I currently have a St George CC355 cooktop (2 burner) paired with an electric grill. The cooktop is hardwired in and the grill plugs in to a powerpoint under the bench.

The ceramic cooktop shattered the other day and now I am trying to get my head around a replacement. I like the sound of induction, but have read so many things that are turning me off the idea, not least of all is the fact that I might have to get an electrician to rewire things (eek), as I have read that you need 3 phase power. Is this true?

I am a bit stuck for options as the current appliances are a non-standard size, meaning I have to find a 70cm replacement to fit the hole (or I could go bigger to say 80cm). I really don't need anymore burners than that — 90cm with 5 burns would be complete overkill.

I have found a Bosch 70cm ceramic cooktop, which will do the job, but, sadly, there is no 70cm induction version, so I would be pushed to an 80cm if I was to choose that alternative. I am wondering if I will need an electrician for both, as the ceramic says it is 6.6kW and the induction is 7.4kW, but my current cooktop is only 3.4kW.

I would be very appreciative of some advice before I go down the wrong path for the wrong reasons. Thanks.

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    Where are you on this planet? – ThreePhaseEel Nov 23 '20 at 3:51
  • Any modern cooktop is going to be designed to work on 1-phase or 3-phase. (you jumper it either way). Which type it is will make no difference on whether an electrician is needed to install. As an avid gas lover, I like being able to instantly turn the heat to any setting I want. Electric is a nightmare to control. But I hear induction corrects that problem; if it works the way I think it works, that makes sense. – Harper - Reinstate Monica Nov 23 '20 at 4:44
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    ThreePhaseEel I am in Newcastle, Australia. – Lyndelle McMillan Nov 23 '20 at 6:07
  • Okay, so the phases don't make a difference, but what about the Total kWs. I don't really understand electricity at all. You are saying I will need an electrician either way and they will jumper it off the oven. But so much I have read says it has to have it's own direct connection back to the circuit board… is this not the case? If not, then what am I worried about? I could go either. I get your love of gas, but I am not connected to gas (even though this was originally a gas subdivision… I got left out for some inexplicable reason). – Lyndelle McMillan Nov 23 '20 at 6:12
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    No not jumped off the oven (that is a dangerous assumption), the connections on the hob are made to be suitable for either single or three phase - basically technical jargon. When you find a suitable hob just get an electrician and have it done properly, much safer all round. – Solar Mike Nov 23 '20 at 6:16

I agree with the comments saying you should have an electrician do it. As pointed out by @Ecnerwal they will be able to advise before you decide which appliance to buy and help you make an informed decision.

The key factor will be the size of the cable to your existing hob. It depends on the power of the new hob, the distance to the fuse box and whether the cable runs through insulation or not. More powerful hob, greater distance and going through insulation = bigger cable required.

If the existing cable is suitable it would be a quick job for the electrician to fit the new hob. If the cable is too small for the hob then they'll need to run a bigger cable and that will cost more. Depending on the construction of your house might require lifting floors or making holes in walls.

I won't pretend to do the calculations but there are cable calculators online that will help. For the UK it seems that 2.5mm2 might be ok if you're lucky, 6mm2 is often ok, 10mm2 is the future-proof option. Best have an electrician make that call.

Also +1 for induction :-)

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    I would suggest that you have an electrican come for a short call to evaluate what you have, and estimate what you would need to pay them for various levels of upgrade, so that you can shop "eyes wide open" when considering cooktops that are nearly twice the power of the one you had, rather than go out, buy one, and only THEN find out what your installation cost would be. – Ecnerwal Nov 23 '20 at 17:47
  • This is very good advice Ecnerwal and I might do just that. – Lyndelle McMillan Nov 24 '20 at 1:08
  • Thanks Carl for you comprehensive answer… I just wish I understood electricity a bit better… it scares me. – Lyndelle McMillan Nov 24 '20 at 1:09

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