Pieza can be automatic or semi-automatic.
The function of protection against curious children’s hands will be a necessary solution in families with small children. Pressing the button blocks access to gas on all burners.