Home Elektroinstallation Elektrische Maschinen Electric stoves

Technisches Englisch (53)

Electric stoves

Life happens in the kitchen which is often a gathering (sich treffen/versammeln) place for friends and family. Owning a good stove is therefore even more important apart from choosing the right one for your purposes and having a qualified electrician to wire it
Life happens in the kitchen which is often a gathering (sich treffen/versammeln) place for friends and family. Owning a good stove is therefore even more important apart from choosing the right one for your purposes and having a qualified electrician to wire it
(Bild: S. Boiselle/www.agiro.de)

zu Teil 52

When you cook a delicious meal, you realize the value of a kitchen filled with high-quality utensils and appliances. Most of us, however, hardly ever think about how they function. Being an electrician on the other hand involves knowing the ins and outs of different kinds of stoves and ovens, for example. Jacob’s time to shine.

Jacob: Hi, Good Looking, how’s it going? Ready for the installation of a new stove here?

Lucy:  Of course, buddy. What exactly do we need to do? 

Jacob: Well, have a look, this beauty of a stove has just been delivered and our company has been asked to install it. The two of us must do the preparatory work and the boss is coming to check on it later. 

Lucy: Looks like a high-end product to me. Seems to be an electric one because I can’t see any gas hobs. But that would be a bit too traditional for my taste anyway. 

Jacob: Oh, I wouldn’t dismiss gas as being only traditional or old-fashioned. They definitely have their advantages. That’s what many gourmet chefs say at least. They are easy to control and give instant heat. 

Lucy: Sounds like you’re a gourmet chef yourself or you’ve watched too many cooking shows on TV. One big disadvantage, however, is that cleaning a gas hob is mostly hard work. But that’s probably something you men are not too much worried about and therefore a gas stove wouldn’t be my first choice. 

Jacob: But guess what, my dear, there are nowadays innovative things such as gas on glass hobs. A hybrid of ceramic and gas hobs, so to speak. They are gas hobs with a mounted ceramic glass lid on top. So, there you are with your objections regarding their cleaning. The glass worktop looks much more stylish also but they can take a while to heat up and you must be a little more careful and precise when controlling them. However, they distribute heat as evenly and effectively as the traditional gas hobs. Anyway, there is no ultimate best solution regarding the types of hobs. It all depends on what you want from a cooker.

Lucy: Okay, I see. Since this here is an electric stove, what do I need to know about them?

Jacob: Well, they work by thermal conduction. There are electric wires inside the coils under the burners which are heated up by electricity. The amount of electricity going through them determines how hot the respective coil will get. You control this with the dial on the stove, which is, of course, not as precise as with a gas stove. You can either have electric plate hobs or ceramic hobs. Electric plate hobs are the most budget-friendly option but can’t really compare to the more expensive other types of hobs. But they’re still popular and absolutely sufficient if you don’t cook much or only have a small kitchen.

Lucy: Which are the most common ones? 

Jacob: I’d say ceramic hobs. They look modern and are easy to use and clean. Their working mechanism is very similar to the electric plate hobs. Their coiled elements, however, are beneath a toughened glass surface. The heat is radiated through the glass surface to the pots and pans and the cooking zones turn red when they heat up. It takes a little while until you can start cooking. Similarly, they stay hot for some time after heating up and also when you’ve switched them off. Therefore, you should take your pan from the cooktop when your meal is done and, of course, wait until the elements have cooled down before you wipe the cooktop. 

Lucy: Oh Jacob, I’m interested in the technical details at the moment, not how long it takes them to heat up and cool down. 

Jacob: But that’s important, Lucy. This is what distinguishes ceramic hobs from induction hobs. The transfer of heat is much faster with an induction stove. You only need to wait very shortly for your pots and pans to heat up and likewise they cool down very quickly despite some residual heat of the cooktop. 

Lucy: So, what’s the secret behind induction cooking, house husband? How does it work?

Jacob: Induction hobs also have a ceramic glass surface but they heat up differently. They use high-frequency electromagnets for generating heat. In other words, electricity is generated by using magnetism. When electricity passes through the coil of metal underneath the glass surface, a magnetic field is created. When a pan with a magnetized base is placed on top, the circuit is completed and the pan is directly heated up. The hob itself remains cool, apart from some residual heat from the pan. The electrical components are cooled during cooking by a fan underneath the ceramic glass. It turns itself on and off as needed. 

Lucy: I’m confused. Can you explain the process step by step? 

Jacob: Of course. When you turn on the power, a current flows through the coil of metal and generates a magnetic field around and above it. Place a pan made from ferrous metal on the hob and the magnetic field will penetrate the metal of the pan. Now the electric current is flowing through the pan too. It swirls around inside the metal of the pan and the energy that is produced is turned into heat. In this way, the hot pan heats the food inside it. 

Lucy: Okay, understood. So I can only use pots or pans that contain iron particles, like stainless steel or cast iron.

Jacob: Well, other materials only work if they have a ferrous or ferromagnetic base. Then you can also use aluminium, copper, glass, or ceramic. You can find out about this very easily by holding a magnet to the bottom of the pan. If it sticks, it’ll work with induction.

Lucy: What if I use a normal pan? 

Jacob: Nothing will happen because for electricity to work, you need a circuit including ferrous cookware. Otherwise, no circuit will be created and no heat will be generated. 

Lucy: So, to wrap it up, it seems that induction hobs are the most effective because they’re fast and responsive, easy to clean et cetera, et cetera if it were not for the price tag they come with, I assume. But let’s grab a bite to eat now, Jacob, after having talked about cooking so much. I’m famished

Jacob: Okay, I’m afraid of hangry women. You never know what they’re up to. Let’s go, I’ll explain the installation part to you later on.  

So much for today. If it were not for the cooking, we would all be gourmet chefs by now after these detailed explanations. Stay tuned! 

Über die Autorin
Sabine Barz

English communication-skills trainer


Das Neueste der
ema direkt in Ihren Posteingang!