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Buying and operating tips—cooking appliances

What should you consider when buying a cooking appliance?

Buying tips

Read the EnerGuide label.
Choose a model with the lowest energy consumption rating.

Look for a self-cleaning oven.
These models use heat in the cleaning cycle, but they are also better insulated and maintain the internal temperature better.

Ask about ovens with a convection setting.
They can reduce baking time by up to 30 percent.

Consider an oven with probes for measuring internal temperatures.
These models prevent overcooking food and reduce the need to open the door during cooking to check temperatures; both practices waste energy.

Choose an induction or halogen (ceramic glass) cooktop.
This type is more energy efficient than conventional burners.

Purchase the right size oven.
A smaller model will use less energy.

Operating tips

Follow these best practices for even more energy savings.

Read the owner's manual.
It will provide tips to ensure that your specific model is operating as efficiently as possible.

Preheat the oven only for baking.
In other cases, preheating is a waste of energy.

Turn off the oven a few minutes early.
The remaining heat will finish the job.

Keep the oven door shut whenever possible.
Every time it's opened during use, as much as 20 percent of the heat escapes.

Use the right size cookware.
A pot should just cover the cooking ring for maximum efficiency.

Use the right type of cookware.
For example, aluminum pans are unsuitable for halogen induction cooktops.

Use only smooth, flat-bottomed cookware.
Food cooks faster when pots make full contact with the cooking element.

Use minimal heat.
Once water is boiling, choose the lowest setting required to maintain the boil.

Keep drip pans clean under conventional burners.
Lining the pans with aluminum foil may seem like a good solution, but foil reflects heat that can damage the element.

Keep oven door seals clean and tight.
If a sheet of paper placed in the door slides around or slips out, or if light from a flashlight placed inside can be seen through the seals, replace the seals. (Use the flashlight test on fridge and freezer doors too.)

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