For many homeowners, a cooktop appliance is an attractive alternative to the traditional all-in-one range. Since these units sit higher on the wall, it frees up valuable counter space in the kitchen. The location of the cooktop appliance also makes it easier to use since no bending and stooping is required. As with most things, added convenience means added cost.
Before purchasing a cooktop appliance, homeowners should consider the following:
• Burner Quality: The more powerful the burners, the higher the price tag. Adding a fifth burner or a bridge burner that sits between others also increases both convenience and cost.
• Burner Styles: Electric coil or basic gas burners are the least expensive and come with four burners except for ultra-slim models that have only two. By spending an extra $100 to $600, buyers can add sealed burner gas, glass top electric, seamless grates, and several other options.
• Controls: The least expensive units have manual knobs while more high-end models come equipped with digital control capabilities. Many digital cooktop appliances come with one-touch capability as well.
• Cost: Prices vary considerably depending on whether the buyer chooses a standard four-burner gas cooktop or something that is larger and has more features. Homeowners should expect to pay $300 on the low end all the way up to $2,500 for the ultimate in convenience.
• Electric or Gas Options: Those who already have a gas line hookup usually choose that option while homeowners without it are not often willing to pay extra to upgrade.
• Size: Most cooktop units range from 30 to 36 inches although that can vary. Homeowners must ensure that they take careful measurements to avoid buying something that won’t fit into their kitchen.
• Ventilation: Those who don’t have an overhead exhaust already installed may need to spend up to $1,500 extra to install a downdraft system with their new appliance.Taking the time to evaluate these factors carefully is the best way not to experience buyer’s remorse that is hard to undo later. .