ECO Friendly AGA type cookers & cooker boilers
Modern Range Cookers
Modern cast iron ranges fueled by gas, oil, wood, coal or via electricity come in many shapes and specifications, but can be roughly divided into these design classifications:-
- Stored heat cooker. The original AGA Cooker was like this, out of fashion due to the very high running costs?
- Single burner ranges in oil, gas, wood pellet or log wood. Fast, efficient replacement of a stored heat cookers, Can till be used as an efficient room heater with a simple time clock to stop waste. Can be 3 oven on some makes as well.
- Twin burner ranges. A boiler and cooker in one appliance. Same fast efficient cooker and room heater as above, but with the added boiler. A condensing model is now available from The Eco Range Cooker Co. for oil fired heating. Not really viable andy more for gas or oil as there are flueless gas ranges, and cheaper to make and run (100% efficient) and standard gas or oil boilers because they are mass produced and cost less than £1,000. Better of with 3 oven cooker cooker and a seperate condensing boiler, unless you are incredibly short of space. .
- Electric. Stored heat or standard cooker in very beautiful case. Electricity cost 12p/kW as apposed to 4p gas and 6p oil so these are very expensive room heater but make good cookers, so always have a radiator in the kitchen with one of these.
- Wood if you want to reduce you CO2 foot print, or if you really want to destroy the atmosphere coal fired cookers. These come with or without boilers. One advantage is 5% VAT if the cooker has a larger than 7kW boiler, quite a saving?
- New wood pellet fired cookers. Cheap to run than oil AGA's, 3 oven. Heat when you want it?
Stored Heat Cookers. ( AGA, Dunsley & Redfyre)
Dr Gustave Dalen, a Swede, invented this concept in the 1920’s. Hitherto, ranges had been open fires where the heat could be diverted around various ovens and griddles, giving a “range” of different cooking choices.
The stored heat concept is nearer the ‘hot box’ principle; a small heat source (2-3 kW.) is constantly kept on heating a massive griddle and the top of a heavy, well insulated oven. The temperature rises slowly but stays relatively constant. There is a large temperature gradient in the ovens and the cook moves items up and down to control the cooking rate. For cakes a ‘cake box’ can be used inside the oven to give even heat. Because the heat up time is about 6 hours, the cooker has to be on 24hrs a day, 365 days of the year. Domestic hot water can be heated off a small boiler, but the burner has to be increased in power to do this.
The only sop to modernisation from the original design concept is the change of fuel from coal to oil, gas or electricity. A chimney is required for all oil models. The AGA and Everhot Electric, and Esse gas flueless do not require a chimney but there is also a power flue and balanced flue gas AGA.
MAIN POINTS TO CONSIDER.
- They give off a steady heat to the kitchen, which is very nice in winter and damp autumn days. A kitchen radiator can be removed (if fitted) with commensurate fuel saving. A very expensive luxory heating a room 24/7, cost about £800 a year extra.
- Oven temperature is steady and constant, as is the temperature of the hot plates.
- Due to the small power source they cannot run central heating, but some can be used for very inefficient domestic hot water. (we mostly spend our time disconnecting them)
- The heat up time is at least 6-8hrs from cold.
- Care has to be taken when doing large amounts of cooking as, if a lot of heat is taken from the oven or hot plates, it takes a relatively long time to build back up again.
- In the summer the kitchen can be hot if the cooker is left on all year for cooking. For this reason most AGA & Refyre Traditional cookers owners usually have a second cooker for summer use.
The running cost of these cookers is about £1,000 - £1,200 per annum (oil at 55p/litre) about three times the cost of running a single or twin burner cooker, 4 times the cost of an ECO Range 3 oven.
Single Burner Ranges, cooker only, no heating or hot water. Oil, Gas, wood, Pellet or coal fired by Eco Range, Esse, Stanley, Heritage & Rayburn.
Efficient cookers and room heater, running costs are low and little difference in the efficiency of the cooker as a room heater too using central heating from the boiler.
At the end of the 1970’s one company, Stanley, from Waterford in Ireland took the concept into the 20th century and redesigned the inside to take a pressure jet burner, sealed doors, and a passageway between the ovens.
A pressure jet burner using a fan can give accurate air/fuel ratios, this means greater efficiency, lower emissions and instant large amounts of heat (5-10 minutes for hot plate cooking). The passageway between ovens means a beautifully even heat and a total heat up time of just 20-40 minutes from cold!
Gas fired the flueless cooker from ESSE is 100% efficient. Its cheaper to buy and run a standard wall hung gas boiler and a flueless cooker the to buy a combined gas cooker/boiler.
MAIN POINTS TO CONSIDER
Pressure jet burners are always more efficient than atmospheric burners and some models have a balanced flue, which means that you don’t need to have a chimney, just an outside wall.
The rapid heat up time means you do not need to have another cooker, nor does the kitchen become unbearably hot in summer, as you only turn the cooker on when you need to.
The running cost will depend on the amount of heat you ask from it. If you already have a central heating system the running costs will be the same, or lower, as;-
- You will not have an additional gas or electricity bill for your existing cooker.
- The kitchen will be heated by the cooker in winter, saving a radiator in the kitchen (increased wall space, cheaper fuel bill).
- Pellet, Oil & Gas fired cookers can be run on a timer and are just as efficient at heating the kitchen as a boiler and radiator.
The fact that it does not have to be on 24 hrs/day gives a fuel saving of about £8-1,000/annum over a stored heat cooker running on oil @55p/litrre
Twin Burner Ranges (Eco Range, TWIN BURNER Cooker/Boiler Ranges. ESSE, Heritage, Stanley, Rayburn 400’s & 800’s, Redfyre Central Heating & now the Condensing ECO Range Cooker Co.
To make a range cooker even more in tune with today’s cooks, and to get higher boiler outputs for larger houses in a smaller unit, all the manufacturers now make a range of twin burner cookers. One burner runs the boiler and the other the oven. You get timed warmth for your kitchen, instant cooking, a cooler room in the summer and efficient burners. When the water/central heating burner is on, the cooker does not heat up.
Below is cut away diagram of a Stanley twin series cooker.
MAIN POINTS TO CONSIDER
- Boiler independent of cooker, so hot water, central heating and cooker all timed separately.
- The top oven’s temperature can be varied to suit what you are cooking, and the bottom oven’s heat is proportionate to that of the top oven. This is very different to using an Aga/stored heat range, where the oven temperatures are set, and the heat recovery is slow. Using the hot plate is easy, too, as the thermostat will ensure the plate is always hot even if you are cooking marmalade or simmering a delicious soup. The oven temperature will not be affected by using the hot plate, again unlike the Aga.
- An efficient ‘S’ plan system of heating can be used, controlling domestic hot water, central heating individually.
- The fact that it does not have to be on 24 hrs/day gives a fuel saving of about £8-1,000/annum over a stored heat cooker running on oil @55p/litre
- Gas wall hung boilers are now so cheap and efficient we have made it our policy to only sell the 100% efficient flueless gas cookers and a standard boiler. Even with oil, the cost of a single burner cooker and a new boiler will be about the same or less than a twin burner and 10% more efficient, easier to service and you can then have 3 ovens so there is little point to these cookers anymore..
- If you can't fit condensing cooker/boiler on an outside wall and want an oil cooker running up an internal chimney, consider a separate oil boiler, they can sit outside now, and the cost is little more.
Please see: Eurocal Boilers, used by Eco Range cookers
Electric Ranges (AGA, ESSE, Everhot)
ESSE make a pretty electric version of their gas and oil models for people who want the traditional range cooker look with a standard electric cooker. With 2 progressively heated halogen hot plates it mimics cooking on a range but is instantaneous. It does not provide heat to the kitchen, unless you leave it turned on low, so a radiator is still needed. For a heat storage cooker one has a choice of the electric Aga or the very clever Everhot. With the Everhot, each oven and each hot plate is individually temperature controlled. This is fairly economical and means that just one oven or half a hot plate can be left on in the hot summer, not wasting money and overheating the kitchen, but electricity is sill about 12p/kW 2-3 times the cost of gas or oil. Can worth a look if you do not have a chimney or external wall. AGA have bought out a similar cooker which they call 'Total Control', its not as good as the Everhot and cost more to run than a gas or oil cooker.
Wood fired dry ranges (ECO Range,ESSE, Broseley, Stanley,)
The drive towards bio-fuels and carbon neutrality has inspired manufacturers to redevelop earlier solid fuel ranges, now burning wood cleanly and efficiently. The Stanley cooker has been around for years because they burn peat in Ireland, having no natural coal. To burn wood a long large firebox is required, as wood has a lower calorific value than coal. ESSE’s new wood burning cookers can take 24” (600mm) logs, this saves a lot of cutting. The new ECO Range Cooker is the same, but larger and has 3 ovens.
A separate cooker is advisable for summer as the kitchen does tend to get warm – ideal in the winter, though.
The Broseley Range is excellent value for money: the Italians have been burning wood for many years as they do not have any natural gas, coal or oil.
Pellet fired Range, ECO Range Cooker Co.
A company that take ECOnomics and ECO freindly seriously at last. They have developed a 3 oven pellet cooker, with an addded induction hob. Just £2-400 a year to run. Time clock ensures you wake up to a warm kitchen with out wasting fuel. The first real alternative to the Oil AGA.strong>
Wood fired Cooker boilers ( ECO Range, ESSE, Brossley, Stanley & Rayburn)
Popular in the country where you can cut wood. Don't be fooled, you get out what you put in, so it takes a lot of wood to get full central heating. Allways look at the efficiency figures, crtical at the best of time but even more so if you are burning 3 times as much fuel. A 65% efficient boiler will burn 30% more logs than an 85% efficient one, so you would need about 6 cubic meters of wood to drive a Rayburn as opposed to 4.5 cubic meters for and ECO Range. Thats about 20 tonnes over 10 years!
Don't I get free hot water with my AGA?
One of the many misconceptions that we come across almost daily is that ‘it is a waste not to have hot water from the cooker’, or that the hot water is somehow free.
This is just not true, you cannot get ‘ought for nought’: in the AGA with a clamp on boiler, or any of the boilers with Domestic Hot Water, the burner is bigger and uses more fuel to heat the water. Furthermore, the boilers are uncontrollable and inefficient. So much so, that the work and parts to put the water on your efficient oil or gas boiler only attracts 5% VAT. The modern cooker boilers that do central heating incorporate a cooker and with the Eco Range an efficient boiler in the same beautiful housing, which not only looks good, but saves space. If your boiler is working well, or the pipe work is miles away, it is not wasteful to have a separate, dry cooker. Most range cookers also do stalwart duty as drying racks, and the heat in the kitchen is not wasted if it is keeping you warm, especially in the autumn and spring when you don’t need so much central heating.
ESSE, ECO Range, Stanley & Rayburn all make wood fired cooker boilers, can I reduce my carbon footprint by heating the whole house with one? how green is it?
Wood is a renewable fuel, and encouraged by this Government. Other countries in Europe do better, but here we have a reduced rate of 5% VAT on wood boilers over 7Kw, their installation and the installation of solar panels. Will we cut down all the trees? No, especially not in Kent and Sussex where we have abundant coppice woods. These need to be cut down/cropped every 12-16 years or the ecosystem at the base of the forest, wood anemones, bluebells, violets, etc die off. The current value to the cutter (so the woodland owner only gets a cut of this) is about £16.00 per tonne, which is a very low return on a land investment. A small house on wood heating alone would use about 7 tonnes a year so at 70 tonnes per acre, about 1.5 acres per household is required. Outside the large conurbations of London etc. we could be carbon neutral with our heating (four fifths of our energy goes on heating, the remainder on electricity for lighting, controls, music etc etc.)
The problems that arise are;-
- You must store your wood properly and plan ahead. The secret of efficient wood burning is dry wood. This means you must store at least 12-18 cu/meters of wood, half of which is handily near the point of use and dry.
- To burn wood properly you need a combustion chamber temperature of around 4-500 deg.C. This is impossible to achieve if you just stick a saddle tank around the combustion chamber. Few stoves burn properly with water boilers; the ECO Range wood cooker and the Dunsley Yorkshire stove are probably the best on the market.
- The calorific value of wood is low so you have to keep feeding it to get the output, which is not easy if you leave early for work and arrive home late.
- You need to do some work lugging and storing wood, couch potatoes and those who think their nails are more important than the planet, read no further. They say wood warms you three times – when you cut it down, when you cut it up and when you burn it.
- The house get very cold when you go away on holiday, for weekends, or if you are ill in the winter.
All these problems can be solved though; the technical and installation one by using a combined system of wood and oil or gas and, to really reduce your carbon foot print to its minimum, solar thermal panels. With this system, all the boilers feed a common heat storage cylinder and water and heating are used as required. If you do not light the wood boiler, the oil or gas boiler will automatically come on and compensates the system without you having to interfere. In simple terms the more you light the wood boiler and the more the sun shines, the more carbon you will save. With added solar panels on the roof up to 75% reduction can be achieved for just a little thought and effort on your part.
We provide a complete service, design, install and minor works (take down walls, small extensions etc.)
We specialise in framed Oak and painted kitchens and can supply framed furniture type kitchen at sensible prices
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Phone 01227 780830 to order or email;- email@example.com
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58/60 Wincheap, Canterbury, Kent. CT1 3RS.