Shopping new electric range-glass, induction, convection options?

Barb Alli
October 27, 2019

This is long; I apologize in advance.

I cooked on coil-top electric ranges for years, and along with the ovens, was darn happy.

Older GE range blew oven element a year ago, no replacement, so bought top-of-the-line GE coil.

Bleah. Not only does oven bake (my artisan & loaf breads) very unevenly, even when I use my baking tile & rotate, but the coils with the new safety button make it impossible to use my real wok w/ring and the button sucks heat from the center of frying pans. Plus the coils run too hot to do low simmering for things like heavy red sauce.

I'm not obsessed with keeping my kitchen clean . . . things definitely can linger overnight to be cleaned in the morning, which is why I have been skittish about glass-tops. BUT . . . I don't know that the kind of cooking I do make induction a practical alternative. (Simple food, well prepared, with some flourishes--I mean I LIKE to cook, A Lot, but it's not the reason I exist.)

Dear Husband is looking to spoil me and get a new range. Not plumbed for gas stove. We looked at induction during last shopping round, and I don't know that I can justify the cost for the kind of cooking I do. Convection or true convection is getting some play in our headspace.

I'd like some hands-on advice. The reviews of glass-top cleaning give me pause, though I CAN change to being more observant about cleaning the top. No matter what I get I know I'll need to do some experimenting and I'm open to some of that, but I don't want my life to revolve around it--that is, I don't want a lot of catastrophes in the learning process.

Not only does the induction price give me pause, but so does replacing my much-loved cookware, and I don't think I could my wok on it, either. Can I with a glass-top?

And true convection vs. convection . . . I understand the mechanical difference, but what do you bakers out there think about the actual performance in your kitchen? Particularly interested in artisan long-fermented breads done at high temps (450-500) and pizza.

So far the leading contender for purchase is GE Model JB750DJWW

Comments (43)

  • kevinande

    If you do a search for induction you will find a wealth of information. I will try to address a few of your questions in condensed form. I don't think you will find woking very fulfilling on induction. It can be done however if you don't have a radiant heat source it's not very effective. The surface of any smooth top range is pretty tough, but they can be broken or damaged through abuse or misuse. The biggest thing with induction is to not drag pans over minerals such as salt and sugar. This can/will damage the cooking surface. As far as cleaning the surface does not get hot enough to bake foods on, so generally speaking of you wipe up messes immediately cleaning is relatively easy. For the harder messes a flat razor Ceramabrite and elbow grease is your friend. leaving a mess over night will not be an issue. Just a bit harder to clean. Replacing your pans unfortunately is a pre-requisite for induction. You could purchase a few induction discs so you can use your non ferrous cookware, however you lose the precision control and all the benefits of induction going this route. If you are going to do that you may as well just stick to a radiant cooking surface.

    I don't bake things that require a lot pf precision so I am not going to be much help to you in that regard. I know having the fan in there helps spread the heat evenly, beyond that I am not very knowledgeable.

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  • wekick

    Ovens have become puzzle boxes because a feature like convection or “true”or “Euro” convection may mean different things in the way they are utilized in different brands. Every oven has natural convection as the air heats, it rises and as it cools, it falls. Many ovens have fan assisted convection. They might use a slower fan with more heat from the bottom for baking or more heat from the top and a faster fan for roasting. GE now has “direct air” that can bring heat from the top. The Euro or true convection has a third and sometimes a fourth element in close proximity to the fan(s). These features are often marketed as bringing evenness in heat to your oven, but so many recipes were developed with heat coming from the bottom. Heat coming from more directions can change the way things bake. The fan itself creates air flow that increases the rate of heat transfer. It may cause things to cook a little faster. It causes superficial drying, which leads to increased browning. The airflow from the fan may hit one side of what is baking causing it to cook/brown more quickly on that side. If you have added heat immediately by the fan like the true/Euro convection, it can make this worse. Some manufacturers try to mitigate this by creating more turbulence by using baffles, double fans or by the fans periodically reversing airflow. Some ovens have multiple fan speeds which can also help but almost never refer to it in their literature or manuals. The true/Euro convection is used in different ways. I have one oven that it comes on briefly in rotation with the top and bottom elements. Some have dedicated “all convection” modes that use just the back element. Just the way the elements and fans work together is often proprietary which is another thing that makes it hard to figure out what you are buying.

    Another feature in new ovens that changes the way things bake is the hidden bake element on the bottom. Less radiant heat for things that need to cook from the bottom. I have and upside down apple pie recipe that won’t work in these ovens at all.

    This all means that it is a big learning curve when you buy an oven and some never work well. I do like convection but in many ovens, it can create more hot spots than it fixes.

    I would look at Bosch ranges, a slide in if you can.

    This is a review of the range you are considering. I had a range that had this issue/design flaw and luckily the company eventually bought it back. It was horrid. If you go online, people give the range you are considering high ratings which was the case with my oven too. Yet there were a few that recognized the problem. This why I read the low reviews first. This is from GE Appliances website.


    5 months ago

    If only

    the oven was as great as the cook top! I ordered this range with the steam clean feature in the oven but was never told during my decision making process that covering the bottom baking element to allow for steam cleaning affects the temperature readings so that the pre-heat takes 40 minutes, the reading on the instrument panel is pretty much useless for anything over 325 degrees, and the temp never comes back up to the correct setting if you open the door to insert food. I have had to use a store-bought oven thermometer in the oven and still cannot rely on temps. The thermometer is only good to identify when the oven is at the temperature required by the recipe and to confirm that once the door is opened even for a nano second, the temp has dropped and does not recover unless you are in convection mode. I have had two service calls: first, said range is working fine and what I am experiencing is "by design" and is a concession in order to have the steam clean feature; second, found the range needed to be re-calibrated by 35 degree increase, which has helped, but not eliminated the problem. Bottom line, I am told this is a great stove and I just need to understand how it works. I think I get that. I am also told the temp indicated on the instrument panel assures that it is adequate to start cooking food. But if that is the case, I still need to understand why an $1,100 range needs a $10 manual thermometer to confirm the actual temp in the oven cavity and why I have had to throw out undercooked meat. I've been cooking over 50 years and have had a lot of stoves, so even though the cook top is a 10+, I have to rate this range a '2' because the oven literally does not reliably perform basic requirements. We love pasta, but we miss our pizza!!!”

  • Jen dW

    Which brand oven are you writing about? I, too, care a great deal about how well the oven bakes in addition to caring about getting a good induction stove top. I am so confused!! I am replacing an old coil freestanding range. I am willing to spend up to $3500, though I'd prefer to spend far less. Any thoughts on LG, Frigidaire, KitchenAid, GE Cafe?

  • M

    If you want to cook with a wok, then nothing beats the built-in wok ring of a Bluestar gas range. But if you don't have access to gas in your kitchen, then that's not an option.

    Induction is awesome otherwise. In many ways it behaves like gas. In some, it's even better, in others it's a little worse. But generally, most people are overall very happy with their induction stoves. Tell us a little more, and maybe we can make a good recommendation for brands. Many good ones out there. But there are a few lemons. So, read reviews.

    Most people who wok cook on induction use flat bottom woks. It's not quite the same. But it's the best you can do, unless you plan on installing a dedicated wok ring in a separate appliance

  • momlongerwalk dayton

    This is Barb Alli, OP. I'm big on reliability. I don't need pro quality. I don't want to buy more than i need. I'm okay with cranking my basic oven up to 500 to bake bread. I'm stuck with electric 30" slide in. What else will help not in my OP? I'm not after a $3000 stove. Maybe up to $1500?

  • salonva

    following because I need to replace electric range as well, and my price point is lower is better. Not a pro, not a cooking lover. I love reliability and ease of use. Old dogs like me don't learn new tricks too easily.

  • Jerry Jorgenson

    We put in a Bluestar electric wall oven and a Wolf induction range in our remodel in 2017 (Bluestar induction wasn't available then). This has been a great combination and has made cooking fun again. Not having a range is great. My opinion is that a range is a compromise with either the oven or the cooktop not being the best possible. And the bending over takes the fun out of using the oven.

    Fresh milled whole wheat bread

    Pear, eggplant, and goat cheese pizza (built in baking stone)

    Full size baking sheets

  • Jen dW

    That sounds lovely. But some of us don't have enough kitchen space or money for a cooktop and a wall oven. I only have space to replace an old 30" range. I'm trying to compare features and reliability of the options available at the standard stores (Costco, Best Buy, Home Depot...).

  • Sue Mcgrath

    If $3500 is your budget, take a look at the Samsung chef collection induction slide in range. I got it in my remodel and really love it. It is fairly maintenance free and I have had great results with stovetop and oven. The bosch in the sane price range is also supposed to be good. Also, I don’t know what type of pans you have, but you may find that you can use some of them.

  • Jen dW

    I've checked my pans. Most of them will be donated to my daughter. Yesterday I scooped up the induction ready Circulon collection at Costco (usually $179) for $129, since they were on clearance. I'm ready with the pans, I just need to find the right range. I'm also getting an electrician to give me an estimate on upgrading the ancient wiring in my house.

  • wdccruise

    Frigidaire has recently introduced the FGIH3047VF Gallery Series 30 Inch Stainless Steel Induction Electric Convection Range for about $1700. Owners seem to like it and it's a relative bargain for a slide-in induction range.

  • Jen dW

    I've been reading about those. I have some concerns about Frigidaire quality. I would also prefer to get a range with knobs instead of digital stovetop controls. I wish the manufacturers wouldn't inflate the prices of induction ranges so much. I can't believe that they are all worth thousands more than the regular electric ranges.

  • Jen dW

    One of the problems with shopping for an induction range is that none of the stores in my area have them in stock, so I can't see them. Also, no one knows anything about them (except one person at Best Buy). For example, I went into one store and an employee offered to assist me. I told her I was interested in induction ranges and she asked me exactly what I meant by induction. In a different store when I asked about induction ranges, the employee asked me if I wanted a gas or electric induction range. That's why I have to do all research online.

  • Jerry Jorgenson

    Jen dW -- That's typical for almost every product you might purchase. Store personnel seldom know much about the products they sell, and if you have done even ten minutes worth of research, you'll likely know more. Even specialty stores with only a limited product range are that way. Once in a while, you find a small shop where the owner lives and breaths the product, but those are very rare.

  • Jerry Jorgenson

    Jen dW - I was just trying to give you some food for thought and some reasons why we did it that way.

  • Jen dW

    Thank you. Your kitchen looks perfect for me...just beautiful. I'm always struggling for space in my kitchen.

  • Jerry Jorgenson

    We were struggling with space too. That's why there's a mobile baking table rather than an island. With a fixed island, there wouldn't have been any room to move around at all.

  • Barb Alli

    Can the OP chime in here? I'd be on induction in a flash if I KNEW I'd love it, but the cost! Can someone who uses their glass top kind of like I might give some insight? And bread bakers about convection or true convection.

  • Jerry Jorgenson

    Barb Alli - As a frequent bread baker, I've never compared true-convection (like my Bluestar has) with convection (not nearly enough money to purchase various ovens just to try them out :-) so I don't have any first-hand experience between the two. I do always bake with convection (unless I'm using the built in stone as it's not necessary then. I typically bake a dozen loaves at a time (The oven will hold 18, but the mixer maxes out at 12 per batch). Loaves come out even, Pizza crisp (or at least is when I don't load it up with too many toppings). Cookies are popular.

    For induction, as far as I know all are glass top. The things I like about it are the cool kitchen and no gas fumes, the ease of cleaning, the controllability and responsiveness of the heat, and the repeatability. (e.g. setting 6 is always the same heat between cooking sessions).

  • Barb Alli

    Thanks. Good info. Edited to add: I can't even think about a Bluestar-the price. Regrettably.

  • Barb Alli

    Being delivered today. I will check back with a review after using it for awhile. Selling points: Bakers seem to appreciate the even baking (a major point for me), and while it's true I'll have to learn to do a better job of anticipating temperatures and cleaning the stovetop, that's something I can learn. My cooking technique is not really dependent on crucial temperatures such as for tricky sauces.


  • Jen dW

    I actually ordered the LG Induction range LSE4617ST from Costco (currently offering a $1000 discount). It's been shipped, so I'm waiting now. I'll also share results after using it for a while.

  • Britt


  • kevinande

    Thanks for following up. I wish everyone did that.

  • Barb Alli

    Opted for a GE smooth-top with true convection. JB750DJWW Installed yesterday.

    way I could justify the price of induction with my style of cooking,
    though Dear Husband & I talked that over a lot. (He was helpful,
    very. He likes my cooking.)

    Ran a couple of well-fermented
    sandwich loaves through with the regular convection setting (not the
    "roast" setting), and it couldn't have been easier. Nicely browned
    compared to previous oven, proper spring, good crumb. Since I didn't use
    the timer right, I had to wing the last while of baking, but I'd say it
    was no longer than before, which for bread is okay. Oven automatically
    reduces the temperature for convection cooking.

    Also reheated some
    leftovers on the stovetop; temperature was definitely lower for better
    heating. Also am using the "keep warm" element to help me melt an 8# jar
    of honey that had fully crystallized, and that's going well. I brought
    the pot of water to boil first on one of the super-duper burners and
    that was definitely speedy.

    So, first impressions are positive.

    there are some changes to be made; can't just dump my sharp-cornered
    loaf pans onto the glass surface, and I expect I'll have to be cautious
    about laying my pizza peel right on top, all to avoid scratching. That
    might be too careful and we'll see.

  • celia_irvine

    I’d love to hear more about how it’s going because I’m in a similar boat. I actually have 2 days to decide which electric range to buy in order to get the Black Friday discount. So many reviews complain about the ceramic glass tops scratching and being hard to clean. I’ve been using one for seven years and it’s really fine so I don’t know if these people have never had one and can’t get used to it or if they’ve changed over the years. I have never had any problem whatsoever with the top! We even use it to slice pizza on and I hope we’ll still be able to! How’s that working out for you??? I’m enamored with the idea of convection, but is it really necessary? I won’t do induction because I love my old cookware too much. I can’t believe how complicated it is and how much research you have to do to pick a stupid electric range!! Also, none of the reviews talk about being able to adjust the temps on the stovetop down. That’s the main reason I want a new one - this old thing runs hot and trying to turn a boil down to a simmer is a nightmare. I’m so scared I’m going to buy a new range and regret it. Sorry for the rant!! But, again, would love to hear your feedback.

  • M

    Not being able to easily adjust from a boil to a simmer is a direct result of having radiant coils. And at the end of the day, a smooth-top is just the same as old-school coils. You just put a pretty sheet of ceramic on top. And that actually contributes to the problem by adding even more thermal mass.

    If you want to be able to quickly adjust temperatures and if you want to reliably maintain a low simmer, then you have to go either gas or induction. In fact, induction would probably be a better match.

    If you buy another smooth top, you'll get the same as what you already have.

  • celia_irvine

    Thanks, M. This is what I’ve been suspecting.

  • Jerry Jorgenson

    You won't regret getting induction. Cooler kitchen, no burnt on food, much lower energy usage.

  • Barb Alli

    I have had it since Nov 14, and have baked pizza, artisan bread, roasted a chicken & an 18 lb turkey. I made cranberry sauce and gravy on the range top, plus two gallons of turkey soup/broth and innumerable rounds of warmed-up stuff from my freezer full of homemade food, like red sauce. Plus sauteed veggies. The upshot: I'm much happier with it than I thought I would be. In fact, I'm very pleased overall. It's much easier to clean the stovetop than I expected--and when it's clean, it's like another countertop because it's level! I had to quick wipe up cranberry spatters. Artisan bread & regular bread perfect on the convection bake. Chicken & turkey done on convection roast were done much more quickly than I expected; learning curve! Pizza with stone needs some tinkering; don't know what best setting will be yet. As far as simmering, boiling, etc., I was truly surprised at how responsive the radiant is. Not immediate, but darn quick. I don't make a lot of gotta-be-careful-with-it sauces, but the warming circle is great for holding things like gravy. I can bring things to a simmer, not a boil, though the front burners run just a shade hotter than I'd like, but tolerable. For what I viewed as a decent price (about $1200 including tax & delivery, but not installation or haul away, because we sold that coil to a landlord--perfect use of that machine, I might add), I'm happy. A learning curve in progress, and it's not really that steep. If you can't afford or justify induction, I'd say this is a truly reasonable substitute. YMMV, IMHO, etc.

  • Barb Alli

    As for cleaning, I've just been diligent about wiping with wet dishcloth. Used the special cleaner once, and while it needs some serious elbow grease to go with it, a few drops cleaned off scorched potato water from a slight slosh. It's been much easier to keep clean than I ever imagined. I have the white range with a more 'gray' top and while I'm using all my 30+ year old pans, I'm fine because I'm careful not to slide stuff. I mean not ultra-careful, just reasonably careful. But I didn't before with the coil because that wasn't going to work, either! I'm sure induction is primo--but for the price & new pans and my style of cooking, it's a good match.

  • salonva

    I have been reading some of these posts for a while because the down the road appliance shopping and kitchen reno is getting nearer and nearer. I was so hoping that the price of induction would drop by the time I was ready to consider. Unfortunately, it looks like it's just too high for me to justify. Yes, I know, it's something we will use maybe not daily but close, and it sure would be nice, but at this point, I still cannot reconcile the $$$ for it. I was hoping there was some great model that was a budget pick.

    We still have the option to switch to gas but presently have an old but functioning builder model electric range. This is when I tell myself that generally speaking, anything will be an upgrade? oh well. If someone stumbles on a great moderately priced induction range please do share.

    @Barb Alli your convection looks great and I hope you continue enjoying it.

  • jwvideo

    >>>" was hoping there was some great model that was a budget pick . . . If someone stumbles on a great moderately priced induction range please do share."<<<

    What are your requirements for "great" and what would you consider a "budget pick" or a "moderately priced induction range? "

    If a "moderately priced'" would be what Barb Alli called a "decent price," then you might look at the Frigidaire Gallery FGIF induction models. They seem to priced around $1000.

    OTOH, if "budget pick" means the same price bracket as basic coil and radiant burner ranges --- the ones in the $400 to $600 bracket at Lowes, HD, and such ---- then you're correct that there are no induction models offered in that price bracket. The currently least expensive induction range I know of is the Frigidaire FFIF model which right now seems to be offered at around $900 but which I've seen discounted down in holiday sales. The Frigidaire Gallery FGIF models start about $100 or so higher and have convection.

    There were a couple of passing comments above about these though not from any owners and I do not recall seeing any threads here from actual users, either. I think Reviewed-dot-com and Consumer Reports have tested the Frigidaires. I forget how CR rated them and I no longer subscribe. If you don't have access to CR, maybe wdccruise can help out? IIRC, Reviewed recommended them but the reviews were cursory.

    Adjusting heat down on radiant burners.

    Well, back in the last century, we used to move a pan partially off or fully off an electric burner for minute or even to a different burner when we needed to rapidly decrease the heat. So, there are work-arounds of a sort. Also, as Barb Alli says, some folks are finding that some of the current ranges radiant smoothtop burners seem more responsive than their older models' burners did.

    Trouble is, there is a degree of subjective satisfaction in this which makes it hard to provide a frame of reference for others to match with their own subjective preferences. A demo would be the best way to find out but I have to say that I've never seen any retailers having budget or moderately priced radiant ranges hooked up for demo. Do you know anybody who may have recently purchased a new radiant range? If it is a model they think is better than older ones, maybe you could mooch a little time to test it out?

  • salonva

    Thank you- I will look into the Frigidaire models. At first glance they seem pretty good but not stellar. (just based on reviews/# of stars so to speak). Yes in the neighborhood of $1.000 is fine. Most of the ones I have seen are more like 3K which is not in my plans.

    Thank you again.

  • Jerry Jorgenson

    Because induction uses much less energy it will pay for itself over time. If you live where A/C is a factor, that time won't be too long as less A/C will be needed.

  • kevinande

    Induction uses less energy, however I don't think I would go so far as to say "much less". Remember electricity resistance is 100% efficient. For every watt in you get a watt out. The problem is a transference of heat from element to pan. That process is only approx 70% efficient with resistance cooking. With induction it is anywhere from 80 to 94% efficient depending on who conducted the study, the cook top and pans in question. Basically all that to say if you are buying it believing it will save you money in energy think again. I am not even touching on the heating up the kitchen with waste heat and a multitude of other factors.

    I am a huge induction advocate and would like to see everyone with one. They are easy to cook on and very elegant IMO. Makes an interesting conversation piece when guests notice I am cooking atop SILPAT silicon mats. The clean up was the deal sealer for me 10 years ago when I adopted the technology. Cost is a factor for many people though. $500 range vs $1000 ad up range. They both perform the exact same function, so I get it. Don't buy a $1000 + range in the belief you will recoup that extra cost in energy efficiency though. The good news though is that American consumers are beginning to get educated about induction and more units are being sold each year. As production increases, prices will come down.

    edited for spelling errors

  • firstglance

    Bought my induction cooktop thirteen years ago, when remodeling the kitchen. When I started looking, read and read and read anything I could find, especially here on the GardenWeb site. Choices were fewer. A lot of people then were going for a European model and needed their electric service changed to support it. Wasn't ready to do that. Only moderate priced model was the Kenmore Elite I bought. Read here from a couple who had their Sears induction cooktop over 20 years and loved it. So it has been great and I like to cook all sorts of things. The glass has a few surface scratches, nothing glaring. Need to replace it, not because of the heating elements or surface but the base metal frame it sits on which is rusting away. Not happy with that even though it's 13 years old! I keep it clean but it doesn't get doused in liquid, swipe to the sides when cleaning. Not sure why the front of the base is the area where the finish has cracked off, base metal has rusted through, maybe because air vents are there. So I'm starting the search again to find an induction model that isn't too dear.

  • jwvideo

    Further on energy bill savings not really helping induction pay for itself, my former employer, the US Dept. of Energy, used to say that the beneficial effects were mostly for the utility system (lessening load) rather than saving much money by individual households.

    IIRC, DOE used to say (and maybe still does) that a heavily used electrical stove will comprise about 2.8% of a home's electrical bill. DOE further broke that down as 1.8% for oven usage and 1% for stovetop/cooktop usage.

    So if induction is 10% or 15% more efficient than radiant electric, we're talking a tiny impact on your bill. In the best best case scenario, 15% of 1% equals .15%. That's a .0015 reduction in your electric bill. Fifteen cents a month out of a $100 electrical bill.

    Those heavily using their kitchens while running air conditioning in warmer months might see a bit more savings, but we're still mostly talking pennies per month except for those homes saddled with exhorbitant power rates.

  • Jerry Jorgenson

    Note that induction is about 80% more efficient. Yes, it's not the biggest user of electricity, but it's far from zero.

  • jwvideo

    Do we perhaps have a misunderstanding of the efficiency measurements by DOE and others?

    AFAIK, all of the efficiency figures are relative to a theoretical 100% efficiency, as Kevinande pointed out, and not relative to each other. Its about how much of the fuel source's available energy goes into the pan and food and how much goes elsewhere.

    IOW, It's not that DOE and whoever have said that induction is "80% more efficient" than electric resistance burners and that those are 70% more efficient than gas burners. It is that induction at 80% efficiency is 10% more efficient at using its energy inputs than electric resistance burners which measure out at around 70% efficiency in using their energy inputs.

    Now, if there is some new research saying that induction is 80% more efficient than other burners, I'd sure like to take a look at it if you have a citation or a link

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