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Is it worth considering a range cooker?

For many a range cooker is synonymous with farmhouse kitchens, large families and good cooks! – but think again – the range cooker has moved on substantially. Still the kitchen powerhouse, the latest models maintain their timeless look but now also include the latest innovations and technology you’d expect from a hi-tech oven such as touch displays and induction cooking.

A traditional range is made from cast iron, fuelled by wood or oil and can heat the home beyond the kitchen as well as cook your food. Aga is the range that springs to most people’s minds and once lit, tends to stay on all day. However, manufacturers have recognised the need to move with the times as consumer demands change.

With the traditional charm of the original range remaining, the need for modern convenience has been embraced. Instead of solid fuel, there are now a wide selection of ranges that are either all electric, gas or dual fuel, meaning that they combine the two sources. Fully electric ranges can deliver an almost identical cooking experience without the need for a flue so can be installed in any kitchen providing there’s a socket.

The one thing that appeals to many is the range’s impressive cooking capacity, usually having up to three ovens as well as a grill so that casseroles, pies, potatoes and crumbles can all be cooked at the same time. In addition, the hob usually includes up to six, sometimes eight, burners and can also include griddle pan and hotplate. With such great functionality, it’s no wonder a range is so attractive for those that love to entertain or for those that like to cook larger quantities or even for those having to cater for different tastes such as vegans, vegetarians and meat-eaters.

As a focal point in any kitchen buying a range cooker is a considered purchase. Best to do plenty of research beforehand and take time to talk to kitchen specialists and stockists as it’s important to find the perfect range cooker to suit your needs, space and exact cooking requirements. Think about your kitchen layout, fuel source that will best suit your home and lifestyle, colour as well as style.

  • Ranges are generally between 90-110cm wide, but compact versions do exist to fit a 60cm opening.
  • Remember to leave a 3cm gap between the back of your range and the wall so that the cables won’t get damaged or the induction vent blocked.
  • Ranges can be heavy – anything from 35kg for more contemporary models to 350kg for an original cast iron one, so make sure the floor is strong enough
  • Ensure your kitchen floor is level and that you have space for the chimney or flue if you’ve chosen a solid fuel stove, or for two plug sockets if you’ve chosen an electric one.

Once you’ve made your decision, choose a specialist range supplier to install your appliance – they generally pride themselves on their after-sales service and are usually happy to guide you through the cooking and cleaning process, even offering cookery masterclasses in some instances!

16th Apr 2020