Vivien Bui
Vivien Bui is a Communications Specialist in the Office of Public Affairs.
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The numbers are in: Americans are seeing the benefits of induction appliances. In Consumer Report’s June 2022 nationally representative survey, almost 70% of people said they would consider induction for their next range or cooktop. Today we’re breaking down how the technology works, why induction appliances have soared in popularity, and what you gain from making the switch (hint: this includes rebates).

How it Works

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Clean Energy 101: Induction Stoves and Ovens
U.S. Department of Energy

Traditional cooktops use a flame or a burner that radiates and conducts heat to your pots and pans. Induction cooking uses an electromagnetic field that transfers currents directly to the cookware placed on the glass surface. The heat is created from within the cookware itself; as soon as you remove it from a burner, the heating stops. This way, you can cook your food without the cooktop getting as hot as it would on a traditional gas or electric cooktop. Any pots or pans with a flat bottom that a magnet sticks to will work with an induction cooktop. The latest models have ceramic-glass surfaces, which are durable and crack-resistant. 

Why Americans are Making the Switch 

Better for You, Better for the Environment 

Because induction appliances only create heat through pots and pans on their surfaces, they are much more efficient than traditional cooktop appliances. Induction appliances are up to three times more efficient than gas stoves, and up to 10% more efficient than conventional smooth top electric ranges. This improved efficiency performance can result in lower energy costs as well as lower rates of air pollution associated with energy generation. 

Induction stoves are also free of the indoor air pollutants that come from gas stoves: burning gas for cooking produces nitrous oxides (NOX), carbon monoxide (CO), and formaldehyde (HCHO), which can have negative health effects and exacerbate respiratory conditions. According to a 2022 study, 12.7% of current childhood asthma in the United States is attributable to gas stove use. 

Induction stoves also have built-in safety features:; when pots and pans are removed their surfaces do not get as hot as other cooktops, the stove cannot be accidentally turned on, and most will automatically shut off if a pot or pan isn’t detected. Making the induction upgrade means reduced risk of burns and no more rushing home out of fear that you’ve left the stove on.    

Faster Cook Time 

An induction cooktop heats up your cookware – and your food – more efficiently, because it heats your cookware directly. Consumer Reports has found induction cooktops can boil water 20-40% faster than tested gas and traditional electric cooktops. The electromagnetic field also provides more precise, even heating compared to traditional cooktops.  

When you’re all done, cool down and cleaning time is also quick and easy; the glass top is only as warms as it gets when you place afrom a hot object on top of it, and the smooth flat surface means you don’t have to reach into crevices and under burners to wipe up spills.  

Long-Term Savings 

Induction stoves haven’t always been very financially accessible. The good news is that prices have fallen considerably. Some four-burner induction ranges now cost around $1,000, and can lower your gas and electricity bills. If you are a renter or want to try the induction cooking experience before swapping out your entire cooktop, consider a single-burner induction appliance, which can cost as little as $70. 

While not yet available, President Biden’s Investing in America plan will soon allow many Americans that replace their gas or conventional electric cooktop with an induction cooktop will be eligible for rebates up to $840. Learn more at our all-new Energy Savings Hub, where homeowners and renters can save money while saving the planet. 

Making the Switch 

Those who already use induction cooktops already love them. 

"You know how they say a watched pot never boils? Well, if you have four minutes to spare with your induction cooktop, that saying is proved wrong,” said AnneMarie Horowitz, Philadelphia resident and communications staffer with the U.S. Department of Energy. “It's endlessly helpful having a stove that's faster, safer, and better for the planet." 

For more information, check out our recent blog post addressing misinformation on DOE appliance standards.