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Induction Stoves

MorrisonHiker

S 100D 2021.4.15
Mar 8, 2015
9,423
8,566
Colorado
So... one of my friends is building a house and I managed to convince him to go 100% electric. The biggest hurdle as it often seems to be is that his wife 'had' to have a gas stove. I was aware of induction stoves but I hadn't really looking into them. When I converted everything in my home to electric I didn't even consider induction, just never crossed my mind. I guess because I'm not that sophisticated when it comes to cooking.

Now that I've done a bit of research I'm really impressed. Aside from the fact that non-ferrous pans don't work they appear to be superior to gas in every way. The main complain against electric stove I've heard is that they don't respond quick enough. Induction does since it heats the pan directly.

Does anyone here have an induction stove? Which model?
Several years ago, I came home to a burning smell when I walked in the door. I found one of the dogs had stood up and pushed in one of the knobs on the front of our gas stove. It was in the 'ignite' position and constantly trying to light but fortunately the gas wasn't coming out. A cookie sheet on the range was very hot and the microwave above was very hot as well so it could've been trying to ignite for hours. We removed the knobs that day from our dual fuel range and started shopping for induction. We had a Samsung induction range/oven delivered a few days later and have never looked back. Induction provides the control of gas with so much more safety. The burners won't even turn on unless there is a proper metal pan or pot sitting on them. They are so powerful that we can boil water in less than 90 seconds and if we remove the pot and touch the 'burner', there's virtually no heat. There are lots of Youtube videos showing people demonstrating the safety of induction. Some use a frying pan that has been cut in half. They then crack an egg into the frying pan. The half on the frying pan will cook but the part of the egg on the burner won't cook at all. You can actually put a paper towel down on the range between a pot and the burner and it won't ignite. We don't do that but if we have a pot that boils over, it makes clean up so easy since you can just lift the pot and instantly wipe down the top of the range since there's no need to wait for it to cool off.

With that said, induction ranges are high tech and can have problems. Our initial range lasted 20 minutes before it popped and just stopped working. We swapped it out with a new one and haven't had any issues since...and don't need to worry if the dogs try counter surfing while we're not home.

BTW, our induction cooking is done with solar energy (either powered directly or by our Powerwalls). We only pull from the grid for a few hours, typically from 3 am to 5:30 am and we're never cooking then.
 
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nwdiver

Well-Known Member
Feb 17, 2013
7,604
9,704
United States
I have been reading the threads and am really interested in replacing an old Viking gas 6 burner cooktop with induction. BIG problem. The center island where the existing cooktop is located is set onto a limestone tile floor on concrete slab with radiant heat. The existing power there is 120V 20A. I assume that here is some kind of metallic conduit or metal cable in the slab just for the 120V. Other than tearing up tile and carefully making a groove in the concrete for new conduit from the 'perimeter' of the kitchen to the island, I'm stuck as I would need 240V 40A service.

You might be able to upgrade your 120v 20A to 240v 20A. If your induction stove doesn't need neutral you can rewire your 120v L-N-G to L-L-G. That would give you 16A @ 240v. It likely wouldn't be enough to meet the full capacity of most large ranges but I bet it would be sufficient 99.9% of the time. 3.8kW is still A LOT of power especially for induction.

OR- use the old existing line to pull some #6 and get a 50A circuit.
 

JPP

Active Member
Feb 4, 2013
3,056
1,284
SF Bay Area, CA
You might be able to upgrade your 120v 20A to 240v 20A. If your induction stove doesn't need neutral you can rewire your 120v L-N-G to L-L-G. That would give you 16A @ 240v. It likely wouldn't be enough to meet the full capacity of most large ranges but I bet it would be sufficient 99.9% of the time. 3.8kW is still A LOT of power especially for induction.

OR- use the old existing line to pull some #6 and get a 50A circuit.

As far as I can tell all of the 36" 5 burner induction cooktops need 40A. I don't want to undersize the feed. And I'm pretty sure the original construction has the 120V feed in the metal cable buried in the concrete--I really doubt I could pull any larger wire to upsize to like #6.
 

JPP

Active Member
Feb 4, 2013
3,056
1,284
SF Bay Area, CA
Faced with a similar situation, I added a "decorative accent" to my floor. Ended up looking better than the plain floor. Sorry, no pictures. This was a while back! Be creative!

Clever--I assume a row of contrasting tile or the like from the island to the perimeter.
 

nwdiver

Well-Known Member
Feb 17, 2013
7,604
9,704
United States
As far as I can tell all of the 36" 5 burner induction cooktops need 40A. I don't want to undersize the feed. And I'm pretty sure the original construction has the 120V feed in the metal cable buried in the concrete--I really doubt I could pull any larger wire to upsize to like #6.

Sure; But that's based on running all 5 burners at 100%. How often do you think that would be necessary?
Worst case is you reset a tripped 20A breaker once every 3 years ;)

I've been running my entire home off a 30A circuit including an electric stove (non-induction :() for over a year now. It's amazing how far you can stretch an amp :)
 
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JPP

Active Member
Feb 4, 2013
3,056
1,284
SF Bay Area, CA
Sure; But that's based on running all 5 burners at 100%. How often do you think that would be necessary?
Worst case is you reset a tripped 20A breaker once every 3 years ;)

I've been running my entire home off a 30A circuit including an electric stove (non-induction :() for over a year now. It's amazing how far you can stretch an amp :)

Yes, that’s doable. Just not exactly legal or to code. So when I cause a fire, my insurance won’t pay. If it works for you, great. I am not comfortable with that plan.
 

Merrill

Merrill
Jan 23, 2013
3,705
1,260
Sonoma, California
As far as I can tell all of the 36" 5 burner induction cooktops need 40A. I don't want to undersize the feed. And I'm pretty sure the original construction has the 120V feed in the metal cable buried in the concrete--I really doubt I could pull any larger wire to upsize to like #6.
There are some 5 burner 36 inch induction cook tops that show a 30 amp breaker.
 

nwdiver

Well-Known Member
Feb 17, 2013
7,604
9,704
United States
Yes, that’s doable. Just not exactly legal or to code. So when I cause a fire, my insurance won’t pay. If it works for you, great. I am not comfortable with that plan.

You'd have a 20A circuit protected by a 20A breaker. There would be no more risk of a fire than if you had a 40A circuit protected by a 40A breaker. If there's a fire it would be the fault of the 20A breaker for allowing >20A...

Really wouldn't be that much different to how regular 110v outlets are wired. You're allowed to put 10 outlets on a 20A circuit even though each outlet could pull 12A.... 'cause 99.9% of the time you're not going to have more than one thing plugged into that circuit pulling 12A. If you try to run a vacuum and a space heater the breaker trips... no fire... just a tripped breaker. You reset the breaker and move on with life ;)
 
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SageBrush

REJECT Fascism
May 7, 2015
12,159
15,081
New Mexico
If you try to run a vacuum and a space heater the breaker trips... no fire... just a tripped breaker. You reset the breaker and move on with life ;)
I'm slightly more educated about home electricity these days than in my not soo distant past, but I can still remember first learning about breakers and being rather smug about my ability to flip it back and then trying the same electrical device again. And again.

<shudder>

----
So while your comment sounds correct to me, you may wish to keep in mind that the general understanding of most people amounts to knowing where the receptacle is on the wall, and figuring that if the pins can be +/- stuffed in the holes then all is well. It would probably serve the populace well to be punched in the face and be instructed that the experience was only a fraction of the power running through their home wires.
 
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holmgang

Active Member
Sep 9, 2019
1,266
1,269
eu
I used to swear by NG cook top, but my wife always hated the idea of having a gas leak, so when it came time to replace ours I did some reseach and switched to induction. That was a fantastic choice. I've since convinced my sister-in-law to get one too.

There is one drawback that I've noticed so far. With my flat cook top, it's not really possible to use a curved wok, the pan always has to be in "contact" with the element.

Other than that, I'm in love. Here are a few things that I'd like to point out:
1. No CO or other emmisions in the house!
2. Element is cool to the touch, it's only hot for a short period of time due to the contact with the pans.
3. CONTROL. There are some things that I'd typically need a double boiler for (melting chocolate for example). With this cooktop, I just have to turn down the temperature and I don't have to worry about burning the chocolate.. the pan just gets warm instead of really hot right under the NG flame and cold elsewhere.

I have a portable butane stove I use for Wok cooking. For heavier duty stuff, propane.

CONTROL is actually my drawback for induction:
(1) dont have the fine variability of controlling the gas flame AND temporarily lifting the pan (distance to flame)
(2) cant hold and tilt pan (for basting) or slide pan across flame for partial contact/local cooking (since the induction is binary on or off)
(3) 99.9% of induction stoves are touch controls which are fussy to use, dont behave well with wet fingers, go haywire when theres moisture on the surface, etc

the other biggie is that the ceramic/smoothtop is more fragile than burner grates. must be careful using heavier and rougher cookware, such as cast irons. (a trick i use is to layer paper towel or baking paper on the inudction stove, the magnetic effect will work right through it)


so induction is far better than traditional electric range, but i still prefer natural gas overall
 
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Big Earl

bnkwupt
Jul 12, 2017
5,047
9,066
Springfield, VA
My experience with induction isn’t quite as good. My parents bought a Jenn Air induction range when they built a house in 2014. It, of course, performs as you’d expect - powerful, efficient, easy cleanup. However, it has some quirks...
  • It makes lots of high pitch buzzes and pinging sounds.
  • Its adjustment is only 10 steps. I often find myself wanting additional half steps, particularly when cooking bacon.
  • Touch interface can be frustrating at times.
  • Everything @holmgang said
But the biggest problem is its idle consumption of 370 (yes, three-hundred and seventy) watts! Numerous calls to Jenn Air’s tech support have resulted in no satisfactory resolution or even a plausible explanation of what it’s doing with all of that power. As far as I can tell, it doesn’t get warm, so I’m at a loss. Jenn Air suggested it was a feature to smooth dirty incoming power because something something sensitive electronics. :confused:

Anyway, rather than replace the entire unit, they keep the circuit breakers off when it isn’t in use. This has resulted in a dramatic reduction in energy consumption with only minimal extra effort on their part.

picture below: they began switching off the circuit breakers in mid-June this year, after we installed the Emporia energy monitoring system at the end of 2019.

BE288829-073F-4C95-8BD6-5A53AF9EBC62.png


Has anyone else seen this sort of thing? Any idea what’s going on?
 
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nwdiver

Well-Known Member
Feb 17, 2013
7,604
9,704
United States
My experience with induction isn’t quite as good. My parents bought a Jenn Air induction range when they built a house in 2014. It, of course, performs as you’d expect - powerful, efficient, easy cleanup. However, it has some quirks...
  • It makes lots of high pitch buzzes and pinging sounds.
  • Its adjustment is only 10 steps. I often find myself wanting additional half steps, particularly when cooking bacon.
  • Touch interface can be frustrating at times.
  • Everything @holmgang said
But the biggest problem is its idle consumption of 370 (yes, three-hundred and seventy) watts! Numerous calls to Jenn Air’s tech support have resulted in no satisfactory resolution or even a plausible explanation of what it’s doing with all of that power. As far as I can tell, it doesn’t get warm, so I’m at a loss. Jenn Air suggested it was a feature to smooth dirty incoming power because something something sensitive electronics. :confused:

Anyway, rather than replace the entire unit, they keep the circuit breakers off when it isn’t in use. This has resulted in a dramatic reduction in energy consumption with only minimal extra effort on their part.

picture below: they began switching off the circuit breakers in mid-June this year, after we installed the Emporia energy monitoring system at the end of 2019.

View attachment 612163

Has anyone else seen this sort of thing? Any idea what’s going on?

Might be worth trying out a newer cooktop. Induction is certainly far more complex than gas or resistive electric so there are a lot more ways to make it worse... or better. One of the reasons I may have ignored induction until recently was probably due to the induction cooktop we had in our break room at work. It had 2 settings... low and surface of the sun. It was also somewhat noisy. But... it was a 2010 model and it appears they've come along way in 10 years.
 
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phigment

Member
Aug 31, 2015
651
1,045
Waterloo, Ontario
My experience with induction isn’t quite as good. My parents bought a Jenn Air induction range when they built a house in 2014. It, of course, performs as you’d expect - powerful, efficient, easy cleanup. However, it has some quirks...
  • It makes lots of high pitch buzzes and pinging sounds.
  • Its adjustment is only 10 steps. I often find myself wanting additional half steps, particularly when cooking bacon.
  • Touch interface can be frustrating at times.
  • Everything @holmgang said
But the biggest problem is its idle consumption of 370 (yes, three-hundred and seventy) watts! Numerous calls to Jenn Air’s tech support have resulted in no satisfactory resolution or even a plausible explanation of what it’s doing with all of that power. As far as I can tell, it doesn’t get warm, so I’m at a loss. Jenn Air suggested it was a feature to smooth dirty incoming power because something something sensitive electronics. :confused:

Anyway, rather than replace the entire unit, they keep the circuit breakers off when it isn’t in use. This has resulted in a dramatic reduction in energy consumption with only minimal extra effort on their part.

picture below: they began switching off the circuit breakers in mid-June this year, after we installed the Emporia energy monitoring system at the end of 2019.

View attachment 612163

Has anyone else seen this sort of thing? Any idea what’s going on?
Wow, 370W? That's insane. Thr power meter hooked up to my stove breaker says 8.8W idle right now.

As for the whining, yes, mine does that too, but it's mainly one of the elements. I must admit, that is annoying.

Mine is a Frigidaire and has physical knobs and goes from low to 10, plus power boost and has an indicator precision of 0.5. It does seem continuous levels though as I can see the pan change temp with even slight tweaks to the knobs.
 
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ladysbff

Member
Jul 26, 2019
348
599
Traveling the universe
Cal-Mil 3633-60 Bamboo Countertop Induction Cooker - 120V, 1600W

I've had this for 4 years with 100% mixed renewables electricity. It gets the job done but agree with everything @holmgang and @Big Earl said. The frustrating thing is not being able to pick the pan up off the cooktop without it turning off. Also I've found I am more likely to accidentally burn oil.

I do think some of the control/temperature issues could be solved if I spent more time practicing and writing down the settings/technique.

If you have small hands like me, the heavy cookware makes it even harder to flip/toss food, which I feel robs me of part of the pleasure of cooking :D

The whirring sound used to annoy me more but I guess I'm used to that noise now due to driving Tesla.
 

SalisburySam

Supporting Member
Aug 11, 2018
261
316
Salisbury, North Carolina
Reno’d our kitchen in 2014-2015 with new appliances and needed a 48” range. I’ve cooked on natural gas cooktops and ranges for decades and like them. But I wanted to investigate induction. No 48” range then or now comes with induction burners so we got a dual-fuel model (GE Monogram) that has 4 gas burners, two electric ovens, an IR griddle and IR grill both gas-fired. Serves our needs well. But we still wanted induction so we installed a Miele induction burner on its own next to our range. Have loved it since we got it. We rarely use the gas burners for anything unless we need to simultaneously use more than the one induction burner.

Some thoughts about our experience:
1- there is no buzz, no whine, no noise
2- there is one simple control, an infinitely-variable knob from “off” to “boost” and no touch-panels...excellent control
3- idle energy consumption less than 0.3 watts
4- picking up the pan turns the unit off with an error light...putting the pan back cancels the error. No heat lost.
5- almost no way to burn oil (or anything else) since there is no flame. Flambé foods need a separate flame source (kitchen match?)
6- Wok cooking is totally possible...we do it all the time. The difference is you have to use a wok with a flat bottom, not one of the curved carbon-steel woks most people are used to. All-Clad makes a set of 3, they work fabulously well, and the induction heat is better than that generated by any residential gas burner.
7- Ours is wired to a dedicated 240v circuit and can’t remember amperage, and our range has its own 240v 50amp circuit, primarily for the ovens during self-clean cycles.

Cooking (and cleaning!) on induction is just such a better experience than gas, even after decades of happy gassing and a lot of skepticism at first. Can’t wait for the first 48” range with induction burners, grill, and griddle. I’m in.
 

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