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May 24, 2010 10:08 AM

Bad experiences w/Induction?

I keep hearing about induction and all the great things...has anyone had any BAD experiences? Regret putting it in? I'm a Huge skeptic, but I have to admit, I might be considering it in our kitchen remodel.

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  1. Reminds me of this


    I personally loves my induction cooktop. I think almost all induction cooktops performs more or less the same. It is the small little details that may annoy people.

    1. I've been using an induction cooktop for about 5 years now and LOVE it. The only negatives I can think of are:

      1. Some pots and pans can hum or buzz at some settings. (IME, this isn't all that common, and the noise isn't that irritating anyway.)
      2. If your pots and pans aren't perfectly flat, they can wobble or spin on the glass surface.
      3. There is always the risk of scratching, cracking, or breaking the glass top.
      4. My cats leave footprints on my black glass cooktop. (It seems they like to jump up there when I'm not around.)
      5. There are times when I'm attracted to a piece of glass, ceramic, or aluminum cookware, but then remember that it's not suitable for induction. (This is becoming less common as more manufacturers introduce induction-capable lines. For example, I have a nice aluminum Swiss Diamond square casserole from their new induction series.)
      6. I worry that I might do something dumb if I have to cook on a gas or electric cooktop, like forget that the handles and lips of pots and pans will get really hot, or fail to be sufficiently careful to avoid a fire, or expect the element to turn off automatically.

      1. Not necessarily bad but here are things I've noticed:

        1. Obviously when it's out of the magnetic field so there is no induction so when I pickup to the pan to toss/flip the food it loses heat much faster than gas. The field seems to be 1" or less on my cooktop.
        2. The heating element will turn off automatically after a few seconds when it sense the pan is removed.
        3. The diameter of the heating element is smaller than the painted circle.

        11 Replies
        1. re: pabboy

          Not necessarily true. I can leave my pot away for mins before it turns off.

          1. re: cutipie721

            My elements switch off as soon as you lift the pot, but switch back on again (at the same heat setting) when you put it down. If you don't put the pot back down within a minute or two, the cooktop beeps and the element won't turn on again automatically.

            1. re: tanuki soup

              ah, you're right. I miss read pabboy's comment as the whole cooktop turning off when the pan is away. Of course the heating element wouldn't turn on when the pan is not on the cooktop.

              1. re: cutipie721

                I can see pabboy's point, though. When you lift your pan to flip or shake stuff, you can't hold it over the flame to keep it hot.

                1. re: tanuki soup

                  Just how long exactly do you hold it off the induction coil to worry about keeping the pan hot? If memory serves, metal once heated stays warm/hot and doens't immediately drop to ambient temperature immediately after removal from its heat source (induction/gas/electric).

                  1. re: wattacetti

                    Obviously it depends on what I'm cooking and the reason for taking it off the cooker. With gas and electric, the heat source is still providing heat. 4-5 seconds off does not make a difference. With induction, 4-5 seconds, not only is the pan removed from the magnetic field, my cooker turns off after 3-4 seconds. If I was using cast iron then heat retention isn't an issue. Most of the time I'm using All-Clad SS which has an aluminum core that readily gives off heat. In addition compared to cast iron, there is much less mass to retain heat.

                    1. re: wattacetti

                      It is a problem espeically for using a wok though the wok is not the only problem. Several wok techniques require the users to constantly flip and movee the foods, therefore removing the wok away from the range.

                      This can cause the induction range to shut down, which is annoying to say the least.

                      In addition, this can cause the lifetime of an induction range to go down.

              2. re: cutipie721

                If your induction range won't turn off for mins after the pot is removed, then you are in serious trouble.

                1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                  The induction coil turns off, but my cooktop unit stays on. When I remove my pot, the display would flash showing no compatible cookware detected. When I don't put the pan back onto the cooktop within a few mins, the cooktop shuts off. I don't really see this as a "serious trouble".

                  I can barely hold an empty pan with one hand, let alone tossing the content. :-)

                  1. re: cutipie721

                    I see. So our problem is really the fact that you cannot hold an empty pan with one hand. We need to work on that. :P

                    1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                      Thanks all. I have lots to think about. I appreciate all the input!

            2. I personally love induction but I went back to read your "range top redo" thread and if you want to have flexibility and have counter space and budget, why not look at something like Miele's CombiSets?

              CombiSet with gas (single and dual-burner)
              CombiSet with induction (single and dual element + induction wok options)
              CombiSet teppanyaki
              CombiSet salamander

              Gaggenau makes something similar though I suspect something much more expensive.

              And if that doesn't turn your crank, hook up both a four-burner gas and a four-element induction of your choice.

              1 Reply
              1. re: wattacetti

                Great insight, I hadn't thought of that or come across it. Thanks!

              2. I've cooked on induction few times, but I often want to tip a saute pan to concentrate heat in one area (like when a stir-fry is too watery and you want to evaporate a little liquid). This is impossible with induction. Not sure it's a deal-breaker, though, if you like the other aspects.

                5 Replies
                1. re: dmd_kc

                  Hmm, I have never thought on it, but you are correct.

                  1. re: dmd_kc

                    Actually, I can do that on my induction cooktop. I just need to place the corner of the pan within the circle marked on the glass. FWIW, I've also used my induction cooktop to completely season a carbon steel evasee - I just rolled the sides and rim of the pan around on top of the element, which didn't switch off as long as some metal was in contact with it.

                    Pic: http://www.chow.com/uploads/1/7/6/391...

                    1. re: tanuki soup

                      I would have thought the induction cooktop would consider too little metal and too little magnetic resistance and turned itself off, but I guess not.

                      1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                        Depends on the cooktop. On the friend's Wolf I've used, it required the entire surface of the pot to contact the element. No corner or ridge we tried worked -- period.

                        1. re: dmd_kc


                          I see.

                          These induction stovetops are designed to turn off for safety when the cookware is removed. Therefore, your friend's induction cooktop turns off at a lower threshold is not necessary a bad thing. It just means it is designed to lean closer to on the safety/reliability than on the convenience.