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CabbageHead's picture

stoves (post #53945)

I'm building a house and will be buying new appliances.  Any tips on choices for stoves?  Gas vs electric ovens?  Brands?  I was surprised to read in a recent Consumer Reports issue that Viking scored the almost the lowest of the brands/models in overall performance but cost the most ($3890), and two Maytag models and the GE Profile Performance were rated highest (GE model $1350).

Also, over 25% of sub-zero refrigerators required repairs for serious problems, which is more than double the repair rate of the next closest brand.

Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.  (Source: Consumer Reports, August, 2002)

Thanks in advance.  

kai230's picture

(post #53945, reply #1 of 36)

Lucky you, Dan! Have you looked in the Equipment folder?

MadMom's picture

(post #53945, reply #2 of 36)

Dan - I agree with you about SubZero (or rather, I agree with consumer reports).  We insisted the builder put in a SubZero fridge/freezer in our last home, and I never cared for it.  Extremely loud, just didn't seem to work right at all.  We've got a GE now and never have any problems.  I looked at Viking before we moved, and that was what I really wanted, but heard so many bad things about them.  I know we had a guy who posted here a lot who sold Vikings, and he thought they were wonderful (go figure?) but I ended up buying a Dacor gas cooktop and Dacor electric wall ovens.  Have been quite happy with them.  Only minor glitches had to do with the venting, which I think was an installation problem (our builder was an idiot) and Dacor not only fixed it, they replaced the fan with a newer bigger model, at no cost. 

Things are going to get a lot worse before they get worse.
Lily Tomlin

CabbageHead's picture

(post #53945, reply #3 of 36)

What about gas vs electric ovens? is there any prevailing preference?

Wolvie's picture

(post #53945, reply #4 of 36)

electric, 2 ovens, one convection one reg seems to be the best. Cook top - gas/propane. At least, that's what I have decided on.

Woe to the cook whose sauce has no sting
- Chaucer


PeterDurand's picture

(post #53945, reply #6 of 36)

I agree.

BondFBond's picture

(post #53945, reply #7 of 36)

I have a Frigidare Gallery flat-top electric (convection) and I love it! Mine has a warming drawer which I use frequently. I read in CR before that mine has a bit higher repair rate than some other brands but I've had no problems at all and I did get the repair thingee option just in case.  I would have liked gas but can't get gas here on my street.  Mire Poix has the same kind but his is propane-fueled and he hates it.  He wished he had mine after he saw mine...

I have an Amana buick - big-a__ fridge with the freezer on the bottom and I will never have any other brand/type.  I will also never own a fridge again with the freezer on top...  worth every penny.

Biscuits's picture

(post #53945, reply #8 of 36)

And I agree with Peter and Wolvie - definitely double oven, definitely electric.  Definitely gas cooktop - 4 burners if you don't cook, 6 if you do. 

Also - I heard that SubZero isn't what it used to be, literally.  It used to be a top-notch item, fetching a top notch price, but the efficiency and low repair were worth it.  They were bought by some other company, who started to skimp on material and production, and it certainly shows. 

I have heard nothing but good things about the Kitchenaid line, if you are looking for something middle of the road.  That's what I've been considering for this house.  I also heard that KA gives you a deal if you buy the whole package - refrigerator, stove, oven and dishwasher.  But you'd have to check with a dealer for that.

If I could, I'd buy a refrigerator with the freezer on the bottom.  I hate the side-by-sides (personal preference) and I just think it would be so much more efficient to have the freezer on the bottom.

Just my thoughts.



wtf    Biscuit

Ancora Imparo -

madnoodle's picture

(post #53945, reply #9 of 36)


A friend of mine with two little kids has a fridge with the bottom freezer.  She loves it, but hates that her kids can easily get at the ice cream and popsicles, but can't reach the milk and juice. 


Canada:  where different coloured money makes sense.

What if there were no hypothetical questions?


Biscuits's picture

(post #53945, reply #10 of 36)

Hmmm, never thought of that.  But at this stage, I'd love it if Max couldn't get in the fridge.  Ever had a 2 year old attempt to make a jelly sandwich before?  No good, as Max would say. (G)



wtf    Biscuit

Ancora Imparo -

Tuck's picture

(post #53945, reply #14 of 36)

Reminds me of this

"Crisp crusts crackle crunchily"

mar06x59.jpg26.64 KB
Biscuits's picture

(post #53945, reply #15 of 36)

OMG!  Were you in my house?!  That's my fridge!  My child!  I swear!  (lol)  Really, it does look just like my fridge and my child...weird...



wtf    - Biscuit

Ancora Imparo -

JoeB2's picture

(post #53945, reply #13 of 36)

Gas, definatly. It's been a couple of years since I was shopping for a high-end stove but I would look hard at Viking, Wolf, Garland, and DCS (though I was unsatisfied with my DCS, perhaps they've gotten better)

Also, if you're building think about getting a hood and vent system installed. It really helps moving out the heat and smoke (when things go awry). If you're building or remodelling new its the prime time to install a hood. Can't beat the added lighting either for cooking.

I'm glad I have six burners and really glad I have two ovens. The griddle I could do without but I use it weekly.

Glenys's picture

(post #53945, reply #16 of 36)

I just purchased a Five Star with (six burners/griddle/dual heat ovens) and one of the pluses, to me, is one oven that's electric convection and one gas. If I could have configured wall ovens in this space, I would have happily had electric ovens with gas cooktop but the space just wouldn't work.

It's interesting at school we have some Viking gas ovens that no can longer be serviced. They seem simple enough but they just can't seem to get them up and running.

I opted for the Five Star because of the burner system (same as my previous range) and the configuration. No red knobs however.

Alsgal's picture

(post #53945, reply #33 of 36)

Electric ovens absolutely.  Electric ovens are consistent.  Am renting at the moment while the new house is being built and it has a gas oven.  I never seems to be able to make up it's own mind about the temperature it keeps.  Also, clean stinks.

BondFBond's picture

(post #53945, reply #34 of 36)

Totally off-topic but is Faithie/Faith your real name?  Mine is Faith.  Cool.

hambiscuit2's picture

(post #53945, reply #5 of 36)

I just installed a Thermador dual fuel slide-in range a few weeks ago and love everything about it. Wonderful gas burners for stovetop cooking and they have enough heat to stirfry/saute beautifully. The low heat burners have extra-low settings for perfect simmer. The oven is nice and large and I love the convection! My particular model is a down draft which I needed since we weren't starting with a newly built kitchen.

I Looked at the Kenmore stoves because they were rated highly by Consumer Reports and the price was right, but didn't like the knobs on top of the stove. Their models also have a flat top surface so any spills will runover onto the floor (I'm messy).



Edited 3/5/2003 2:58:21 PM ET by Hambiscuit

Syb's picture

(post #53945, reply #11 of 36)

I vote gas or propane for the burners.

You may or may not be looking for this input, but I think it's worth considering.   We bought a new range about a year ago after years of using a really old one.  I'm still thrilled with the fact that my knobs are under the overhanging surface (Does that make sense?), so that splatters no longer land on the knobs.  The old ones were always so hard to keep clean.  Now I almost never clean my knobs.   Many of the new ranges are built like this, but I know that many are not.  

kai230's picture

(post #53945, reply #12 of 36)

I'm still thrilled with the fact that my knobs are under the overhanging surface that splatters no longer land on the knobs

See, how practical is that? Any other designers listening? Hello.

Flavourgirl's picture

(post #53945, reply #17 of 36)

We will be re-modeling our kitchen this spring. With all my research (and also lots of time spelunking in the Equipment folder archives) I've decided to buy Dacor 48" dual fuel range. First, it has 14" grates - I can have two of my large pots/skillets side by side without one of them having to be pushed off center. Second, Dacor's second oven is a good size - a half sheet pan will fit in it. Some of the other 48" ranges were ruled out because the second oven wasn't wide enough - Thermador, Kitchen Aid, Viking, just to name a few.

Anyone have a good source for 48" ranges?? I've gotten two price quotes so far and they were both $7340 for the Dacor 48". That?s a lot of money and I?ve gone back a forth on getting a 30? Dacor and then a second oven. It saves money but I loose some under counter space, gain more top cabinets space, and counter space but after factoring in the additional cost for cabinets and granite, I will only save a little bit. DH says spend the money and get exactly what I want. I think he?s right.

I agree that the freezer on the bottom is the way to go - the concept seems so intuitive. (Biscuit ? Max will only keep on growing). I looked at the Kenmore Trio but it's too huge for my space. So I've decided on an Amana. .

Dishwasher will be a Bosch integrated. Sink is a Elkay double bowl with integrated drain board ? under-mounted. There will also be a prep sink in the island. The floors will be white oak (to match existing floors in foyer and dining room). And the cabinets will be natural maple.

I can?t wait until it?s done but dread all the hard work and inconvenience ahead. Everyone I?ve talked to so far that has had a remodel says it?s a nightmare. Plan for the worst and hope for the best is all I can say.

Any pointers, suggestions would be welcome??

MadMom's picture

(post #53945, reply #18 of 36)

Eve - The best prices we got on a Dacor were 1) through our builder and 2) from Home Depot Expo.  When we bought our Dacor (cooktop plus wall ovens) we got a pretty good price through the people who sold our builder all his appliances (he had just never bought Dacor before!).  When we bought the 36" for DD's kitchen in Colorado, I went to Home Depot Expo and got a written quote from them.  Then, the local appliance company in Durango matched the price (saved us about 25% from what they originally quoted.)  Definitely look around, and if you're having a contractor do the remodel, ask them about their sources. 

I think you'll really like the Dacor.  We have been very happy with ours, and DD loves hers.  I'll give you my standard warning, though...if you get a self-cleaning oven, run it once while you're out of the house.  If it's like ours, it will burn your eyes and run you out of the house the first time it's run.  We called Dacor, assuming it was a real problem, and they told us they all are like that the first time, and they recommend that the installer run it through the self-cleaning cycle before people move into the house.  Needless to say, our idiot builder didn't bother to do so.

Things are going to get a lot worse before they get worse.
Lily Tomlin

favorablyimpressed's picture

(post #53945, reply #19 of 36)

 I've decided to buy Dacor 48" dual fuel range.

Me too, me too!  In fact, it sounds like we could end up with almost identical kitchens, FlavourGirl!  I started my research a year ago, and the Equipment folder was a big help.  At one time, I knew the specs of all the 48" ranges.  I love all the Dacor features you mentioned, and especially the size of the two ovens.  I expect to use the small oven frequently, and the 15" width of the Dacor seems much larger than all the other brands at 12 inches. 

We, too, will have the Bosch integrated dishwasher and an Elkay undermount sink.  Unfortunately, we only have room for a single sink.  Granite counters and full backsplash.  Our floors will be ceramic tile.

We will keep our SubZero, bottom-freezer, refrigerator, which I love, although we've had our share of problems with it.  Apparently the 500 series had serious issues, which have now been resolved.

Our addition has been started.  So far, they're still working outside.  It will be a few more weeks before they partition off our kitchen and it becomes a "restricted area."  My freezer is full of food to get us by.  It will be a difficult few months, I know.



CabbageHead's picture

(post #53945, reply #20 of 36)

Do any of you have steam injectors in your ovens?  Are they expensive or even available as an option?  I currently use a pan heated in the oven and a spray bottle to spray the walls and back (as instructed by  Peter Reinhart in "The Bread Baker's Apprentice) but I don't know if I'm hurting the oven somehow.  And I'm scared of water dripping or splashing onto the heating elements.  Any Thoughts?

courgette's picture

(post #53945, reply #21 of 36)

I just installed a Dacor Epicure 30" range last week. It was a big change for me as I had solid electric burners and no convection. I love it!  I can't believe how fast things cook over gas-I have sooo much more time now! Not really, but I can get supper on the table faster which will mean less take-out. I've only done one cake and it turned out great. I will be doing my first stir-fry tonight and that will be a big test but it can't help but be better than what I had before.The only slightly negative thing I have noticed so far is that all the pot handles get really hot which never happened on the electric.  I just need to get used to using holders.

I chose the Dacor because it met all my requirements-sealed burners (I'm messy) 4 x 15,000 btu burners, self cleaning (i'm lazy) and a timer on the oven-I know some people don't like this feature but I use it all the time and couldn't imagine being without it. Oh, and I got the pretty brass trim to match my pulls.  I suggest you make a list of the features you want and then see who makes the best match for the way you cook. Good luck.


My cats are very happy when the oven is on as it vents out the bottom and gives them a cozy place. When we moved to this house we no longer had floor vents to sleep on!

kai230's picture

(post #53945, reply #22 of 36)

all the pot handles get really hot

Does this happen even when at a medium or low heat? If the flame is high enough to extend beyond the bottom of the pan, the handles will get hot.

courgette's picture

(post #53945, reply #27 of 36)

The flame is not larger than the pot but maybe the pot is the problem. My pots are cuisinart circa 1985-they probably make the handles differently now. Thanks for the suggestion though


kai230's picture

(post #53945, reply #28 of 36)

Hmmm, I don't see how it could be the pot if it didn't happen w/your old stove....

BondFBond's picture

(post #53945, reply #29 of 36)

Omgosh, all you people and your 6 burners.  I forgot there are kitchens that can actually hold a large stove...sigh.  I'm jealous.

gjander's picture

(post #53945, reply #30 of 36)

I have a similar problem on my Dacor Epicure 36".  I use All-Clad pans and don't find that the handles get hot, but if I leave a utensil (such as a wooden spoon) in a pan the heat coming up around the sides of the pan can get it very hot--I think it would burn if I left it in long enough.  I've just gotten more careful about it.  I also have an insulated sleeve that goes over pot handles to prevent me from grabbing (again) a hot handle after a pan has been in the oven.  I have found that it is susceptible to burning if I move the pan to the stove top for deglazing.  I would think that these are problems on any high output burners though--not specifically a Dacor problem.



MadMom's picture

(post #53945, reply #31 of 36)

Gary - We have a Dacor cooktop, and I have no problem with AllClad handles getting hot.  Interestingly, though, I had Cuisinart stainless pots that gave me no problems with an electric stove, but the handles got hot on the gas cooktop.  Have no idea why. 

Things are going to get a lot worse before they get worse.
Lily Tomlin

Flavourgirl's picture

(post #53945, reply #23 of 36)

What kind of prices have you found on the Dacor? Today, I went to a local distributor and they have a 48" Dacor that was returned by a customer. Apparently it had a scratch on the front. We couldn't see any at all. I wonder if this was the real problem. Anyway, if we bought it the full warranty is in effect. It is in good shape. It was returned last summer so it has been sitting there for awhile. The price is listed at $6250.

Which model Bosch are you getting? I choose the 4 cycle one because I don't think I'd use all the cycles with 6 or 9 cycle model.