Question about induction cooktops

Discussion in 'Cooking Equipment Reviews' started by rutledj, Oct 27, 2011.

  1. rutledj

    rutledj

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    I'm considering either a dual fuel range with a gas cooktop or an induction cooktop range. The thing I'm unclear of about the induction units is it appears you are limited to having one burner per side on high while the other burner on that same side must be set to a lower power setting. I guess you are only allowed to draw but so much power per side.

    Is this true for all induction cooktops (I'm talking general home ranges in the 2000-2500k range)?

    Does this limit you when cooking for a good number of people (like around the holidays)?

    Do they make units that do not have this limiting feature?

    Would gas be better in light of these limitations?

    Thanks,

    Rut
     
  2. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

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    It's an issue of how much current you can draw. There are higher voltage units available, but they cost more as you're seeing. And you might need some custom wiring to support them. Similarly, you might need a bigger run of gas pipe to support a gas ranger with all burners on high. Depends what you already have run.

    I don't think it's as limiting an issue as you're making it out to be though. Even for a holiday event, i can't think of needing to use all the burners on high at the same time. A big pot of water on one side, and a 12 inch skillet running a saute on the other. The smaller burners are probably at a simmer or very close there to.

    Because of the efficiency of induction. if you stagger your big current draws by a few minutes, you'll be fine. . And for the most part, that's the natural state of cooking.

    For about $60, you can get a plug in counter top induction unit that can give you that extra bit of cooking space you might need occasionally. It will max out that circuit on high so don't count on running a mixer or microwave while it's operating on high. However, for the short times your mixer or micro is running, it's not a big deal to turn the stand-alone induction burner down or off for a bit.
     
  3. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

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    To help you understand my point, gas stoves are about 30% effficient at transferring heat to a pan. Induction is around 90% efficient.

    So a 12,000 BTU big burner on a home gas stove transfers around 4000 BTU into the pan.

    An 1800 Watt induction burner transfers about 6000 BTU into the pan.

    You don't need the induction burner set as how to be as powerful as the gas, or you don't need it set at high as long until the water is boiling. giving you quick access to full power on a different burner.
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2011