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Cooktop vs. Range: Which Will Benefit Your Kitchen More?

by Ann Ferguson

Upgrading your kitchen design can be exciting — you'll finally get the kitchen you've dreamed of! But deciding which cooking appliance is best can be tricky. You want ones that look great and let you cook to your heart's content. And when it comes to a cooktop vs. a range, the decision gets even trickier!

Both cooking appliances are similar, but they can change your kitchen landscape differently! So, it's important to review the benefits of each before you decide!

Differences Between a Cooktop and a Range

Comparing cooking on an electric range vs electric cooktop

While a cooktop and range are alike and share similar functions, they are separate appliances. A cooktop is a built-in appliance with burners only and no oven — these go into your countertop. With a cooktop, you'll need to buy a wall oven separately.

A range is an all-in-one appliance featuring a cooktop and an oven together. These can be built-in, freestanding, or drop-in, so how a range fits in your kitchen design will depend on the range type.

Cooktop Pros

Dad helping his kid stir the pot on the cooktop

So, if these kitchen appliances serve similar functions, do they have similar benefits? Yes, but they also have unique pros that are effective!

  • Cooktops take up little space in the kitchen (just a cutout from the counter).
  • The cooktop design radiates less heat since there isn't an oven.
  • The overall design is more ergonomic for those with knee or back issues because there's no bending over to grab things from the oven (you can put a wall oven where it suits you best).
  • The controls are out of reach, making it safer for households with children (several cooktops have child lock features!)
  • There are more flexible options for burner style, size, and power.
  • Ideal for multiple cooks in the kitchen (you can separate the cooking and baking stations!).
  • There is more storage space underneath the cooktop for kitchen necessities.

Cooktop Cons

Although cooktops have several pros, they also feature a few cons to consider carefully!

  • Cooktops can end up being a more expensive solution since you'll have to buy the wall oven separately.
  • They take up more counter space, so they're not ideal for kitchens with limited space.
  • They're more challenging to install correctly and require professional installation.

Range Pros

Mom and daughter putting a pie in the oven on the range, with pots on cooktop

Although cooktops are undoubtedly convenient, the benefits of a range can't be overlooked, either!

  • The all-in-one appliance is ideal for smaller homes — no need to find room for a separate oven!
  • The design is easier to install, especially for freestanding ranges.
  • They have a diverse selection of styles and finishes.
  • They create a strong focal point in your kitchen.
  • You can cook more food all at once and cook and bake the main and side dishes at once!
  • Most ranges feature large capacities.
  • Some ranges feature drawers or compartments to store pots, pans, and griddles!
  • They last decades!

Range Cons

Of course, with any appliance, there are also downsides to a range. For instance:

  • The range design requires bending over to use the oven (not suitable for those suffering from back or knee problems).
  • They take up so much focus, it can detract from the rest of your kitchen design.
  • It's more difficult for more than one cook to be in the kitchen.
  • Some ranges require a backsplash for sanitary or aesthetic purposes.

How to Choose

Collage of different kitchen layouts feature range vs cooktop and wall ovens

So, with all these benefits, how can you choose between a cooktop and a range? There are several factors to consider, including size, desired cooking space, oven space, and the number of cooks!

Size

How large is your kitchen? If you have limited counter space, a range is best. But a tasteful cooktop and separate wall oven will look nice for larger kitchen layouts and provide better kitchen flow. And don't forget to think about space for your prep area!

Cooking Space

How much cooking space do you need? Do you cook more with the burners or in the oven? How often do you use the oven? If you rarely use the oven and have a microwave, you can get away with a simple cooktop setup. But if you love elaborate meals, then a range might be better.

Oven Space

Say you use the oven often; how much oven space are you using? Do you find yourself wishing you had more ovens, period? Several ranges feature double ovens with decent capacity sizes to handle various dishes simultaneously. But having a double wall oven will give you more baking space and easier kitchen flow (when combined with a cooktop).

How Many Cooks

If you're the only one cooking in the kitchen, then a range makes more sense — you can get everything done at once! But if your meals are more involved or you like cooking and baking as a family, a cooktop paired with a wall oven or two provides better kitchen flow!

What's Cooking?

Now that you know more about the benefits of a cooktop vs. a range, it's time to make your choice! Once you do, then you can start shopping at Reece's Maytag Home Appliance Center! We have various name-brand cooktops and ranges to make every meal an adventure!

But if you still have any questions, don't hesitate to call or stop by!