No name brand induction cookers - a good idea?
March 16, 2010 3:30 PM   Subscribe

The singingfish household are renovating their cockroach farm kitchen. We're going to get an induction cooker. My question is, does anyone have any experience with the no name brands of 4 plate induction cookers available on ebay? I'm going to avoid anything without a 2 year warranty, but other than that, is there anything else I should beware of?
posted by singingfish to Home & Garden (3 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
You're aware, I trust, that induction cooking requires ferrous cookware (cast iron, some kinds of stainless steel, steel, or clad ferrous core), right? Aluminum cookware typically doesn't work at all (by itself), nor does glassware like Visions, or ceramic materials, etc. The fact that induction cooktops won't heat hard anodized aluminum cookware has personally always been a dealbreaker for me, as that's my preferred kind of cookware. The other thing I've seen happen several times to these units, in homes of friends who have them, is that the glass top surface gets scratched, then cracks, or is damaged by something being dropped on it, necessitating replacement at a few hundred dollars per repair.

As for the "no name" part of your question, I looked through the first 5 or 6 pages of results for "induction cooktop" on eBay, and didn't see and "no name" 4 place cooktops being offered. Is there a particular product/auction you have in mind? I know that older generations of induction cooktops weren't always equipped with the power measurement electronics of modern units, that automatically adjusts the strength and size of the magnetic fields being generated to the size/thickness of your cookware, to avoid overheating small or thin pans placed on a large "burner," so if I were you, I'd check the specs of whatever product I was considering, to make sure it has that feature.
posted by paulsc at 7:19 PM on March 16, 2010

I've had kitchen appliances crap out, but it's happened at or around 5 years. Most warranties don't last that long, but with name brand appliances at least I know I can easily get a knowledgeable repair person to fix it. I would be wary of purchasing no name anything in appliances unless I was prepared to replace it if it broke. If you do go ahead with no name, pick something with standard dimensions so in the event you do need to replace it, you won't need to replace the countertop or rework the cabinets too.

Induction cookers are pretty cool - just make sure your cookware isn't aluminum, copper, or glass and that the bottoms are really flat. Happy cooking!
posted by cecic at 7:25 PM on March 16, 2010

Forgot to mention that I'm in australia. Here are the kind of induction cookers available in australia on ebay.
posted by singingfish at 8:14 PM on March 16, 2010

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