In modern kitchens, the sight of a gas installation is rare. Currently, functional hobs powered by electricity are much more popular. And although induction and ceramic cooktops look very similar, there are a few important differences
At first glance, cooktops do not look much different from each other. Both are characterized by a smooth, elegant surface and designated fields. What separates them, however, are discrepancies in construction and system of operation.
In the case of induction cooktops it is worth knowing that under the surface there are coils that generate a rapidly changing magnetic field. The resulting eddy currents are responsible for the conversion of electrical energy into heat, thanks to which the vessel – in the selected field – heats up very quickly. The presence of eddy currents, however, requires special pots and pans made of suitable materials
As for the ceramic hob, the most important role is played by the spiral heaters. These are the ones that transfer energy to the cookware by heating the entire surface of the plate. Compared to the induction cooktop the equipment does not require ferromagnetic accessories, however, the time of meal preparation is longer
The most important difference in the use of the equipment is the way it heats up. Since in the case of induction cooktops only a single pot is heated on a selected field, cooking does not take much time. The convenience is also increased due to the ease of cleaning – any dirt can be removed right after finishing cooking, without having to wait for the surface to cool down.
Cooking on a ceramic hotplate takes longer – heating the whole surface of the hotplate may take even several minutes. It also takes a long time for the hob to cool down completely – from 30 to 60 minutes – which unfortunately creates a risk of burns, especially in the case of small, curious and inattentive household members
If you decide to buy home appliances, one of the most important determinants is undoubtedly the price. As a rule, induction cooktops tend to be more expensive than ceramic ones, although individual models can of course be found at similar prices. At this point, however, it will be advisable to pay attention to the performance of both solutions. Induction cooktops do not emit heat into the environment, and using them in the long run is much more profitable for the wallet.
In the case of an induction cooktop, the need for special accessories may also seem to be an apparent problem. However, due to the widespread use of this type of cooktop, most cookware nowadays is designed for this purpose. A simple way to test one’s own pots is to place a magnet on the bottom of the pot – the attraction will confirm the inductive use of the pots. It should also be noted that ferromagnetic cookware is distinguished by its durability and solidity, making it a purchase for many years.
You will easily notice that despite the visual similarity, each cooktop has its own specifics. The main advantages of an induction cooktop include its high energy efficiency and convenience, both in use and cleaning. For effective cleaning, all you need is a cloth and a mild detergent. Another important and noteworthy factor is safety – the hob can be used also by younger people, without fear of painful burns.
A ceramic plate may tempt you with its low price. It will be especially useful for people living alone, where the longer cooling time will not be a problem for your roommates. Traditional cookware can also be cheaper than ferromagnetic ones. In the long run, however, using an induction hob is more economical.