If you have been looking at getting yourself an induction hob, There’s a good chance you may have come across ‘flex’ models. But what is a Flex induction hob?
As you may know, they do look a little different to your standard induction hobs, and they definitely work a little differently, too. They also tend to be more expensive than the standard – but why is this, and why is it worth paying that much extra for the privilege? Let’s take a closer look.
What is flex induction hob technology?
Generally speaking, flex induction hobs are similar to standard induction systems in that they also induction as a heating mechanism and the same symbols. That means that they, too, need pots and pans with magnetic bases in order to heat up.
However, standard induction hobs limit you to the sizes and shapes of the pots and pans that you can use. This is because cookware needs to match the size and shape of the zones, or rings, that are provided – or the hob may not be able to detect them properly.
Therefore, the heat is not spread out evenly, and your cooking does not go as well as you might hope! In many ways, this is the biggest disadvantage to owning an induction hob.
Many of us get used to using all kinds of pots and pans on our general hobs, be they gas or electric, and have no trouble adapting the shape of the pot to the size of the rings. However, induction hobs do not have that luxury. At least – they didn’t, until relatively recently.
With the invention of flex induction hobs, the issue of the shapes and sizes of the rings and zones is no longer relevant. Flex induction hobs use individual sensors set out across the hob to detect the exact size and shape of each pot and pan that is placed on the hob surface.
That way, they can simply heat up the specific area in which the pot or pan has been placed, just as efficiently as a standard induction hob would heat up a pan of the correct size on the correct ring.
Flex induction hobs can also adjust the temperature for you, autonomously – that means no more spilt pots of pasta or boiling water for you to have to mop up. Ultimately, these are induction hobs with deluxe features thrown in for extra convenience (and, let’s face it, a little fun, too!).
This is amazing technology – and it’s likely to save lots of kitchen owners a lot of time and hassle. But the pricing often tends to be a point of contention. Should you save up a little bit extra for a flex induction hob, or just stick with the standard?
Are flex induction hobs worth it?
On the whole, yes – flex induction hobs are great if you want unlimited flexibility while cooking. However, it’s a steep price to pay if you are really unsure about whether or not you’ll benefit from it.
As you know, induction hobs tend to fall on the more expensive side of the kitchen appliances market. Although they have been around for a while now, they are still relatively ‘new’ compared to traditional standards, and naturally, increase in efficiency as various brands perfect the technology.
Then comes the flex induction hob. You get all of the benefits of owning an induction hob without having to worry about precisely placing your pots on specific rings and zones. This is largely what drives up the price. You’re always going to pay more for kitchen appliances if convenience is greater – it’s a fact of life!
If you find yourself feeling too confined by the set rings of standard induction hobs, why settle for something that won’t do what you need it to? If you’re shopping around and haven’t used an induction hob before, it may actually be worth putting the extra money aside to invest in flex technology.
After all, flex induction hobs can help you to save energy, too. There’s no more missed pots or zones firing up when they shouldn’t. That also means you can expect fantastic performance from flex induction hobs, too.
That said, induction hob technology at its most basic is still fantastically useful. More energy-efficient and arguably more precise than traditional cooktops, if you are new to induction cooking and only have a small budget, think carefully about whether or not you really want to go all-out on the flashiest models.
For those of you who have been cooking with induction hobs for some time, we’d recommend looking at flex induction as a considerable upgrade. After all, if there’s anything your kitchen is always going to need, it’s going to be added convenience – and, flex induction is the height of the technology right now. If you to induction and still weighing the benefits you may like to read our blog about using an induction hob for best results.