It's all very well being a culinary expert, but in order to cook yourself a gourmet delight, you first need to have the right equipment. This guide explains what to look for when buying a cooker, and includes some essential information regarding installation.
Gas or electric
The first thing to consider is whether to buy a gas or electric cooker. Both have their own advantages, but a different cooker may suit a different cook.
Gas: Gas has the advantage of creating a damp heat which can keep food moist whilst it's cooking. Although the heat distribution can become uneven by rising to the top, it does allow food to be cooked simultaneously at different temperatures.
Electric: In conventional electric ovens, temperatures can be uneven with the hottest area being at the centre of the oven. This also offers flexibility as food can be cooked simultaneously at different temperatures. Fan ovens heat up more quickly, and hot air is circulated producing a consistent temperature throughout. Multifunction ovens offer versatility with a conventional or fan option, ideal for any recipe.
Double Oven usually comprise a standard sized fan or multifunction and a smaller conventional oven. This makes them ideal for cooking and grilling simultaneously.
Cookers are rated on a scale of A to G according to their energy efficiency. A -rated appliances are most efficient and therefore cheaper to run, while G-rated appliances are least efficient. The best appliances achieve a first class 'A' rating for cooking performance, in addition to an 'A' energy rating for the least amount of electricity; which is also better for the environment.
Flame Supervision Device
From 1st January 2008 all gas cooking appliances for use in flats and other multi-dwelling buildings cannot be installed unless they contain Flame Supervision Device. A flame supervision device is part of the gas burner system and detects if the flame is extinguished and cuts off the gas supply. Our installation team will be unable to fit any cooking appliance into a flat or multi dwelling building if it is not fitted with this device. Look under product features to check if it meets this new regulation.
It's possible to buy a cooker and hob together. However, you may wish to buy a hob separately. There are several different types to choose from:
Gas hobs: these have the advantage that the heat source (namely the flame) is highly visible when lit, reducing the risk of accidents. The pan supports are usually made from enamel or cast iron - enamel supports can be cleaned in a dishwasher, but become brittle over time. Iron supports are far more durable, but can't be put in a dishwasher due to the risk of rusting.
Solid plate hobs: these are the electric equivalent to a gas hob. The elements are sealed under the pan support, so you don't need to clean them, however the supports are raised from the hob surface which makes cleaning a little fiddly.
Ceramic hobs: ceramic hobs have a single surface, making them extremely easy to clean. The heating elements are hidden under the surface, meaning you never need to clean around them as you would with a gas hob.
Tesco can install your gas or electric cooker for you, if you include installation as part of your order. We can even disconnect your old cooker and replace with the new one, though this will cost you more. Please note that gas cookers being installed in flats must incorporate a Flame Supervision device (see above). Please see our installation policy for more details, including prices.
Take home today
If you need your new cooking appliance quicker than our standard delivery times, look out for selected items with the “Take home today” logo. These items are available in selected stores for same day collection. Simply contact the store to check that the item is in-stock and then collect.