Over the past few years the System Six Designers have noticed an upturn in the number of induction hobs being sold in comparison to the number of gas hobs being sold. With the price of gas bills rising we expect that this trend will continue. Time and Time we are asked the same questions regarding Induction hobs versus gas hobs, so we thought that we should address these frequently asked questions by writing this System Six Explains article.
The first domestic Induction Hob. The "Cool Top 2" 1973.
The History of the Induction Hob
Many of our customers think that the Induction technology is new; this simply is not the case. The modern induction hob was first developed in the 1970’s, although the earliest induction patents date back to the 1900s. The first Domestic Induction Hob was released by the American company, Westinghouse in 1973. The hob was called the Cool Top 2 (CT2), the price for the hob started at $1500 and included a set of Pans. The CT2 had four burners of 1600 watts each. The CT2 consisted of ceramic sheet surrounded by a Stainless steel bezel, each burners temperature was controlled by a magnetic slider. The hob was ahead of its time, it offered the user functions such as protection against boiling over sensors, boiling dry sensors and electrical overloads. They were also able to offer Magnetic Pan Detection.
Inside an Induction Hob
How the Induction hob Technology works
An Induction Hob works on the use of electromagnets. Inside each cooking area of an Induction hob is a coil of copper wire, which has an alternating electric current passed through it. When a saucepan is placed on the hob it creates an oscillating magnetic field. The fluctuating magnetic field created inside the saucepan by the alternating electric current under it will in turn create heat inside the pan thus heating directly the contents. Because of the electromagnetic field created it is not recommended with anyone who has a pacemaker or similar technology.
Induction versus Gas
In recent years the prices of Induction hobs have reduced to a more attainable cost. We are now finding that depending on the specifications of the hobs that you require that the initial outlay for an induction hob can be as little as £100 more expensive than a Gas Hob. In the past year we have seen that the purchase of Induction hobs has increased by 7% whilst the purchase of Gas Hobs has dropped by approximately 6.5% (these figures were provided by BSHG based upon the regional sales of 2014/15). With the prices of our utility bills soaring, it is important to consider the long term cost of the hob and how efficient your Hob of choice is. When looking at the efficiency of the types of hobs, 55% of the energy from a gas hob is used to cook the foods whilst the other 45% of the energy is used to heat the pan or lost. Comparing this to the Induction hob we find that because of the way an induction hob works 90% of its energy goes directly into the cooking process whilst only 10% is lost. In turn this use of energy makes the cooking times on an induction hob is on average 3 times faster than Gas. At System Six many of our staff have become “Induction Converts”, switching from Gas Hobs in their households to Induction Hobs. Some of the feedback from our “Induction Converts” includes induction hobs are easier to clean as spills do not get cooked onto the surface hob, and you’re less likely to be burnt from an induction hob as the surface of an induction hob is cooler. The future sales of induction hobs do not look like to be slowing up. As the Technology is developed to create induction Wok burners, grills and griddles the future of induction is bright. If you would like to discuss the best hob option for your dream kitchen please follow the link below to arrange a meeting with one of our System Six Designers.