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Mar 28, 2011 09:07 AM

Why would anyone.........

install an electric cooktop? Isn't gas the standard because it cooks better and is cheaper to use?
We're looking to buy a house and this particular one is the only one we've ever run across that had an electric cooktop. If we buy, should I replace it with gas?

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  1. I don't like Electric Cooktops, but, two of the main reasons why some people like Electric cooktops is:
    1. How easy it is to clean
    2. That modern look

    1. Well, I live in an area with limited natural gas service. Some towns have it, others do not and it simply isn't available outside of town.

      The lack of availability has created generations fo people that don't "know" gas and therefore, they don't even consider propane. Electric is all they have ever known.

      I am one of these people. When we bought a weekend house, I was convinced that I was going to blow up the house everytime I used the propane stove.

      Now that I am comfortable with it, I can't wait to replace my home electric cooktop with gas when we eventually remodel the kitchen.

      1 Reply
      1. re: cleobeach

        And I believe that the newist gas stovetops are sealed units also. We were looking at them not too long ago in Sears. I'd replace my 20 yr old gas stove with one any day.

      2. The original comment has been removed
        1. Not all areas have gas service. Electric cooktops have their problem, but they also have some advantages. No gas leak to worry about, no smell, cheaper, less heat lost to the surrounding....

          16 Replies
          1. re: Chemicalkinetics

            it IS cheaper??? That's a surprise. I would have thought it more expensive than gas.
            TO ALL: the house is located in an area that is served by the local gas co. so it is readily available but, I'm wondering if this particular house is connected. Obviously I will have to find out. Either way, this shouldn't affect our decision to buy.

            1. re: mucho gordo

              When we moved into our house, everything was electric and they had just run gas into the subdivision. I was thrilled to change over to gas but now I might consider induction if I had to have electric.

              1. re: mucho gordo

                "it IS cheaper??? That's a surprise."

                Why is it a surprise? It is cheaper to purchase an electric stove over a gas stove.


                1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                  Thanks, Chem. I wouldn't have known. I haven't been pricing them. Electric would probably be sufficient for our needs; it's just that we haven't had to think about it before.

                  1. re: alanbarnes

                    But you can't blister a tortilla on an induction cooktop -- only reason I'm holding out.

                    1. re: pikawicca

                      Even with gas I always use a griddle anyway - it takes a few seconds to warm up, but you get much more even heating.

                    2. re: mucho gordo


                      While you asked for some counterarguments for electric stoves and I have given some, I also want to concede your points. I think many people do agree with your feeling when you wrote "Isn't gas the standard because it cooks better and is cheaper to use?"

                      I have ran across several polls and many people do share that opinions/views that gas is the standard for cooking because it fits their styles of cooking and in the long run it is cheaper to operate gas than electric -- at least in many areas. So yes, you are correct about these opinions.

                    3. re: Chemicalkinetics

                      Hey Chem
                      Up here in canada gas stoves and cooktops are either the same price or gas is cheaper

                      1. re: Dave5440

                        :) Thanks. I think electric stoves are generally cheaper in the US. That is not to say the cheapest electric stoves are cheaper than the cheapest gas stoves. It is just that when we look around the stores and online, there are many more lower budget electric stoves around.

                        1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                          I just checked Home D for the same model range in gas and electric GE and most LG's where the same price. Gas cooktops where also cheaper than all the electrics. When I bought my GE gas dryer it was less than 1/2 the price of electric for the same model.

                          1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                            Given all the bells and whistles available on stoves now, it would be difficult to compare the relative costs of gas and electric stoves. You'd have to pick a narrowly defined pair, e.g. 30" slidein, no frills etc...

                          2. re: Dave5440

                            Hi, Dave5445 and Chem:

                            I may have unintentionally created this sub-issue (re: lowest price). I did not mean to say that coil electric ranges are necessarily less expensive. What I meant to convey was that someone who was choosing between a rock-bottom model of each could very rationally choose coil over gas. I made that statement on the basis that even a widely wound resistive element will generally give a more even heat than a crappy single-ring gas hob. What I meant by acquisition cost is that, generally, one would have to pay more $$ to obtain a gas hobbed stove that is equivalent to a resistive coil for evenness.

                            1. re: kaleokahu

                              :) You think you started this sub-topic, but looking at the timeline. My post on "cheap" was earlier than yours How do I get out of this mess (about price) now. I got it. I can talk about knives to Dave :P

                        2. re: mucho gordo

                          Our street has gas but it was never run to the house. In order to get the gas run from the street to our house is several thousands of dollars. Then it needs to be plumbed into and under the house.

                          We are young and have other cosmetic issues to address with the house before even considering spending that kind of money. We have a smoothtop range and when it starts failing, we'll buy induction.

                          I'd like a gas range, but I'd like hardwood floors more.

                          1. re: LaureltQ

                            You're lucky. When I bought my all-electric house, I figured paying the city to bring in a gas main would be worth it because then I could cook on gas and put gas logs in the fireplace and never have to shovel ashes again! The cheapest route to get a gas main to me would have cost me $70,000.00! I have a ceramic cook top.

                      2. It would be about 1/4 mile to pipe gas into our house. I would dearly love gas in our kitchen but when we moved here(Phoenix suburbs) nearly all the neighborhoods we were considering were electric only. I have mostly copper cookware so induction is we live with a flat top cooking surface and I've learned how to adapt well to it over the years(typically using multiple burners for temperature control when I need it).

                        I'd still love to have gas...we've talked about trying to pipe the house for a propane tank but aren't committed to this house long term so haven't gone to the expense(though it's already been a ten year "short term" commitment).

                        In cities like Phoenix that saw so much growth in the mid 70's forward electric only homes aren't really that uncommon.

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: ziggylu

                          i have a 20+ y.o. sealed, glass, gas cooktop. It is GE Monogram and it has served me well. The burners sit above the glass. Ease of cleaning is a big plus. I have considered buying a double burner induction cooker, but have realized it is one more thing I really don't need. Pots and pans are not a problem with induction. Burtpn, Fagpr,Swiss Diamond and Mauviel all make interface discs so that any cookware can be used on induction. I am pretty wedded to gas. If we were to move to a neighborhood or area that did not have gas available I would consider propane as long as the covenants and restrictions don't prohibit it. In that case I might consider induction or I might just keep looking. No gas could be a deal breaker for me.

                          1. re: Candy

                            Phoenix really can be a difficult market to find gas in. First and foremost on our "must" list when we mvoed here was 15 min or less commute, this put us in a suburban area that was built up primarily in the 70s-early 90s which made finding a gas piped house that met our other criteria(including price range - though even high end homes from this era are often electric only out here) just about impossible. I was disappointed but with a decent quality flat top electric I've learned to adapt over the years.

                            It's not my ideal kitchen but it's also not my last. Humans are amazingly adaptable creatures and it turns out you can in fact turn out pretty high quality meals from an electric kitchen. ;)