CAPACITY AND SPACE
As cookers come in a wide range of styles and sizes, their capacity varies from model to model. The last thing you want when buying a new cooker is to find your favourite dishes and cookware won’t fit inside.
Ensure you make the best purchase by reading our handy hints first. We outline some common cooker layouts and capacities to help you find exactly what you need.
The two main factors that affect the capacity of the oven are the size of the appliance and the number of oven and grill cavities.
A standard width, freestanding cooker with a single oven is likely to have a capacity of 50-70 litres. If you choose a model with a double oven, you can expect a total of 70- 80 litres, spread between the two cavities. Remember that while a double oven usually offers more overall space and flexibility, the individual ovens may be smaller than an equivalent single oven model.
If you’re looking at range cookers with multiple compartments, the capacity increases significantly. The biggest models are likely to have a total capacity of around 120-150 litres. This is especially true when you consider that range cookers are typically over 90 cm wide – much bigger than the standard 60 cm cooker.
It’s generally recommended to look for a model with at least 65 litres if you have a busy family or like to bake.
Remember that some range cookers come with warming ovens or storage drawers which aren’t used for cooking. If you’ve decided you want a range cooker, it is worth checking that the oven configuration and capacity will suit your needs.
Look for a model with at least 65 litres if you have a busy family.
SPACE ON THE HOB
As with oven capacity, the number of cooking zones on a hob depends on the size of the appliance, as a wider model has room for more zones.
Standard 60 cm cookers, regardless of the fuel type, tend to have four cooking zones on the hob. The size of the burners can vary as some cookers come with zones that are designed for specific cookware, like a wok.
Hob burners also have different power levels, making some more suitable for rapid boiling or frying. It’s worth checking that the cooker has a hob that is big enough for your pots and pans.
Range cookers also vary in the number of zones they have. You should bear in mind that a larger appliance doesn’t always have more zones. Most 90 cm range cookers have five burners on the hob, but some larger models still have the same amount.
Larger range models can have up to six or seven burners which is plenty for keen chefs or large families. As with regular cookers, the size, power, and purpose of the zones can vary, so it is worth checking the hob does everything you need.
WHAT ELSE TO CONSIDER
An important part of the oven capacity is the number of shelves you can fit inside. Most single ovens come with either one or two shelves, while two cavity and double oven models either have one or two per oven.
Some cookers have storage drawers for baking trays and other cookware. These are more often found on single oven models where the drawer is below the main cavity, or range cookers that have lots of space. Double oven models don’t normally have space for extra storage because of the extra cavity.
A lot of models have adjustable feet so you can adapt the height to match your kitchen units for a seamless appearance. Some even have wheels on the feet so you can move them out to clean behind the cooker easily.
An important part of the oven capacity is the number of shelves you can fit inside.