Cooking with electricity –
a guide to electric stove tops
Cooking equipment is one of the highest energy users of all common household appliances. Having
an efficient electric stove top can help you reduce energy costs and greenhouse gas emissions.
This guide provides information on the different types of electric stove tops, how they work and
Understanding electric stove tops
Electric stove tops use coils to heat the surface of the stove top to transfer heat directly into the
cookware. Many modern electric appliances have radiant elements installed beneath a smooth
glass surface that has the added benefit of being easy to clean. They heat evenly and quickly
without the use of an open flame, ensuring more heat is used directly in cooking, with much less
risk of burns or fires.
Why switch to electric?
Gas cooking releases carbon emissions into the atmosphere, while the process of mining gas
is also destructive to the environment. The ACT is powered by 100% renewable electricity
and switching your home to electric appliances will help reduce emissions while also reducing
household energy costs.
Modern electric stove tops are just as good or better than gas stove tops. They are cheaper to run
and can provide greater thermal control and efficiency. The open flame of a gas stove top can also
present a potential safety concern for burns, while combusting gas inside your home can also cause
air quality issues indoors if not properly ventilated.
The Sustainable Household Scheme can be used to help you upgrade to an efficient electric stove top
for your home. If your gas stove top is the only remaining gas product in your home, upgrading to an
electric stove top will give you the opportunity to disconnect your gas supply and eliminate the supply
charge – saving you over $350 annually
What types of electric stove top you can install?
Under the Sustainable Household Scheme existing gas stove tops can be upgraded to an efficient
electric ceramic or induction stove top. You can upgrade a combined gas stove top/oven to a
combined electric stove top/oven. Range hoods are not included.
Ceramic stove tops
Ceramic stove tops use coiled metal elements that sit under a smooth top made from tempered
ceramic glass. The coils heat the ceramic glass surface which warms the pan. Features and benefits
of ceramic stove tops include:
> They have a smooth, flat surface that makes them easier to clean.
> Safety features such as pause and lock buttons makes ceramic stove tops much safer,
especially around children.
> Some models will turn the heat off when there is a spill, or an empty pot is sitting on a cook-
ing area to reduce burn risk and increase safety.
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Induction stove tops
Induction stove tops use electromagnetic coils beneath a ceramic glass surface and transfer energy
directly into metal cookware. The cookware itself becomes hot, not the stove top, resulting in
excellent efficiency and safety.
Features and benefits of induction stove tops include:
> Excellent energy efficiency, as over 90% of energy is transferred as heat to the cookware, in
comparison to about 50% for gas.
> Cooking is incredibly fast and will bring a large pot of water to the boil faster than the best gas
stove tops due to their direct method of heating.
> They are very safe. It is impossible to accidentally leave your induction stove top switched on
after you’ve removed the cookware.
> They have a smooth, flat surface that makes them easy to clean.
Induction stove tops do require certain types of cookware to work with the electromagnetic fields.
There is a wide range of induction ready cookware available to purchase, or you can test your
existing cookware with a magnet to see if it will work with induction. If the magnet sticks to the base
of the pan, it should work on an induction stove top.
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