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05 July 2008 @ 03:48 pm
What kind of stove top??  
My oven is dead... kaput... and it's time to buy a new range. I'm considering whether or not to buy one with coil burners, or a smooth top cooking surface. I've only ever used a stove with the coil burners, and I've heard both good and bad things about the smooth tops...

What are your opinions / experiences with the smooth top cooking surfaces? They are supposed to be easier to clean, but it seems that the complaints I've heard about them are exactly related to this, and how NOT easy to clean they are...

Thanks in advance!

UPDATE: Thanks for all of the advice, friendly hipsters! We ended up going with a glass top -- hopefully it was the right decision! :)
Meijhenmeijhen on July 5th, 2008 08:55 pm (UTC)
They are a lot easier to clean if you clean on a regular basis, don't leave spills to sit, etc
But once something gets burned on, I've found it's darn near impossible to get it off. Even if you get the actual burnt stuff off, it leaves a residue or stain (not sure which) that I haven't been able to get off no matter what I use.

It's really easy to wipe up spills, though, that's for sure!
shiny_jen on July 6th, 2008 03:27 am (UTC)
even a magic eraser?
(no subject) - alice_bunnie on July 6th, 2008 01:37 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - dolmena on July 9th, 2008 09:24 pm (UTC) (Expand)
a tempest in a teapot.wearycommunist on July 5th, 2008 08:59 pm (UTC)
my mother has a smooth top and i HATE HATE HATE it. it does not heat evenly at all, takes forever to warm up, etc. it is relatively easy to clean, though. also, she discovered that the top will crack if, say, you happen to try to kill a cockroach scampering across the top of it with a broom. (oh, the joys of living in alabama) my first pick is always a gas range, but sounds like maybe you don't have a gas hookup?
fotogrrl777fotogrrl777 on July 5th, 2008 09:05 pm (UTC)
Nope, gas isn't an option. :(
(no subject) - sabyne on July 5th, 2008 09:12 pm (UTC) (Expand)
just meleatherfemme on July 5th, 2008 09:08 pm (UTC)
If you have the resources for it, look into induction.

Other than that, the only thing a glass top gives you is an easy to clean surface.
aeryn on July 5th, 2008 09:12 pm (UTC)
The one time I used a flat-top (I guess it was glass?) , I used the wrong type of cooking pan or something, because flames shot out from it. Never again!!!

I have used electric coil-top, which is what I grew up with. Now I use gas stove, and holy heck, I love it so much. I hate having to wait for the coils to heat up. But looks like gas isn't an option for you... :(
Heatherheathrow on July 5th, 2008 09:17 pm (UTC)
I like my smooth cook top. Clean as you go, and it cleans easily. If stuff gets burned on (and you get lazy), use the bottle of stuff that you get with your stove (mine's called "Cook Top Cleaning Creme for Smooth Top Ranges" - catchy, huh?). That plus a sponge and elbow grease will get it back to brand new status in a few minutes.

I use every type of pan on mine - dutch oven, cast iron, etc. - love it.
fotogrrl777fotogrrl777 on July 5th, 2008 09:20 pm (UTC)
Do you find it heats as evenly as traditional coils? What about taking a long time to heat up or cool down?
(no subject) - heathrow on July 5th, 2008 09:24 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - fotogrrl777 on July 5th, 2008 09:31 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - dolmena on July 9th, 2008 09:25 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Sarcasticia Nitpickersontisiphone on July 5th, 2008 09:18 pm (UTC)
I really love my glass top stove - spending two minutes cleaning it instead of 20 is a definite bonus, and it cooks evenly and much faster. Only two minor nits - I can't can on it and pans tend to slide. I've learned to deal with the slidey problem and bought a hotplate for canning, and all is well. I'd highly recommend it.
fotogrrl777fotogrrl777 on July 5th, 2008 09:24 pm (UTC)
Mind if I ask what brand/model you have? Uneven cooking seems to be another complaint, but I'm assuming it varies between manufacturers...

(no subject) - tisiphone on July 5th, 2008 09:26 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - fotogrrl777 on July 5th, 2008 09:27 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - geminigirl on July 6th, 2008 12:15 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - mestreen on July 5th, 2008 10:26 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - tisiphone on July 5th, 2008 10:30 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - mestreen on July 5th, 2008 10:54 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - piperki on July 6th, 2008 03:48 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - tisiphone on July 6th, 2008 11:19 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - tisiphone on July 6th, 2008 11:26 am (UTC) (Expand)
The Last Unicornlindsalicious on July 5th, 2008 09:36 pm (UTC)
I'd been using coil tops for years before I got my glass top and I much prefer the glass top. There isn't a noticable difference as far as the time it takes to heat up, I spend the same amount or less time cleaning it, and I think the look is more sleek and updated looking. (I'm one of those annoying people who always has the potential for resale in the back of my mind.) It does take longer for the burners to cool, but I don't have little kids running around or anything so that wasn't a huge issue for me.

Oh, and I caught a commercial a few weeks ago for some Scotch Brite glass top cleaning sponge or something that looked promising as far as the burned on residue thing people were mentioning.
Jennifer St.Clairjenstclair on July 5th, 2008 09:58 pm (UTC)
I would be afraid that some of the antique cast iron skillets I regularly use would end up too warped to use on a glass-top smooth surface. Even a little bit of warping would make them unusable, I'd think.

I've never used one, but I also never considered buying one. My gas stove is a 1949 Tappan Deluxe stove and I wouldn't trade it for anything. I am hoping it lasts for many, many years to come. :)
Sarcasticia Nitpickersontisiphone on July 5th, 2008 10:30 pm (UTC)
FWIW, I use my gran's cast iron skillets on mine all the time and have never had a problem :)
i'm not really meladyartemisa on July 5th, 2008 10:40 pm (UTC)
we just bought a smooth top, we had a coil one.
i am in love... we have had it for 4 months or so and it is easy peasy to clean.
i clean things up immediately and dont let things just sit there.. so that might be why. if you have a history of not doing this, then you might have issues.
it heats better than our coil one ever did too, but we got a pretty pricey one so i dont know if the lower end ones are like this.
we use mostly cast iron. no issues.
Kristina with a Ktanwen on July 5th, 2008 10:55 pm (UTC)
Smooth top stoves
The 2 I've used were all right to clean as long as you didn't let something boil over or burn onto the top. Then it was damn near impossible.
I also hated the length of time they took to heat up & they stayed HOT for quite some time after they were turned off. So much so that the manufacturer installed a light that would stay on as long as the surface was hot. You really had to be careful with it.

Edited at 2008-07-05 10:56 pm (UTC)
(Deleted comment)
Marcieeal on July 6th, 2008 01:43 am (UTC)
My parents switched to a glass top when they remodeled the kitchen and from the perspective of the person who cleans up after Christmas eve dinner, it is a god send (home cooked Chinese food, it used to take hours to get their old range clean).

When we bought our house, it also had glass top and I do really like it. It cleans up easily, but it does take longer to cool. We do have a toddler, but it hasn't proven to be a problem. We have a Frigidare -- don't remember what the folks have.
Komodo Dragon Expertcalieber on July 6th, 2008 01:53 am (UTC)
The current issue of Consumer Reports reviews ranges.

I'd have to say that if I had an electric stovetop, I'd go for glass over coil if only for aesthetic reasons.
mubmubeimmik on July 6th, 2008 08:35 am (UTC)
My main beef with mine is it's black and shiny, so if anything gets on it ever my stove looks really smudgy and dirty. That said, if you've got a nice sharp razorblade (they even make special ones specifically for it that have a slightly safer to hold handle) and the correct stove cleaner they're not bad to keep clean.