Perhaps you are considering a kitchen renovation to give this room a well-needed makeover and add value to your home. You’ve planned your layout, picked the perfect finish for your faucets and even finalized your color scheme. However, no kitchen is fit for use without the right appliances.
If you are remodeling your kitchen, it’s important to give thought to the type of appliances you would like in your new kitchen and whether your existing appliances should be replaced.
As with all things, kitchen appliances have a finite life expectancy. Of the major home appliances, gas ranges can last the longest with a life expectancy of up to 19 years, with dryers and dishwashers expected to last around 13 years.
Make a note of how old your appliances are when you begin your renovations and factor in whether you need to replace some, if not all of them. A good rule is to see whether your appliance is older than half its lifespan. If so, it may be worth replacing, as you will save on potential long-term repair costs, and can also upgrade to a newer, more eco-friendly model.
In this article, we will look at some of the things to consider before heading to the showroom.
When it comes to your cooking appliance there are many options to choose from. You can opt for a single unit that combines the cooktop and oven or have these placed separately in your kitchen. Depending on your design preference and cooking style, some options may be more appealing than others. Here is a rundown of the various cooking appliances you can choose from:
- Ranges: This option combines your cooktop with your oven into one freestanding unit. They often come with added functions such as a separate grill and warming drawer allowing you to store food inside it. From stainless steel to vintage cast iron, there are plenty of design options, and a range cooker can also serve as an attractive centerpiece to your kitchen.
- Cooktops: From gas to electric, burners to induction, cooktops can come as part of a range cooker or as a separate countertop. The benefits of the latter are that it allows you to move around the kitchen more freely without having to disrupt another cook by adding or taking things out of the oven. This separation of function can be viewed as a convenience for some, especially those who like to cook and bake separately.
- Ovens: Gas or electric ovens can come as part of a range cooker or be wall-mounted and standalone units.
Aside from your cooking appliance, refrigerators are probably the next major appliance in your kitchen. Most come with a built-in freezer at the bottom, however, the functionality offered has grown tremendously over the years. Along with an ice dispenser, some refrigerators come with a built-in brewing system offering you the convenience of a hot beverage.
Smart refrigerators come with Wi-Fi connectivity with onscreen full internet access, allowing you to adjust the temperature or ask it to make more ice. Some are also able to keep track of the expiry dates of your food.
Keep the energy efficiency of your new refrigerator in mind before making a purchase by checking its Energy Star label.
If you have a large family, entertain regularly or simply do not enjoy washing up by hand then a dishwasher could be a welcome addition to your life. Similar to other modern kitchen appliances, such as refrigerators, dishwashers are becoming increasingly energy efficient and also come with smart technology and Wi-Fi connectivity.
Available in a variety of colors ranging from stainless steel, white, black, slate, and black stainless, some of the newer brands are sleek and discreet looking in design. When shopping for your next model, here are some of the things to look out for:
- Capacity: Your choice of dishwasher may depend on the number of people in your household. How many dishes will you put in your dishwasher regularly? For a couple, an 18-inch dishwasher is adequate, whereas a family may benefit from a 24-inch model which can hold 12 to 16 place settings.
- Type: Dishwashers can be fitted into your kitchen in a number of ways. They can be a standalone appliance, built-in dishwashers which match the rest of your kitchen design, countertop or drawer dishwashers.
- Washing features: Today’s dishwashers come with many additional features. There are different cleaning cycles for washing pots and pans, glassware, or china and some can even sense the dirt level on the dishes to select the appropriate cleaning cycle. In some of the newer models, wash jets are installed for cleaning reusable bottles.
- Food disposal: For most people, scraping and rinsing dishes before loading them into the dishwasher is a chore. Some dishwashers have the added feature of disposing of food during the rinse cycle, chopping food particles and flushing them from the dishwasher.
- Sound level: Traditionally, dishwashers are known to be quite noisy, modern models come in a quieter, or even silent volume. A quieter model is a good choice if your bedroom is near the kitchen and you load the dishwasher overnight.
Microwaves can come as standalone features, concealed behind a cabinet or be built-in to your kitchen wall in combination with an oven. The three types of microwave on the market include:
- Solo microwaves: Ideal for simple cooking and for reheating food
- Grill microwaves: Ideal for grilling and reheating food
- Convection microwaves: Ideal for grilling and reheating food as well as baking
Before purchasing a new model, consider the size and wattage of your microwave. The higher the wattage, the more powerful your microwave will be. In addition to standard features including preheat, defrost or pre-programmed settings, added features such as ‘auto cook’ allow you to heat food without selecting the time or power settings. If you have young children, microwaves with a child lock facility can also be purchased, allowing for a stress-free cooking experience.
With these tips, you can feel confident beginning your kitchen renovations and making the right choices when it comes to your kitchen appliances.