Induction Hobs

Soldato
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Who has one and how do you find it?
I've used electric (hated them) and gas (love them) hobs before, but never tried induction.

I'm shortly going to be moving into a new place that has an induction hob so wanted to get feedback from those who have used them.
Most of my pans are magnetic, so they should all be fine. The few that aren't could do with being replaced anyway.

I'm currently wondering how to do things like stir frys that involve the use of a wok though?
 
Soldato
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Who has one and how do you find it?
I don't have one in my current dwelling, but I cook on them regularly and I absolutely love them.

The sheer level of control, when paired with appropriate cookware, is a joy to behold. Easy to use, easy to clean and generally a wonderful innovation in the kitchen.

But as with everything, quality makes all the difference. Some of the cheaper models and older designs are really absolutely bloody useless and will make your blood boil before your pot of water does.

I'm currently wondering how to do things like stir frys that involve the use of a wok though?
You either use a flat-bottomed wok that's suitable for induction, buy an induction 'cradle' type affair or invest in a small portable gas-burning stove for those times when you need it.
 
Soldato
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I have an induction hob and I love it, excellent to cook with and far far superior to halogen.

We don't have mains gas to these houses, so an electric oven/hob is my only choice, and I'm very glad I changed. Just need to make sure your pans have a ferromagnetic base, so no copper or aluminium bases, but most pans nowadays say if they are suitable.

I just have a pretty basic model and I find it great, but the features on some of the high end ones look great.
 
Soldato
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Cheers for the replies. I moved in last weekend, but so far have been living off microwave meals and frozen pizza while I get sorted so haven't used the hob yet.
I have stuck a pan on it and it gets hot pretty quickly though.

Hopefully should be doing some proper cooking on it this week, so will see how it goes.
 
Soldato
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So, I've had a few weeks using my induction hob now and I thought I'd give my thoughts for anyone that may be considering getting one.

Things I like.

The lack of flames. This makes it easier not to burn things! With gas I'd often leave a wooden spoon in a pan on full heat and come back to find it's charred from the flame :o

It seems pretty responsive, turned a pan down from full to low and almost immediately the rolling boil turned to a simmer.

Much easier to clean than a gas hob as it's just one big flat surface.

Things I don't like.

The main one for me is how the heat is applied. You basically get a circle of heat and then not much else. This means that things catch much easier than when using gas.
It also means that large dishes only have heat applied to a part of the base, again I find gas much better in this regard as the flame envelops the pan more.
I was caramelising some onions today in a large oval Le Creuset which is bigger than the induction surface. (I do it in big batches and then freeze portions) and found if I wasn't keeping an eye on it the whole time I'd get a circle on the bottom of the pan where things caught a bit.

The controls. This may just be my model, but to change a heat setting I have to press a button to select which induction plate I want, then use + and - buttons to select the heat level. I much prefer several simple knobs to control things.

The lack of flames. Even though it's handy not having flames for the reasons I mentioned above there's something in the fact that you can see the size of the flame that I prefer. I really dislike not having any visual cue about how much heat is being applied.


I was planning on redoing the kitchen at some point in the next year or two anyway and I definitely think I'm going to go back to a gas hob then. I definitely prefer induction to electric, but for me gas can't be beaten.
 
Associate
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With induction it is meant to be more important to match the pans to the size of the "burners", i don't know if this is possibly causing the problem of catching.

Oh and be careful about boiling pans dry - they can be very fast to heat up.
 
Man of Honour
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I haven't used one, but as someone else Sid quality.
Gas is different, even a cheap hob will be good, you have truly variable control.
With electric and induction is. No different you don't have truly veritable controls. However on the expensive ones you can have 32levels +, expensive ones can also do fancy things and recognise size and shape of pan and heat according area, so not so limit by ring size.

Basically you can't skimp on price.
 
Soldato
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The main one for me is how the heat is applied. You basically get a circle of heat and then not much else. This means that things catch much easier than when using gas.
I'd say that was, to one degree or another, a common issue with all forms of electrically-powered hobs. Being essentially a fixed heat source, you'll find that the heat tends to go straight up rather than across, as gas would.

It does also highlight the efficiency of your cookware!

It also means that large dishes only have heat applied to a part of the base, again I find gas much better in this regard as the flame envelops the pan more.
That's the one positive about gas - it's more mobile source of heat than electric and really does tend to envelop the base of the pan and spread the heat around nicely.

I was caramelising some onions today in a large oval Le Creuset which is bigger than the induction surface.
It may well be that your choice of pan is limiting you here - the thermal conductivity properties of cast iron will limit you with any 'fixed' heat source that is smaller than the footprint of the pan itself.

Aluminium is a much better choice for cooking on an electric hob, although it obviously needs to be paired with a stainless steel baseplate to work with an induction.

The controls. This may just be my model, but to change a heat setting I have to press a button to select which induction plate I want, then use + and - buttons to select the heat level. I much prefer several simple knobs to control things.
Actually, it's not just your model.

Designers of induction hobs seem to have been watching too much Star Trek and insist upon a complicated series of button presses to perform tasks which would be more easily achieved via a single dial.

I've used a really nice Neff hob which has a detachable magnetic dial that you can pop on the controls when you need to adjust something and some of the higher-end models are starting to feature individual touch-sensitive dials for each induction surface, but it's still all a bit fiddly if you ask me.
 
Man of Honour
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Only £4k they are the dogs dangles though.

Edit - actually I was thinking that was the gaggenau cx range.
 
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Associate
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Just had a bit of a nightmare with two Whirlpool Induction Hobs.
The first one was installed brand new on the 6th of November. On Sunday 23rd of November 2014 it failed as there was a loud 'bang' somewhere deep inside the unit.
We called Whirlpool out to it on the 24th November 2014 as they didn't work on Sundays and the engineer turned-up to take a look at the hob on the 28th of November. He announced that it had gone short circuit, but there was nothing he could do about it as there were no spares available for that model.
To cut a long story short we insisted on a new replacement hob which arrived yesterday 1st of December 2014. This was immediately installed and it worked ok for one day. First thing this morning my wife tried to cook her porridge on it, and the blessed thing packed-up, blowing it's dedicated MCB.
Whirlpool have said they will come out to 'have a look' at it next Friday the 5th of December 2014 which means that in a total of 30 days of ownership we have been able to use our hob for 17 days.
This is not good news, particularly as I am a Diabetic and need to cook my food fresh.
Needless to say that I am not overly happy with Whirlpool.
 
Soldato
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Wouldn't bother, I've tried them and I don't like them.

Gas you can see what heat it's chucking out just by eying the flame, instant control, simple old technology that'll never break down, you can use any pan, roast peppers, light cigarettes, burn off the face of your enemies. Gas hobs are the best.

Induction just doesn't have it, better than electric but not as good as gas.
 
Soldato
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Individual controls per ring.
Much more efficient than gas, electric etc.
Instant change in heat.
Number that shows how much heat is being supplied. (I know it is induction...)
Easy to clean.
Can lift a pan off and the hob goes to standby, won't set your tea towel on fire if you throw it onto the hob whilst it is still on!
Can heat a pan of water to boiling faster than any other method, even faster than a good kettle.
 
Associate
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We've got an induction hob (Bosch). Everything delta says is true, but I really miss gas cooking, especially when using the wok.

The hob has developed a fault where the two rings on the left won't work unless both are being used... so at some point it's going to be repaired, but I am considering sacking it off and putting a gas range in. I suppose it depends on what kind of cooking you generally do as the induction does have a lot of plus points.
 
Associate
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I have a dedietrich induction hob which is pretty good considering what I paid (£100).

Its not as good as the hotpoint one the GFs parents have but it works well. Good heat control and it heats up quicker than gas. Big positive is how easy it is to clean compared to the electric hob in our old flat.

Only problem is the touch controls and how they lock when they get wet.
 
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