The Different Types of Built-in Counter Cooktops
Electric cooktops come in two varieties:
Electric coils and ceramic smooth tops that have radiant ribbon coils or an electromagnetic induction cooker.
A gas cooktop will usually cost less than an electric cooktop. However, a gas cooktop will have a higher installation cost (up to $1000). You still need a 120V outlet for the ignition and a gas pipeline in your home. Of course, you can still use a tank with a gas cooktop, but you will have to make sure you always have a gas tank available.
Induction vs Electric Coil
Here is a comparison between induction cooktops and electric coil cooktops.
The main difference between induction and electric cooktops is the heating. A radiant electric coil will take longer to get hot enough to cook and will take much longer to get to a safe temperature. You should also expect more residual heat.
However, a radiant electric coil is still faster than the standard open coil. Induction cooktops, on the other hand, will heat extremely fast. But they are only compatible with certain cookware.
Installation and Price
The installation process and price of an electric coil cooktop and induction cooktop is the same because the electrical requirements are the same. You can expect to pay around $800 for installation not including the price of cabinets.
Cabinets can get quite expensive and vary widely in price.
Similarities Between The Two
Both cooktop styles usually have an indicator that shows a hot surface with control locks. A few induction cookers will even have a simulated flame, but that is a rare feature.
The other similarity is that since they are both electric cooktops; they will both require the same hardwiring. This is actually an advantage if going from induction to coils or vice versa.
Contrary to popular belief, a radiant smoothtop cooker will have some restrictions on the type of cookware recommended for use. These restrictions are generally for stoneware, glassware, and heavy cast iron as it can easily leave scratches on the surface.
Induction compatible cookware requires a magnetic bottom to work on the cooktop. We still recommend cookware made specifically for induction cooktops because certain magnetic cookware can scratch the cooktop.
Portable Cooktops and Two Burner Electric Cooktops
Electric stovetops come in portable and built-in options with either one burner or two burners if portable. They will have 4-5 burners if built-in, but small ones do exist. If it’s a built-in appliance, then it usually must be connected to a 220V connector via a hardwire.
A portable burner can come in any form. A solid plate, induction, or infrared appears to be the most popular, but all types are available.
Downdraft on an Electric Cooker?
A handful of cooktops have a downdraft extractor built into them. Expect to pay a little more for one, though. If it doesn’t come with a downdraft extractor, then it’s easy enough to mount on your counter behind the stovetop.
The ventilation systems have ducts that will vent outdoors. These systems aren’t the best because they do push hot air down when it wants to rise. However, they still do a better job than not having any ventilation system on your cooktop.
Now, if that doesn’t do it for you, then you can always purchase a range hood separately. Range hoods are nice because hot air flows up, so they tend to be very efficient.