Guide to Cooktops

Cooktop : What is it?


Cooktops, also called hotplates, are small stoves with one or more burners at the top. Unlike regular stoves, they consist simply of burners and do not include grills and ovens. They are usually placed on countertops and connected to an underwater gas tank or power socket. They are commonly used in small homes with limited floor space for a full-size range. Some cooktops are portable and designed to be used on campsites and outdoor trips.

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Types of Cooktops


Kinds of Cooktops include the following:

General types

Gas cooktops

  • Gas cooktops are powered by propane or liquefied petroleum gas (LPG).
  • They have faster response and have easier temperature controls.
  • They are ideal for outdoor use because they do not require AC power to operate.

Electric cooktops

  • Electric cooktops use electrical energy to generate heat and transfer it to the pan.
  • They are more expensive to operate because they require constant power flow.
  • They are available in coil, solid, and ceramic plate models.

Types of electric cooktops

Radiant coil cooktops

  • Radiant coil cooktops use heating coils to deliver heat from the burner to the pan.
  • They have relatively fast response and high power efficiency.
  • They usually hinge upwards to facilitate cleaning of spillage bowls.

Solid cooktops

  • Solid cooktops have flat burners that heat up from the center outwards.
  • They are slightly slower and less efficient, but they retain heat better.
  • They require more maintenance to maintain even heating of the burners.

Ceramic cooktops

  • Ceramic cooktops have ceramic plate burners covered with flat glass panels.
  • They are easier to clean because the glass top does not absorb dirt and stains.
  • However, they have the lowest efficiency and response speed.

Induction cooktops

  • Induction cooktops have heated inductor coils that create magnetic fields upon contact with the pan.
  • They have immediate response and fine temperature controls.
    They cannot be used with standard glass, stainless steel, aluminum, copper-based, and earthenware vessels.

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Choosing Cooktops (Buying tips)

Burners: Choose a cooktop with various burner sizes if you have several different pans. Make sure the burners are easy to clean and will not rust or stain easily. Also, make sure there is enough space between the burners to accommodate large cookware.

Look for a cooktop with an efficiency of 65% or higher. This means that 65% of the heat is used for cooking, while the rest is used for producing and maintaining the heat. Induction cooktops usually have the highest efficiency.

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