We had a lovely couple visit our showroom on Saturday. Discussing their new hob, they stated categorically that it must be gas.
“Not a problem”, said Graham, “But have you ever seen an induction hob at work?”.
Once Graham had showed them a demonstration and explained how these clever hobs work, the couple immediately changed their mind. They are now certain that they must have an induction hob in their new kitchen.
We all know how gas and electric ones work, but induction hobs sound complicated – and this is why they are not as often chosen as the ‘safe’ options that we all understand. In reality, however, there are huge advantages of induction hobs, if only people could understand how simple they really are.
“An induction hob works like an electrical transformer it transfers electrical energy into the pan, using a time-varying magnetic field. A coil of wire is mounted underneath the cooking surface of the induction hob, and a large alternating current is made to flow through that wire. This current creates a changing magnetic field. When an electrically conductive pan is brought close to the induction hob cooking surface, this magnetic field induces an electrical current in the pan.
The metal pan is not a perfect conductor, and as a result the eddy currents created in the pan by the induction hob encounter some electrical resistance. This resistance converts the current into heat. The result is that the metal pan, and only the metal pan, heats up. Heat is transferred from the pan to the food inside the pan by conduction. The cooking surface of the induction hob is designed to be a good thermal insulator, so that a minimum of heat is transferred from the pan to the cooking surface of the induction hob (and thus wasted). In normal operation, the induction hob cooking surface stays cool enough to touch without injury.” (www.controlinduction.co.uk)
There are great benefits of induction hobs, particularly the safety aspect. If a saucepan is removed, the hob is instantly safe to touch. In fact, the hob itself stays so cool that even during cooking, it will not burn you if you touch it. See the photo below – the part of the egg in the pan cooks beautifully, but the other half is so cool that it does not cook at all.
Other benefits of these hobs include:
- Very easy to wipe clean as they have a completely flat surface
- Food splashing outside the pan cannot burn on the hob surface because it stays cool.
- Food is heated up extremely quickly
- No heat is wasted
There are two more things to consider when choosing whether or not to buy an induction hob. You will need pans made of a ferrous metal that is magnetic (lots of iron in the composition of the pans). The best test is so try and stick a magnet to the bottom of your pans. If it sticks, your pans will work fine with an induction hob. Another thing to consider is that induction hobs are a little more expensive than a gas hob, however, you can get some money back because of the efficiency of these hobs.
If you have any questions, please do give us a call on 01722 321447 or e-mail: [email protected]