- Different heat outputs including ultra rapid heat burners and power boost settings to give flexibility for quick boiling, simmering and stir-frying
- Different shapes and sizes cooking zones including elongated fish kettle/casserole zone and zoneless options for optimum flexibility
- Removable controls
- Safety controls that reduce the chances of burns, scalds and fires
- Flame failure protection (Gas)
- Auto Ignition (Gas)
- Easy cleaning removable coated pan supports (Gas)
- Overspill and timeout cutout function (Electric/Induction)
- Dual element zones (Electric/Induction)
- Hot Hob warning light (Electric/Induction)
- Auto time switch off (Electric/Induction)
- Built-in BBQ grill
- Domino hob with combined different zones (e.g. burners + wok burner/ griddle/bbq)
- Dual fuel
- Flat griddle
- Tappanyaki plate
- SIZE. Range cookers tend to be bigger than standard cookers - usually 90cm, 100cm or 110cm wide. Some of the custom built models can be even larger than this.
- COOKING CONFIGURATION. Many range cookers have between 5+ hob rings/burners, 2 ovens, separate grill and storage/warning drawer. Larger models offer more rings/burners, bigger and/or additional ovens.
- HOB TYPE. There are ranges with gas, ceramic and induction hobs and with dual fuel options. Some of the more expensive makes and models offer additional hob features such as griddle plates, wok burners and deep fat frying units.
- SELF- CLEANING. Many range cookers come with catalytic liners or pyrolytic self-cleaning functions
Microwaves and Compacts
- COOKING FUNCTIONS. There are 3 types of microwave - simple, combi oven and combi grill. Microwaves are available in freestanding and built-in/integrated versions. Some now offer a steaming function.
- FEATURES. Basic microwaves are best at their simplest - with on/off and time controls. More expensive models offer additional features such as digital displays, pre-set cooking and auto defrost programmes. Some combi microwaves come with auto/self clean functions.
- CONSISTENCY AND RELIABILITY. Which? tests have found quite big differences in consistency of cooking/defrosting results and in reliability between difference microwave model
- TYPE. There are built-in, chimney, freestanding, integrated and island cooker hoods. Some innovative brands are now introducing hoods that are integrated into built-in hobs.
- SIZE. You want the cooker hood to be effective across the full width of your hob.
- FILTERS All cooker hoods have grease filters that catch grease as it rises from your hob. These can be aluminium, stainless steel, fleece material or paper - which have to be replaced or cleaned regularly to maintain efficiency. Some hoods have a filter full indicator.
- NOISE The noise level of cooker hoods varies - Which? tests found noise ranges from 54dB to 74dB
- CONTROLS Most cooker hood controls are either on the front or underside of the hood. Some models have remote control.
- POWER SETTINGS Most cooker hoods have two or three speeds and some have a high burst power setting to deal with strong smell and lots of steam
- LIGHT Most cooker hoods come with two plus lights to increase the light level while you cook