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Mar 14, 2012 12:28 PM

30" vs. 36" 5 Burner Gas Cooktop

At the threshold of doing a kitchen redo here and I'm pondering many options, including gas cooktops. Currently, I cook with an older Thermador 4 burner, 36" cooktop and am looking to replace it with another gas cooktop.
I know I want a 5 burner cooktop and am considering a 30" vs. 36" to eek out a bit more counter space around the cooktop and have a range hood easily expand beyond the borders of the cooktop to catch steam etc.
Does anyone have experience cooking with multiple pots on a 5 burner 30"? I'm wondering if it gets a bit crowded and tough to maneuver pots and pans around. Should I get a 36" with more room to groove?

Any suggestions for a 5 burner gas cooktop? I'm looking for mid-range pricing around $1500 give or take, reliability and high btu as well as super low btu burner for lowwwwwwwwwww simmer.
Thanks all!

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  1. I've had 5-burner, 30-in DCS and Capital ranges spanning the last 10 years or so. They're great, but, yes, it does get crowded up there if you try to use them all at the same time. In fact, what I find significant is that I can't even use the middle with any corner if the two pots/pans are large... they're just too close. So if I want to use the larger middle burner for a big pot or saute, I can't fit a good-sized pot on ANY of the other four (and keep both centered). So I just have to use two of the corners to handle those pans. But if that's the case, why bother with the fifth burner? If you have a couple of items that are small, then you can juggle them and use everything.Its nice to have, but if you really use 5 or 6 burners a lot, I think you need to stay with the 36-in. Of course, be sure that the grate is continuous across the top surface so you can juggle things easily.

    6 Replies
    1. re: woodburner

      Thanks for sharing your experience.
      I don't necessarily need 5 burners, but I like the thought of having them for the occasion that I might need them. I have to weight that with the practical aspect of the fact that mostly, 4 burners are going to be enough.

      1. re: woodburner

        I'll echo what woodburner said. I have been in the same boat of looking into 30 and 36 inch burner configurations and I have a couple family members that have a 30" 5 burner gas cooktop. I paid particular attention when we were there for Thanksgiving that a pot over the large center burner really crowded the corner burners.
        I've narrowed my options down to the bluestar 36" top, either in 6 or 5 burner config. I really want to see one in person with a 12" fry pan and a stock pot next to each other to see how much wiggle room i have between the two in practical application.
        The five burner cooktop is lower in price compared to the 6 burner. And while I really prefer the look of the 6 burner top, i'm not sure i could justify the difference in price.

        1. re: cannibal

          what did you end up with? are you happy?

          1. re: smilingal

            Thanks for bumping this up. I chose the 36 inch Wolf gas cooktop and am very pleased. I like the layout, the lights indicating that the gas is on and which burners are going, the auto re-light if a flame goes out and the low, low simmer capabilities.
            We're just finalizing details on our plans and should start construction in 8 weeks or so.
            Can't wait.
            Thanks to all for helping me out!
            Here's a link to the Wolf cooktop-

            1. re: monavano

              what made you go with Wolf? Is that an open burner? It appears to be but didn't think Wolf makes it.

              1. re: smilingal

                The burners are sealed. Really, I love the notion that I'll have Wolf in my kitchen ;-) I think it's a great cooktop and I'm confident it will perform for years and years.
                The Wolf doesn't have really high burners like some others, but 15K is enough for me and will be noticeable after cooking with 11K max for many years.
                Thermador was also on my short list, as was Dacor.