Induction hobs have taken domestic and professional kitchens by storm. They’re said to be better than the more traditional electric and gas hobs. However, seeing how expensive they can be, you may wonder if induction hobs are a worthy investment.
Induction hobs are worth buying if you wish to improve your kitchen and cooking experience. They may be pricier, but they’re also more energy-efficient and safer than electric and gas hobs. Plus, induction hobs also heat up faster and adjust to temperature changes more easily.
That said, there are various factors to consider before making the switch to an induction hob. In this article, we will discuss what induction hobs are, the pros and cons of using them and whether they are worth the money.
Are Induction Hobs Worth It?
Induction hobs are worth it for most people looking to upgrade their kitchen and preserve energy. However, their steep price range might make some people think twice before getting one for their kitchen.
If you’re still on the fence about upgrading to an induction hob, having more information may help you make the best decision for both your kitchen and your wallet. So, let’s start by discussing what they are and how they compare to other types of cooktops.
What Is an Induction Hob?
An induction hob is a type of cooktop that uses electromagnetic energy to heat up and cook food. The high-frequency induction coils, which typically sit underneath a heat-resistant ceramic glass, transfer the heat directly to the cookware.
One key feature of an induction hob is that the cooktop itself emanates no heat, so it remains safe to touch even while you are using it for cooking food at high temperatures. This reduces the potential for heat-related injuries in the kitchen. Furthermore, it means this type of cooktop is also safer for households with younger children and pets.
An induction hob can come in various shapes and sizes, depending on the brand and model. A typical induction cooktop has anywhere from two to six burners. Some models also have flexible cooking zones, which allow you to use multiple burners simultaneously to accommodate different dishes you may be preparing at once.
It has a smooth and flat glass surface that’s very easy to use and clean. Unfortunately, this also makes this cooktop more prone to scratches.
Additionally, unlike gas cooktops, an induction hob usually doesn’t come with huge control knobs. Instead, you can control the cooking zone and power level using a touch button or screen. This gives the hob a sleek and futuristic look, which is perfect for a modern-styled kitchen.
Are Induction Hobs Safe?
Induction hobs are safe to use, even more so than their electric and gas counterparts. Because it transfers heat directly to the cookware, the cooktop itself stays relatively cool and safe to touch. Additionally, there are no risks of fire or burning since induction hobs don’t produce open flames.
Additionally, induction hobs also don’t produce any fumes and emit less CO2 compared to gas ranges.
Moreover, induction hobs often come with various safety features, such as smart sensors, timers, and automatic shutdown. Even if you accidentally leave the cooktop on for too long, it will automatically turn itself off.
All in all, induction hobs are considered one of the safest cooking appliances available today.
Induction Hobs and Pacemakers
While induction hobs are generally safe for everyone, there’s always an exception. If you or a household member uses a pacemaker, think carefully before installing an induction hob in your kitchen.
Studies have shown that the magnetic field produced by an induction cooktop can interfere with the pacemaker’s functions. Standing too close to the induction hob may prevent the pacemaker from working properly.
Induction Hob Safety Precautions
Aside from the issue with pacemakers, induction hobs pose no harm when used properly. Here are some safety precautions to help you operate the appliance:
- Keep magnetic items away when it’s on.
- Don’t put sugar, plastic, and aluminum foil on the surface.
- Never place an induction hob on any metal surface.
- Don’t preheat the burner.
- Wipe any spills immediately.
- Avoid using abrasive cleaners.
Are Induction Hobs Better Than Gas Hobs?
Induction hobs are significantly better than gas hobs. The number one reason for this is energy efficiency. Generally, induction hobs are up to 90% efficient. In contrast, only around 65% of the heat generated by gas hobs is used for cooking.
Their high energy efficiency also means that cooking with an induction hob is faster than cooking with a gas hob. That means you can prepare your meals faster and save precious time.
In addition to their impressive energy efficiency, induction hobs are safer than gas hobs. Since there’s no open flame, there’s a lowered risk of burning. The cooktop also remains relatively cool while cooking, making it safe to touch and easier to clean.
Also, did you know that gas stoves emit indoor air pollutants, such as carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrogen dioxide?
According to a 2020 report, air pollution from gas stoves can be five times higher than the legal outdoor limit. By switching to induction cooktops, you can significantly reduce your home’s air pollution level, as it doesn’t emit any fumes. Plus, a 2014 study also shows that you can reduce nitrogen dioxide (NO2) concentration in the kitchen by up to 51% by just switching to induction cooktops.
Are Induction Hobs Expensive?
Induction hobs are expensive, but they’re worth the steep price tag. The average induction hob costs anywhere from $1,000 to $5,000, but prices have declined steadily in recent years. You can get a decent induction hob at around $1,000 or budget-friendly ones for just $500-$800.
Need some affordable induction hob recommendations? We got you covered!
This Empava Induction Cooktop (from Amazon.com) is inexpensive, but it’s just as efficient as high-end induction hobs. This five-burner cooktop has fantastic features, including nine different power levels, a timer, and a power-boosting mode.
Alternatively, you can also get Cuisinart Double Induction Cooktop (from Amazon.com). This two-burner cooktop is perfect for those with limited space. It also boasts multiple power levels and individual timers for each burner, which make cooking easier than ever.
If you need something portable, why not try Duxtop Professional Portable Induction Cooktop? This lightweight, one-burner induction stove is perfect for traveling. With 20 power levels and 20 temperature settings, it will help you prepare delicious meals anywhere and anytime.
Consider Installation Costs
Aside from the initial price, you should also consider the installation cost of your new induction hobs.
According to Forbes, the basic installation cost of an induction cooktop ranges from $225 to $400. However, you might need to pay more to modify your kitchen to accommodate the new cooktop.
If you’re replacing an electric range, you probably don’t need to make a lot of adjustments to accommodate the new unit. This is because electric and induction hobs have similar electrical requirements.
Unfortunately, the same can’t be said when replacing a gas cooktop. In this circumstance, you should expect to pay several hundred dollars more to an electrician so they can install the necessary outlets to accommodate your new induction cooktop.
Benefits of Using an Induction Hob
Induction hobs have many significant benefits. Here are some great things to look forward to once you get an induction hob:
- It’s more energy-efficient. According to Energy Star, induction cooktops are 5-10% more efficient than electric ones and around three times more efficient than their gas counterparts.
- It cooks faster. The induction technology can help you prepare your meals more quickly. An induction hob can boil water 3-4 minutes faster than electric and gas ones.
- It remains relatively cool while cooking. Since heat is transferred directly to the cookware, the hob itself remains relatively cool during the cooking process.
- It’s easy to clean. Since it has a smooth glass top, you can easily wipe any spills using a damp cloth or sponge.
- It has lots of extra features. Depending on the model, an induction hob can have various additional features that electric and gas stovetops don’t have, such as a timer, child safety locks, and flexible cooking zones.
- It offers precise temperature control. Induction hobs have more precise temperature control thanks to a sophisticated electromagnetic field, allowing you to adjust the cooking temperature more easily.
- It reduces harmful pollutants in your home. An induction hob doesn’t emit fumes while you cook, unlike gas stoves. According to a 2014 study, you can reduce nitrogen dioxide (NO2) concentration in the kitchen by 51% by switching your gas cooktop to induction ones.
Drawbacks of Using an Induction Hob
Of course, like other cooktop types, using an induction hob also comes with its drawbacks. It’s up to you to decide whether these disadvantages are a deal-breaker for you or not:
- It requires special cookware. You’ll need to spend additional money to purchase induction-friendly cookware. Magnetic cookware is highly recommended, though cast iron and certain stainless steel cookware might also work.
- It’s expensive to purchase and install. Induction hobs cost more than electric and gas stovetops. Furthermore, the installation cost can be quite high, depending on how many adjustments you should make to your pre-existing setup.
- It’s relatively loud. An induction hob often produces a buzzing, rattling, or humming noise due to the electromagnetic energy transfer.
- It has a relatively steep learning curve. Even though an induction hob can improve your cooking experience, it takes a while to get the hang of it. You’ll need to learn how to control the heat levels and adapt your cooking methods.
- It might cause you to overcook your food. An induction hob can cook faster than other types of cooktop. So, you might accidentally overcook your food until you get used to it.
- It gets scratched easily. Since an induction cooktop is made of smooth glass, it’s more prone to wear and tear compared to electric and gas hobs.
Are Induction Hobs Worth Buying?
Induction hobs are worth buying. They are safer, quicker, and easier to use than gas cooktops. While they are slightly more expensive to buy and run, induction hobs can help you save money in the long run.
Since it doesn’t produce any open flames, you won’t run the risk of burning. Furthermore, the stovetop stays relatively cool to touch even when you’re cooking. So, it’s safer to handle compared to electric and gas cooktops, especially in a household with kids and pets.
Besides, an induction hob produces no fumes during the cooking process. Plus, it emits significantly less CO2 and NO2 than gas cooktops. So, while it still needs adequate ventilation, switching to induction hobs can help make the air in your kitchen cleaner and healthier.
That said, it might take a while to get used to induction cooktops. You might need to take some time to learn the control and temperature settings. Additionally, you might also have to adapt your cooking skills and techniques.
But once you get the hang of it, this technology can help improve your cooking experience with more precise temperature control and faster heating time. That way, you will be able to prepare meals more quickly, making dinner prep during busy weekdays much easier!
Furthermore, induction hobs are better for the climate due to their energy efficiency. So, switching to induction hobs can be a fantastic way to make your home more eco-friendly.
Yes, an induction cooktop may seem costly at first. Aside from the cooktop’s initial price, you also have to pay the installation cost and buy new cookware. However, switching to induction will help you save more money in the long run. Thanks to its efficiency, you don’t have to run the burner as long as you would have with gas or electric cooktops.