Is your cooker over 4 years old? Is it looking a bit knackered and worn out? Then I think it is about time you get a new cooker. There are always ways to revamp your current cooker by using repairs and servicing; however with the price of cooker repairs these days, it is often better and cheaper in the long run to buy a new cooker that you can make an effort to maintain this time around.
If you have had a chance to look already, you will notice that there are a lot of different types, makes and models of cookers. The make and model usually just determines the brand and should include a full list of features if you are purchasing it from are reputable company, however there are some main guidelines that can help you decide which cooker is best for you.
The first cooker I am going to explain to you is a freestanding cooker. This simply means the cooker stands free as one unit. A freestanding cooker is a cooker that has the hob and oven joined to make one appliance. This is the most common type of cooker and it can either have a grill on top of the oven but below the hob (which these days they design so it can act as either a grill or oven) or you can have the grill above the hob which usually has a handle bar to pull out the grill tray, these are slowly dying out as they are an old design and aren’t the best aesthetically pleasing choice. Freestanding cookers should be installed by a Gas Safe registered engineer for safety purposes of all those within the property as well as the fact that it is illegal for anyone who is not a Gas Safe registered engineer to install any gas appliance. Freestanding cookers should be connected via a flexible gas hose which connects the gas supply to the cooker securely if fitted properly.
Gas Cookers that fall under the ‘freestanding cooker’ category are range cookers, dual fuel cookers and normal freestanding cookers as these are all one unit and one appliance.
Range cookers are similar to normal freestanding cookers however they are simply bigger. A range cooker usually has more than four hobs on the cooker and has multiple ovens. These are ideal for large kitchens, large families and in households where there may be a lot of people attempting to cook at once. If you like to entertain guests and you want the space to cook various things at the same time, then a range cooker is for you.
A dual fuel freestanding cooker is also similar in looks to the normal freestanding cooker however it uses two sources of energy to operate. A dual fuel cooker usually has an electric oven and a gas hob. This is simply because electric ovens provide more even heating around the food because of the flow of electrical currents, and gas hobs provide more immediate heating and easier temperature controls as electric hobs need time to cool down or heat up to the desired temperature. Alternatively, you can also get dual fuel range cookers which are large dual fuel cookers with more or bigger ovens and 5 or more hobs.
Built in gas cooking appliances are appliances that need to be connected via solid copper piping that are soldered by the gas safe registered engineer. These usually include an oven or a gas hob that are fitted into the desired kitchen space to look more aesthetically pleasing.
A gas oven that is installed is only the oven alone and this allows it to be installed in ways you cannot a cooker. Some people opt to have the hob and oven in separate places, making the oven eye level or otherwise in order to fit into the kitchen more subtly. Also the gas hob, which is just the burners, can fit and be supported by a work top; fitting into the look of your kitchen better and not sticking out as much.
There are quite a few different gas appliances you can purchase for yourself. The pros of a freestanding cooker is that it counts as one appliance so it is usually cheaper to install and if you want a gas certificate or service in the future it would also count as one appliance which makes it cost-effective however, it can stick out and it is not as aesthetically pleasing as gas hob and oven installation which can blend into the work tops and cupboards. The pros of a built in gas oven and hob is that they generally tend to look better when they are part of a kitchen, however, they are two separate appliances so you may have to pay for two installations and if you are a landlord and you need a gas certificate which is your legal requirement, you would have to pay twice each year which may not be cost-effective for you.
So hopefully now you have a general idea of the different types of cookers that are out there and are available for you to purchase. Make sure you know all that is required for your cooker installation and ensure you have a gas safe registered engineer who can install your appliances safely, legally and correctly.