Our guide to buying a range cooker
Range cooker buyers guide
If the kitchen is the heart of the home, then what makes it beat for many people is having a range oven as the centerpiece. Range cookers not only bring a touch of tradition and style to a kitchen, but also make life much easier with their large capacity ovens, spacious hobs, and renowned cooking efficiency. Ideal for larger families or if you enjoy hosting for lots of people.
Different models available
Perfect for catering for a family and ideal for gourmet cooks, Knees stocks a variety of free-standing range ovens. We have different models of range cookers available from the best-known brands. Choose from energy-efficient electric induction range ovens and cookers of various sizes from top makers like Belling, Rangemaster, Smeg, Stoves, Fisher & Paykel, Falcon, and Ilve. Perhaps you would prefer a dual fuel range cooker, with gas hob and electric oven, available in a vast array of sizes and styles from farmhouse and country cottage classic cookers to sleek contemporary cookers in stainless steel and a selection of colours.
Unlike the old-fashioned ranges, modern range ovens are equipped with the latest technology which makes them fully programmable, easy to clean, and A-rated for the best energy efficiency. Depending on the model, the range cookers include features like a slow cooking oven, a removable grill, and a wok burner. Some models have a ceramic glass surface hob which many prefer because they make for easy cleaning.
Things to consider when buying a range cooker
Range ovens typically come in 90, 100 and 110cm (although 60cm and 120cm & 150cm are available). The wider you go the more cooking space you have both on top and underneath. A 110cm range is an impressive size which will function as the focal point of your kitchen and will usually give you six or seven gas burners or induction rings. At this size, two ovens and a separate grill would be the norm. Often one oven is fan oven and the other a multifunction. If you love cooking, have a large family (and kitchen), and love entertaining, thinking big may your best option. However, if you are unsure whether you will use all that cooking space, you might be best to go for a more modest size. A 90cm range will still give you five burners and two ovens of a respectable size. Plus, there can be quite a difference in price for that extra 20cm.
Please also bear in mind access to your property as range cookers are incredibly heavy, bulky products that require room to be put in place & connected.
The main choice is an electric induction or dual fuel. Many people feel safer with the latter – it combines the responsiveness and familiarity of a gas hob with the speed and efficiency of an electric oven. However, induction cooking is becoming a popular choice. It’s incredibly fast, and highly controllable, making it energy efficient and giving you precise control over your cooking. What’s more, the smooth surface of the hob looks fabulous and is incredibly easy to clean – a quick wipe will do it, no need to scrub heavy pan supports. Options for electric ovens include conventional, fan, and multifunction, depending on the specific brand and model.
With dual fuel or gas range cookers, it’s worth a thought about what type of gas you have in your property. Is it mains natural or LPG? You will need a specialist qualified installer for either but with LPG they can be hard to find LPG – Liquefied Petroleum Gas (Bottled Gas).
Once the sole preserve of the country farmhouse kitchen, range ovens can now be found in the most modern of homes and come in a whole array of styles and colours, from traditional cream to china blue. The curvy lines and softer colours of the Rangemaster Classic will look right at home in a period house or country cottage whereas the sleeker lines of the Stoves Richmond in Jalapeno red will give a more contemporary style kitchen the wow factor.
Buying a range oven is a major investment and there can be a wide range of prices, which reflects the different levels of technology involved and the added extras and features. Few will fail to appreciate a self-cleaning function and telescopic shelves but do you really need some of the less common functions? Our knowledgeable and experienced staff can help you understand exactly what you are getting for your money. And, make sure you keep an eye out for our promotions and offers.
Key features to look out for
Most electric or dual-fuel range cookers have at least one oven with a rotating fan in it to help distribute the temperature evenly. If you are an avid baker you may want more space for the fan oven section.
Some higher end range cookers may offer pyrolytic self-cleaning programmes to help keep your oven clean. The oven has a function which heats it to 400 degrees which burns off any spillages. This won’t clean the oven completely but will make it alot easier for you.
Some range cookers have a rack in the door of the oven so that when you open the door the tray swings out with it. This means you don’t have to reach into the oven when basting meat or vegetables and don’t have to carry the whole tryout each time.
Slide out grills & shelves
Making life easier & safer is key and have slide-out grills and shelves are a useful extra in some models available in brands like Rangemaster.
Wok burner support
Some range cookers have a section allocated for high-temperature cooking that’s perfect for cooking stir fry’s or quickly boiling a pan of water.
Did you know?
If you are shopping for a range oven in West Wiltshire, including Warminster, Westbury, Trowbridge, Melksham, or Bradford on Avon, or if you are looking for a range cooker in Bath or Frome, Malmesbury, Knees will be happy to deliver the range oven of your choice for a set charge. We also offer a range of installation services and for a small fee can remove and recycle old appliances. You can view our range ovens online or visit our shops in Trowbridge or Malmesbury and get expert advice from our friendly staff.
For more information on our delivery service click here.