â€‹â€‹â€‹â€‹â€‹â€‹â€‹â€‹â€‹â€‹â€‹â€‹â€‹â€‹â€‹Natural Gas Ranges
The power of precision temperature controlâ€‹
One reason natural gas ranges are such a popular choice â€‹for homeowners is that they are energy efficient. Helping you use less energy with every meal you cook, they can help you reduce your monthly energy bills.
â€‹Download our Natural Gas Ranges fact sheet
Natural gas ranges offer the following benefits:
- Energy efficiency. A natural gas range will cook nearly two meals with the same amount of primary energy* it takes to cook one meal electrically.
- Precision temperature control. The gas burner provides instant response and visible flame for precision temperature control.
- Great for baking. Natural gas ovens provide reliable baking results.
Shopping for a natural gas rangeâ€‹â€‹
When selecting your gas range:
Weigh purchase price against operating costs. Although it may cost a little more to purchase an energy-efficient natural gas range, keep in mind that the less energy your range uses, the more you save each month on your monthly energy bills. Over time, the higher efficiency gas range will pay for itself, and sometimes more.
Talk to friends, family, and neighbors. You can learn a lot by asking people who have gone through the process of buying a range and have used it for awhile.
- Educate yourself. With so many styles, sizes, and features to choose from, you'll want to take some time to learn what's available so you can get the range that's perfect for you. This is an appliance that you will probably use every day, so it pays to be prepared. Read on for a list of common styles, sizes, and features.
Styles, sizes, features, and finishesâ€‹â€‹â€‹
Styles and sizes
The following are common styles and sizes you'll find when shopping for a natural gas range.
Freestanding. This self-contained range rests on the floor. It can have a second oven-conventional, convection or microwave-above or beside the main oven.
Conventional. May have a single oven and low broiler or an oven and broiler in the same compartment. The cooking surface has four to six burners, one or two of which may convert to a griddle surface. Available in 20- to 40-inch widths.
Double oven. A cooktop and two ovens, one above and one below the cooking surface. Models which combine a free standing gas range with an eye-level microwave oven save counter space and increase cooking flexibility. Available in 30-inch widths.
Slide-in. This freestanding range with unfinished sides fits between two base cabinets. If one side is visible, a side panel is installed to give it a finished look. Available in 30 and 36 inch widths.
Built-in oven and cooktop. The oven and cooktop are separate so each can be built into the space that best suits your kitchen design. Cooktops are available in 20- to 36-inch widths.
Commercial range. Comes with high-output burners, over-sized ovens and a wide selection of options. Must be properly vented.
You may wish to consider the following in your decision-making process:
Convection oven. Transfers heat by forced air. Moving air currents speed heat penetration so food cooks faster at temperatures 25 to 50 degrees lower than a conventional oven. You can use your favorite recipes with this oven, but you might have to adjust cooking time, temperature and rack position. Correct rack positions are important in ovens where heat enters from the top, as in the convection range, because the closer the food is to the top, the faster it cooks.
Convection/microwave combination. Performs six functions quickly and efficiently... bake only, broil only, microwave only, convect-and-microwave, microwave-and-broil, and self-clean.
Low temperature ovens. Oven temperatures can be set as low as 140 F to 200 F to thaw foods, warm serving dishes, and keep cooked foods warm without drying them out.
â€‹Continuous-cleaning (catalytic): Mixes catalytic materials into the porcelain enamel coating of the oven walls or liner panels. Most soil oxidizes when the oven is operated at normal baking and broiling temperatures. The higher the temperature, the faster the stains are removed.
Self-cleaning (pyrolytic): The oven cleans during a separate high heat cycle (85 F to 1,000 F). Reduces oven soil to white ash which you later remove with a damp cloth.
Programmed or clock-controlled ovens
â€‹Cook-hold or delay-cook-hold: Oven automatically comes on at the time previously set, cooks for the indicated time, then oven temperature automatically lowers to "keep warm."
Cook-off: Food cooks for the period of time set, then automatically shuts off.
Delay-cook-off: Oven automatically comes on at the time previously set, cooks for the indicated time, then automatically shuts off.
Range top options
Low-heat burners. Produce about half the Btus of a standard burner. Make simmering foods and preparing delicate sauces and candies easier.
High-speed burners. Provide about 30% more Btus for quantity cooking or quick boiling.
Sealed burners. Keep spills from leaking below cooktop surface.
Down-draft cooktops. A down-draft ventilating fan is built into a cooking surface and vented outdoors through a sidewall. Most cooktops of this design have optional modules such as a rotisserie, griddle or an extra set of burners.
Griddles. A griddle is a large cooking surface, generally made of aluminum, for use on the cooktop. It may be a separate portable unit which fits over one or two burners, or built in with its own burner.
Porcelain enamel. A common exterior finish that's durable and resistant to heat, stains, acids, scratches, fading and yellowing.
Baked enamel or electrostatically applied polyester. Resists chipping better than porcelain enamel, but is less durable so it stains and scratches more easily.
Stainless steel and chrome plated. Durable, stain resistant and easy to clean. However, if overheated they may turn dark or discolor.
Caring for your natural gas rangeâ€‹â€‹
Use the following as care guidelines to maintain your natural gas range.
Keeping your surface burners clean
Keep areas around surface burners and pilot lights free of soil and food particles for most efficient operation.
Avoid cooking-on food spills by immediately turning off the flame and wiping off the outside of the pan; complete cooking on a different burner. Clean soiled burner with a damp cloth when cool.
Wipe off water from pan bottom before setting on burner to prevent brown spots from forming on burner.
Wipe burner caps after each use to remove fat spatters or spill-over deposits. Remove stubborn stains with a non-abrasive plastic pad and non-abrasive cleanser.
Keeping your oven clean
Follow manufacturer's instructions for cleaning. If not available, use the following:
Standard porcelain enamel interior. This oven must be cleaned by hand so preventive maintenance is important. Minimize the need to clean by propping oven door open slightly for a few minutes when oven is first turned on, and wiping spills as they occur.
Continuous-cleaning (catalytic). This system cleans while it cooks, working most efficiently at higher temperatures for longer periods.
Self-cleaning (pyrolytic). To clean, wipe the outside of the range, the area of the door outside the oven gasket, and the window. Wipe out the inside of the oven with a damp cloth to remove grease and spillovers. Set cleaning cycle according to manufacturer's instructions. Outside surfaces of the range sometimes become very hot during the self-cleaning process so keep children away. After cleaning and cooling, remove light ash residue with a damp cloth. NEVER use oven cleaners on a self-cleaning oven.
Keeping your broiler clean
Place foods on a cool broiler pan to prevent sticking.
Avoid using aluminum foil on broiler grid; it prevents proper drainage and increases spattering and smoking.
Remove broiler pan and grid from range as soon as broiling is completed. Drizzle hot pan and grid with liquid detergent; cover with a damp cloth or paper towel to steam and loosen residue.
Cleaning the exterior of your range
Porcelain and baked enamel. Wipe spills immediately with a paper towel or soft dry cloth so they don't cook on. Avoid wiping hot porcelain with a wet cloth; it may cause crazing. Do not use cleaners with a wax base; heat may cause discoloration. When range is cool, clean with hot sudsy water and rinse. Stubborn spots may be removed with a non-abrasive cleanser. An ammonia and water solution is effective on greasy soil. Polish with a soft dry cloth.
Stainless steel and chrome. Wash with warm sudsy water. Clean spots with a non-abrasive cleaner. Polish with a soft dry cloth.
Using your surface burnersâ€‹
A properly adjusted gas burner flame is blue and has a sharply defined inner core. It supplies instant heat with no leftover heat when the burner is turned "off."
Place pan on the burner before you turn on the flame. Turn control to the "light" position; adjust flame. The proper flame size will depend on the utensil size and material, what you are cooking, and whether you are cooking with liquid. Liquid causes heat to be more evenly distributed so starting flame can be a little higher.
As a general rule, use a full flame for the instant heat needed to bring foods to a rolling boil. Then adjust flame to fit the utensil; flame should hug pan bottom but not lick up the sides. Reduce flame to "simmer" or "low" to keep foods gently boiling; a rolling boil does not cook faster than a low boil.
Use a minimum amount of water for cooking to save time, preserve nutrients and use less energy.
Utensils which conduct heat slowly and/or unevenly (stainless steel, cast iron, enamel, glass and glass ceramic) should be used with a low or medium flame unless food is cooking in a liquid.
Cover pans whenever possible; foods will cook faster and less moisture will escape into your home.
Using your oven
Preheat 5 to 10 minutes for most baked goods such as cakes, breads, and cookies
Preheating is usually not necessary for most casseroles, vegetables and meats. Remember though, that time and temperature listed in most cookbooks is based on a preheated oven. Increase cooking time by a few minutes if you do not preheat.
Adjust racks, if necessary, before turning on the oven. When using two racks, leave at least four inches between them.
Allow at least 1 to 2 inches of space between and around all pans. Stagger pans on two racks to allow good circulation. Two cookie sheets can be used at one time if there is adequate space around the sheets and between the racks.
Prevent hard-to-remove brown spots from forming on window and walls of oven by propping oven door open slightly for a few minutes after you turn on the oven. This allows condensation to escape.
If you use a piece of aluminum foil on the lower rack or oven bottom to catch spills, be sure it doesn't cover openings on the oven bottom.
Cook in "batches" to save time and energy.
Note that opening the oven door during baking prolongs baking time and wastes energy.
Never use the oven to heat the kitchen. The oven was not designed for this purpose and it could be hazardous.
Using your broiler
Trim excess fat from meat to reduce spattering. Cut slashes through the fat around the edges to prevent the meat from curling.
Close the oven door for broiling.
Thaw meats and bring to room temperature before broiling for better browning.
Position pan in broiler compartment according to manufacturer's instructions. Meat stays rarer and cooks faster the closer it is to the flame. For well-done foods and slower cooking, place food farther from the flame.
Energy saving tipsâ€‹â€‹â€‹â€‹
Cook as many things as possible at one time.
Adjust burner flame to size of pan or smaller.
Bake more than one recipe and freeze the extra for later use.
Try not to peek. Opening the oven door can reduce the temperature by as much as 50 F.
Just before food has finished cooking, turn off the oven. The heat inside will finish the cooking.
Broilers do not require preheating. Keep the door closed while broiling.
Never use aluminum foil to line the bottom of the oven. It could block vents, reducing air circulation and oven temperatures. If you wish, line the oven rack with foil, leaving a 1-inch space on all sides.
When possible, cover pots for faster stovetop cooking.
Adjust burner flame to size of pan or smaller.
For more ways to save energy at home, view a list of energy saving programs and tips.