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Find the Best Ranges, Ovens and Stoves

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by ConsumerAffairs Research Team

Choosing a stove, oven or range means deciding between a lot more than selecting either gas or electric. Use our guide to research the best range, oven and stove company for you. Modern models are available with advanced technology and innovative features, so it's important to think about your options before you make a purchase. We explain what particular features to consider, including temperature probes, network integrations and software features. 

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Types of ranges, ovens and stoves

Freestanding range
Freestanding range
  • Most popular option
  • Controls are on the backsplash panel
  • Able to be installed almost anywhere
  • Electric, gas and duel-fuel options
Slide-in range
Slide-in range
  • Has a built-in appearance
  • Slides in flush with countertops
  • Controls are found on the front
  • Usually there is more room top
Drop-in range
Drop-in range
  • Custom cabinets are required
  • Offers a more seamless aesthetic
  • Does not have a backsplash panel
  • Controls are located on the front
Wall oven
Wall oven
  • An oven without the stove
  • Installed in walls or cabinets
  • Provides easier access
  • Most wall ovens are electric
Cooktop
Cooktop
  • Installed on a countertop
  • Usually paired with a wall oven
  • Available in both gas and electric
  • Offers more options in burner style and size

How to choose a range, oven or stove

  1. Consider the heat source
    The heat source for ranges, ovens and stoves is the primary aspect that determines their performance characteristics.
    • Electric: Electric heating utilizes spiral metal coils to produce heat for cooking. They provide consistent heat but are not usually the most responsive type of heat source for quickly switching between heat levels.
    • Gas: Gas is a powerful heat source that can be quickly adjusted to varying heat levels but is sometimes not as consistent as electric heating.
    • Induction: Induction heating utilizes magnetic waves to induce heat in the cooking vessel. It can combine the best of both worlds in that it is a consistent source of heat that responds quickly to adjustments, but it can only be used with specially designed pots and pans.
  2. Compare cooking surfaces
    The cooking surface is an important component of the appliance's visual appearance and can also impact how it should be used and cleaned.
    • Bare burners: Bare burners place the heating element (for electric) or gas dispersal ring (for gas) on top of the cooking surface, with no covering other than a metal grill or bracket. They offer easy access for cleaning but can trap cooking debris in nooks and crannies and may be less safe due to direct access to the heat source.
    • Glass top: Glass tops are only available with cooking appliances that use electric or induction heating. The heating element is placed below a pane of glass, allowing for ease of use and cleaning. However, care must be taken not to subject the glass to quick temperature changes to avoid cracking or bursting.
  3. Think about what cooking unit layout you like
    Cooking appliances are available in a variety of layouts.
    • Single combined: A single stovetop above a single cooking oven in one unit is the most common layout for cooking appliances.
    • Dual combined: A dual combined unit contains both a stove and a cooking oven. It may include two stoves and two ovens, especially in professional-grade appliances. Consumer-grade appliances typically include two ovens with a single stove top.
    • Single: Single ovens and single stoves offer convenient flexibility for users when it comes to choosing how to install appliances in their kitchen.
  4. Look for secondary heating sources
    Many cooking appliances use secondary heating sources or techniques to meet additional cooking needs and performance characteristics.
    • Convection heating: Convection heating uses a fan or series of fans to blow the heated air around inside an oven. This ensures even distribution of the heat and can speed up cooking times.
    • Infrared: Infrared heating is a common special feature for modern cooking appliances. It is typically used as an additional heat source for oven broiling and crisping or to turn the oven into a warming drawer.
    • Quick heating and cooling: Some appliances provide additional settings for stovetop and oven heating that allow the heat level to be quickly raised or lowered or to maintain a specific temperature with high accuracy. Typical uses include a "quick boil" feature that allow a burner to temporarily operate at a hotter than normal temperature to bring a liquid to boil and an "accurate simmer" feature that allows the user to set very accurate low temperatures to protect sensitive recipes.
  5. Consider how easy it is to clean
    A cooking appliance may contain special features for easy cleaning.
    • Self-cleaning: Oven self-cleaning features heat the oven to carbonize stains and food debris, after which the residue can be easily wiped up. In other respects, "self-cleaning" usually refers to special coatings or enamel that discourage food debris from adhering to the surface so it can be easily wiped away.
    • Construction: The physical layout and construction of a cooking appliance can impact its cleaning characteristics. "Easy clean" appliances often rely on glass tops and minimal use of joints to reduce nooks and crannies that might trap food debris.
    • Surface coatings: Cooking appliances may include ceramic coatings related to the latest generation of non-stick cookware that make cleaning easier. Stainless steel and other surfaces can also undergo chemical applications to prevent adhesion of stains, most commonly in professional-grade appliances.
  6. Look for additional features
    Cooking appliances may contain a variety of special features to enhance the cooking experience or increase ease of use.
    • Temperature probes: Some cooking appliances contain built-in temperature probes, allowing users to check the progress of meat or other recipes without having to buy a separate thermometer. The most advanced units can utilize the data from the temperature probe to automatically adjust heat levels.
    • Network integration: Smart cooking appliances, including smart stoves, smart ovens and smart ranges, can be integrated into a user's Wi-Fi network to offer features like adjusting temperature from a smartphone or setting a cooking timer from a desktop computer.
    • Software features: As cooking appliances continue to adopt the tenets of a "smart home," a variety of software features might be included. Such features can range from setting automatic "appointments" to clean the oven to setting automatic updates about the current cooking temperature. It might even include a database of recipes and other information that can be accessed using a touchscreen.

Ranges, ovens and stoves FAQ

How much does an oven range cost?
Oven ranges cost anywhere between $400 and $5,000 or more. The wide price range reflects the many styles, sizes and features available. Ranges with dual ovens and self-cleaning features usually cost at least $1,000.
Are double ovens better than single?
It depends on how much cooking you do at once. Double ovens allow you to cook different foods simultaneously at different temperatures and for varying amounts of time. However, double ovens take up more space in your kitchen, and they are more expensive than single ovens.
What is the difference between a stove and an oven?
Put simply:
  • An oven is an enclosed, heated chamber used to cook food. It usually has racks inside, a door that opens and closes, temperature controls and a timer.
  • A stove is a cooking surface that uses direct heat to cook food.
  • A range is a kitchen appliance with both a stove and an oven.
Are wall ovens better than ranges?
Wall ovens and ranges have their respective pros and cons. A range uses kitchen space more efficiently and is the cheaper option but has less accessibility. A wall oven can give you more cooking capacity and eye-level access but takes up more space and is usually more expensive.
What are the benefits of a double oven?
Double ovens have many benefits, including:
  • Increased cooking capacity
  • Ability to cook multiple dishes without flavor transfer
  • Separate timing and temperature controls
  • Convenience for larger families and entertaining parties
Can you use both ovens on a double oven at the same time?
Yes, because both ovens have their own set of controls, you can use each oven independently. That means you can cook different foods at different temperatures at the same time.
What is the difference between a range and a stove?
A stove is a cooking surface that uses direct heat to cook food. A range is a kitchen appliance that combines a stove and an oven in a single unit.
Are electric stoves good?
Electric stoves have many benefits, such as:
  • Simple operation
  • Lower cost than gas stoves
  • Option for flat, glass cooktop
  • Easy cleaning

On the other hand, electric stoves may take longer to heat up than gas stoves, and they won’t work if you have a power outage. Gas stoves also typically last longer than electric stoves.

Not sure how to choose?

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    Range, oven and stove reviews

    AUTHORIZED PARTNER
    Viking Ranges

    Viking was founded in 1987 when it became the first major manufacturer to offer professional-grade appliances for home users. Its first appliances went into production in 1990 at its (then) newly opened headquarters in Greenwood, Missisippi, where the company remains to this day.

    • Industrial heritage: Viking's focus on professional-grade standards provides users with high-quality appliances that offer powerful features for cooking large meals, either at home or in a business.
    • Rangetops: Viking offers one of the most extensive product lines for range tops and cooktops.
    • Stainless steel: Viking is almost exclusively dedicated to stainless steel construction, giving consumers who prefer that aesthetic appeal a wide range of choices for finding different fits and finishes.
    • Double units: Viking has the largest number of options for users seeking double ovens and double cook tops.
    • Authorized dealers: Users who buy from authorized local dealers enjoy extensive and convenient warranty and technical support.
    Read 1683 Reviews
    Kenmore Ovens

    Kenmore is one of the oldest names in the cooking appliances industry, with a history stretching back more than 100 years. Its re-introduced range of cooking appliances dominated the home market during the economic boom after World War II.

    Read more about Kenmore Ovens
    Samsung Stove-Oven-Range

    Samsung has provided high-quality electronics, computer components and appliances for more than 70 years. Samsung engineers perfected microwave technology for the first home-use models in the early 1970s and their technology maintains that innovative spirit while designing modern cooking appliances.

    Read 689 Reviews
    LG Ranges

    LG's history stretches back to 1947 when "Lucky" (Luk-Hai) was founded in Korea to produce plastics and other consumer goods. Since then it has become one of the biggest brand names in consumer electronics and appliances across the world.

    Read more about LG Ranges
    GE Ranges

    GE has been in business for more than 100 years and is one of the most recognized names in American manufacturing. It introduced one of the first mass-market electric stovetops in 1928: the Calrod Electric Range.

    Read more about GE Ranges
    Frigidaire Gas Ranges

    Frigidaire's history stretches back to its founding in Indiana in 1916, when many of its most innovative "iceboxes" still used actual ice. It introduced the world's first 30-inch electric range in 1952.

    Read more about Frigidaire Gas Ranges
    Whirlpool Ranges & Ovens

    Whirlpool is one of the oldest names for home appliances in the U.S., with a company history stretching back to 1911. It currently sells more than $15 billion of home appliances and other products in more than 170 countries around the world.

    Read more about Whirlpool Ranges & Ovens
    Wolf Cooking Appliances

    Wolf Sub Zero was founded in 1945 as the Sub Zero Freezer Company. The company began producing cooking appliances in 2000, after acquiring the Wolf Range Corporation and its manufacturing facilities.

    Read more about Wolf Cooking Appliances
    KitchenAid Stoves & Ovens

    KitchenAid has been an iconic name in household appliances since its founding in 1919 and the introduction of its flagship automatic mixer. It began producing cooking appliances in 1985.

    Read 935 Reviews
    Maytag Ranges/Ovens

    Maytag is the oldest home appliance manufacturer still operating in the U.S. and was founded in 1893. It produced its earliest cooking appliances in the early 1980s, marking its first serious foray into home products unrelated to cleaning.

    Read more about Maytag Ranges/Ovens

    Compare Top Range, Oven and Stove Brands

    by ConsumerAffairs Research Team

    The ConsumerAffairs Research Team believes everyone deserves to make smart decisions. We aim to provide readers with the most up-to-date information available about today's consumer products and services.

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