The induction hob is an excellent alternative for electric hobs. However, instead of traditional heating elements (such as a heater or a gas burner), induction hob uses so-called electromagnetic coils. Induction of current causes the conversion of electricity into heat. This way, not only our pots but also our food get the right temperature.
One of the numerous advantages of this modern solution is a wide selection of hobs that can be tailor-made depending on the needs of cooks – and, as you can imagine – of our kitchens.
First: the right size
Currently, stainless-steel induction hobs come in nearly all possible sizes. Single and double burner cooktops are 30 cm wide which makes them a perfect fit for small, cosy kitchens in studio flats. This solution was created for people that live alone and cook mostly one-plate dishes. The most popular induction cooktops have four zones and at least 60 cm of width. The biggest hobs used in commercial cooking have even up to five high power burners and are 90 cm wide.
Of course, in addition to those “conventional” sizes, there are also models with non-standard dimensions up to 120 cm wide.
Second: the power
The power of induction hobs is expressed with the symbol kW and ranges between 2.8kW to 12kW. The lowest value refers to single-phase cooktops, and if you need higher power, you would need a double- or three-phase power supply. Top models having the five high power burners mentioned above can reach capacity from 10 to 12 kW. Should you choose this type of a hob, make sure you have a three-phase power supply installed.
Third: types of zones.
Currently, there are three types of zones.
- Circular – of a diameter between 14 and 26 cm.
- Rectangular – most commonly resembling a square or a rectangular shape measuring 22 x 19 cm.
- Bridge – shapes composed of several coils that finally resemble an oval or a rectangle. Their function is to evenly heat the dishes regardless of where you put them on the zone.
Fourth: extra features
In addition to classic features of induction hobs, many manufacturers offer models with interesting extra features for added value. Among those options, you can find:
- Booster – a quick-cooking option allowing you to turn the cooktop on for a short time with the maximum power of the coil,
- Timer – time-setting feature for a given, single zone,
- Pause – the possibility to pause heating for a given time,
- Hob&Go – it turns the hob on once you put a dish on it,
- Preset programs – presets of cooking temperatures, excellent for beginner cooks.
Fifth: controller types.
The primary controller uses the plus-minus function. For instance, if you want to set the power to level 3, you would need to press “plus” three times. The controller comes in two variants: the most basic one is used for all zones on the hob. For a lot of cooks, this solution is hardly intuitive, that is why cooktops with several controllers (one for each zone) gain much more interest. This option is also much more popular, mainly due to a simple structure and ease of use.