Review of K+BB Criteria for Choosing a Cooktop

Kitchen and Bath Business Drops the Ball

Advice for choosing a cooktop according to the “experts”.

I regularly read the articles in Kitchen and Bath Business (K+BB) for the latest news in appliances. It’s generally quite informative. Sometimes articles appear to be written by folks who are writers, but not necessarily SMEs (Subject Matter Experts). While there is nothing wrong with this, when they don’t conduct thorough research and fact-check their information, the advice they give can be misleading. Consider the recent article:

Bertazzoni-Cooktop

Five Criteria to choosing the right cooktop

Here are my comments on the above article’s content.

1. Size considerations.

The author proclaims that if you need extra counter space, you should consider an electric smoothtop or induction top because you can use it as counter-space. Think about this. Your cooktop is a big investment. It’s obviously heat resistant and durable, but it is not a cutting board, nor is it a work surface. Yes, you might put down a bag of groceries on it now and then (carefully), but really it’s not a food prep station or general use countertop. If you drop something on it, your cooktop can break, costing you hundreds of dollars.

2. Cooking habits.

Again, the author’s advice is generally OK, but could be more useful – until she trips up with this doozy.

“..please note, though, that induction cooktops only work with cast iron, enamel cast iron or stainless steel cookware.”

Just about everyone in the industry knows that there are many stainless steel pots and pans that will not work on induction cooktops. The test is to place a magnet on the bottom of the pan. If the magnet sticks you’re OK, if not, the cookware is not usable on induction.

3. Energy usage.

It’s a big mistake to make energy usage a deciding factor in purchasing a cooktop, but the KB+B author jumps right in with her recommendations. Though I’m a big fan of saving energy, it’s unwise to decide among a gas vs. electric vs. induction cooktop based on energy usage. The total difference in energy cost among the various cooktops will not amount to much at all. Worry instead about the energy usage of an air conditioner or water heater – even washer, dryer, and refrigerator. The difference in energy costs on cooktop types is just not significant.

4. Safety considerations.

Here the author begins by stating that if safety is your concern then you should only choose electric or induction. WOW! Millions of us cook with gas. Are we disregarding the safety and well-being of our families? Seriously?

5. Maintenance and Care.

There’s an opportunity here for lots of good advice on cooktop maintenance and care, but alas the author just can’t seem to provide informed content even here.

Here’s my advice to K+BB: You have a stable full of great designers who write articles for you, and there are also many specialists available to you who are expert on appliances, cabinets, countertops, and other topics. There’s nothing wrong with using a writer (in this case a PR person) to produce your content, but at least have a subject matter expert review his or her content before publishing.


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