CHOOSING KITCHEN APPLIANCES

There are so many options for style, technology, and quality when it comes to choosing the right appliances for your kitchen remodel. Even if you work with a professional design or building company, choosing the right appliances can be difficult. It is important to create a design plan before shopping for appliances. This will ensure you have a functional, stylish kitchen that suits your lifestyle and budget.

START WITH A PLANNING

You can create an appliance-purchasing strategy by assessing your needs and goals in several key areas.

BUDGET AND LAYOUT

You can choose to remodel your existing kitchen or create your dream kitchen by changing the design. The layout of your kitchen will determine the type of appliances you purchase. Consider how your kitchen is used, the traffic patterns and interactions with adjacent rooms, and any architectural or structural limitations. Common Kitchen Layouts provides tips and insight on space planning. The layout you choose can limit or enhance the number of appliances that can fit. You may need to make compromises.

Your budget will significantly impact the appliances you choose for your kitchen. It should be appropriate for the project’s size and scope. When choosing appliances, make sure that you and your trade professional place function above aesthetics. Commercial-style appliances may look great in your kitchen, but you might need to make structural changes that will limit your budget.

FUNCTION AND LIFE

It would be best to consider your family’s lifestyle when designing your new kitchen. It would be best if you took notes about how you use your kitchen now and how you would like it to be used in the future. Consider adding specialty appliances such as an ice maker, warming drawer, or oven to make entertaining easier. To save time, busy families may want to add a speed cooker oven. It will be easier to match your appliance needs with the features you want once you have started shopping.

You can visit showrooms or retailers on your own or with a professional designer. This will allow you to see the products in action and determine if the appliances are a good fit for your needs. You might consider an oven or range with larger temperature and time displays depending on how big your kitchen is. You may also find certain buttons, knobs and other tactical features more accessible. Locate retailers by visiting the manufacturer’s websites or using Find a Showroom. Even if you are not located near a retailer, your wish list can still help narrow your search based upon the specifications and features on the manufacturers’ websites.

STYLE AND FINISHES

After establishing your appliance budget, functional requirements and style preferences, you can narrow down your options by choosing the style and finish that best suits your kitchen design. Stainless steel is the preferred finish for luxury kitchens. It is durable and long-lasting, while its sleek surface makes it easy to clean. A luxury trend is to integrate appliances with custom-made cabinets. This means that cabinet maker custom-made panels according to the manufacturer’s specifications.

The best thing about higher-end appliances? They are often designed with timeless lines that can be used in various kitchen styles. Monogram also offers a distinction between European-style and chef-inspired Professional styles.

It would be best to consider the impact that handles, buttons, touchscreens, and illumination have on the look you are going for when choosing appliances. To help you visualize how they work together, create a mood board with all of your options.

BUY SMART

Choose your retailer carefully when buying appliances. To help you make the right choice, the sales representative should be familiar with all different brands’ features. Retailers can also help with complicated installation requirements specific to your kitchen design.

Knowing when and where you can buy can help your budget. There are often deep discounts as part of seasonal sales or promotions around major holidays in the American retail market. You can also find rebates and promotions on the manufacturer’s websites, as well as local dealers offering additional discounts.

CHOOSE THE BEST APPLIANCES

After you have set a budget and a vision for the kitchen, it’s time to research specific appliances. You will need to consider each category’s different brands and distinguishing factors to find the best appliances that meet your needs.

Energy Star-rated appliances can help increase your home’s energy efficiency, save money and reduce the impact on the environment. See our article on Energy Efficient Kitchen for tips on positioning your appliances to maximize energy efficiency.

COOKING APPLIANCES

Range or Cooktop

The most important decision you will make when designing your kitchen is having a separate cooktop, wall oven(s), or freestanding range that integrates the oven and cooktop in one appliance. Both options have their advantages and disadvantages depending on your kitchen’s use. A range might be more convenient for you if you prefer to cook on the stovetop but finish in the oven. Freestanding ranges can be more cost-effective and are easier to set up. A separate zone with a cooktop or a wall oven may be more suitable if you have several cooks. Your kitchen layout and space limitations may dictate your decision. A small or open kitchen might not allow for a separate wall oven.

You can choose to use a range or a stovetop. But you must first decide on the fuel source. There are a variety of ranges available: electric, gas and dual-fuel. Gas ranges have iron burner grates and front-facing controls. Dual fuel is very popular as it offers even heat in the oven and precise, controllable gas burners on your cooktop. The right size range will be important for your kitchen layout. The standard range widths are 30 inches, 36 inches and 48 inches. Professional-sized ranges 36 and 48 inches often offer options to customize the cooking surface, such as an additional burner or an optional built-in grill or griddle.

There are three fuel options for cooktops: gas, electric radiant, or induction. You have the same choices of sizes, configurations, burners, and customizable accessories available as in ranges. Induction and electric radiant cooktops have a seamless appearance and can be flush installed. They are also easier to clean than traditional gas cooktops. Induction cooktops are the most efficient choice. They transfer electromagnetic energy quickly to pans and bring them up to temperature much faster than any other method. Induction cooktops require that you use high-quality ferrous metal cookware. The heat is transferred only by magnetic interaction between the pans and the coils.

Wall Ovens

The features of a wall oven may be affected by how much baking, broiling or roasting you do. Ovens are available in standard sizes, 27 inches or 30 inches. They can be either single- or dual-oven. If your kitchen is large enough to accommodate double ovens, they are great for those who host large families or cook for many people. Wall ovens do not allow custom panel faces, but they can be mounted under the counter or flush with the cabinetry to create a more integrated look.

Convection is another oven feature worth considering. It uses a fan that circulates the oven’s air clockwise and counterclockwise to even cook in a smaller oven with fewer hotspots. Convection allows you to cook multiple items simultaneously, which is a great advantage for people who bake many cookies. Convection’s reduced cooking time can result in energy savings for your home.

Speed cooking Ovens

Our Advantium is a combination convection/microwave oven. The Advantium uses a high-intensity halogen light with ceramic or radiant cooking elements to quickly cook the outside of food and microwave energy to cook the inside evenly. Speed cooking ovens can accommodate busy lives and are a great option for those who need the versatility of a double oven in a smaller space. If you upgrade to a speedy cooking stove, you can choose between 240V or 120V models.

Ventilation

Proper ventilation, whether via a wall-mounted island or downdraft system, removes steam and heat from the kitchen and cleans and greases your appliances and cabinets. The fan’s ability to move air at a rate of cubic feet per minute (CFM) is one of the most important characteristics to look for when choosing a ventilation system. The recommended rate for venting is 1 CFM per 100 BTU heat output from your range or cooktop. If your cooktop’s total output is 60,000 BTUs, you might consider a 600 CFM hood. You should also consider other features such as lighting, warming lamps, and utensil racks to enhance its functionality in the kitchen.

Ducting is another important aspect of ventilation. Duct your ventilation system outside to remove as much heat and odor as possible, provided that your home’s layout allows it. You can also opt for a ductless or recirculating ventilation system hood. This relies more on filtration to control odors.

REFRIGERATION

Refrigerators

First, choose one of these installation types when choosing a fridge for your kitchen.

  • Freestanding refrigerators: These fridges can be viewed from many angles and often have large capacities. They are also easy to move if your design changes. They are not flush with the kitchen countertop when they are installed.
  • Built-in: These units are typically taller than the freestanding ones, but they fit flush with your countertop depth to create a seamless look.
  • Columns and Fully Integrated: These units are so seamless into the design it is difficult to tell them apart from the rest.

These three options come in different sizes and capacities to suit your individual food storage needs.

After you have decided on a type of installation, you will need to think about the configuration of your refrigerator. French door models that have a bottom freezer and the popular side-by-sides require less door swing space. They also make accessing the freezer for children easier than top-freezer models. If you have the space and layout to accommodate large families, you might consider upgrading to an all-freezer or a refrigerator and freezer combination.

Supplemental Under Counter Refrigeration

Consider adding additional refrigeration to your existing refrigerator if you entertain often.

Refrigeration Drawers: By including a separate refrigerator drawer under your kitchen’s counter, you can increase the fridge’s capacity in any area of your kitchen that you use the most.

Beverage Centers & Wine Chillers: These units can be used to free up space in your fridge for dishes and platters, and they can also keep your beverages chilled at the optimal temperature for serving.

Ice Makers

A dedicated ice machine is a great convenience for entertainers. You should choose the type of ice it makes, nugget or gourmet clear. This can make a big difference in specialty cocktails and other drinks. Make sure the storage and ice production levels are appropriate for your family.

DISHWASHER

When choosing a dishwasher, consider the style. Choose a finish that matches your other appliances. While most dishwashers can be installed flush to the kitchen countertop, custom panels or integrated dishwashers that match your cabinets are becoming a popular design choice. Next, consider cleaning features. It would be best to look for dishwashers that offer a range of cleaning options and cycles to suit your cleaning needs. If your family uses frequent washing cycles, look for models with different capacities or soil levels. You might also consider models with stemware holders and cycles for fine china for entertainers. You’ll also want to compare the types of racks and jets depending on what dishes you will be cleaning.

When it is running, the dishwasher’s noise level is one of the most important aspects to consider. Dishwasher noise levels can be rated in decibels. The quieter the dishwasher, the lower its decibel rating will be. For the quietest dishwashers, look for a rating of 45 decibels and less.

Most dishwashers are available in standard sizes of 24-inch and 18-inch. This is ideal for small spaces or to be used as a second dishwasher when you have a wet bar.

Eco-conscious customers should also consider the dishwasher’s water consumption and energy consumption. For superior energy efficiency and a reduced environmental impact, choose a model that has been Energy Star-qualified.

DESIGN FOR SUCCESS

It is worth taking the time to research appliances’ features and create a design plan before you start shopping.

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