Selecting the Right Appliances for You and Your Home

Choosing appliances can be a daunting task but it doesn’t have to be if you do your homework by brushing up on your appliance vocabulary. As with any successful project, it is all about planning.

The following is devised to be an overview of appliances, by category, to assist you in selecting the right ones for your style and budget. Be sure to read the items of note before heading off to your appliance retailer or the internet.

Cooktops and Ranges

Built for cooking (burners on the surface of the appliance) and baking, roasting and broiling (integral oven under the cooking surface with ranges/stoves), cooktops and ranges may have coil (electric), smooth top (electric) or sealed burner (gas) cooking surfaces.

Cooktops: Built into a kitchen countertop with the burner control on the surface, most cooktops are typically 24-36 inches wide and may use electricity (coil, electric-resistant or induction), natural gas or propane. Natural gas and induction are the most responsive and suited to avid cooks while electric coil is most budget-friendly and hardest to clean. Electric-resistant is easy to clean but less responsive compared to gas or induction. Natural gas and propane are less efficient than induction or radiant, taking up to twice as long to boil a pot of water.