Choosing new appliances for your kitchen can be overwhelming because there are just so many choices. As you scroll through endless Pinterest boards and websites, you may fall in love with a special range oven or with a look that includes a wall oven. But which type of cooking appliances are right for your home? With a little help from Modernize, you can effectively brainstorm to consider your kitchen space, budget, and lifestyle—and choose between a stand alone vs. wall oven for your home.
What is a Stand Alone Oven?
A stand alone oven is also known as a freestanding oven. This is a more traditional type of oven for modern kitchens, standing on four legs and built into the kitchen area – often surrounded by counterspace and cabinets, but they can also stand alone. Stand alone ovens are also often range ovens, which means they have a built-in stovetop on top in addition to the oven underneath. For this reason, they are multi-functional and convenient for homeowners.
Keep in mind that that they are usually larger in size than wall ovens, and take up more room in your kitchen. However, ovens are often a focal point in the kitchen, so you may not mind reserving this space for your stand alone oven.
What is a Wall Oven?
A wall oven is built-in to a kitchen’s cabinetry and can be positioned at any height that is ideal for the homeowner. While they are typically smaller than stand alone ovens and range ovens, many homeowners prefer wall ovens because they are more minimalistic and blend seamlessly into the kitchen design. Additionally, wall ovens can be great “space saving” solutions for smaller kitchens.
One downside to wall ovens is that they are often not range ovens – meaning, they do not include a stovetop. Some homeowners that use wall ovens choose to install a stovetop separately into their kitchen.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Stand Alone vs. Wall Oven
The first thing to consider when deciding between a stand alone vs. wall oven is the size of your kitchen layout.
A standalone range oven is typically 30 inches wide, while a wall oven will be between 24-30 inches wide. However, keep in mind that when adding a cooktop in addition to a wall oven (see below), it may take up as much as 57 inches of space.
The added benefit of having the space for a wall oven is the storage that you gain from the cabinets above and below the wall oven, and the cabinets beneath the cooktop. If your space is lacking in size, a stand alone range oven will meet your needs for nearly half the space that the wall oven and cooktop combo would require.
In addition to the space required for the ovens, it’s important to know that there needs to be landing space on both sides of a cooking surface. NKBA guidelines recommend a minimum of 12 inches on one side of a cooking surface and 15 inches on the other side. If you add a wall oven to your plan, there needs to be an additional 15 inches of landing space. In other words, there needs to be open countertop to safely place those hot pans that you are taking out of the oven.
Stand alone oven vs. wall oven costs
There is a substantial difference in price depending on the type of oven you choose. A stand alone range oven is the most economical choice. Stand alone ovens start at about $300, and you only need to buy one cooking appliance. Of course, there are other high-tech or fancy stand alone ovens that are priced in the thousands if your budget allows it and you simply prefer to have a luxury range oven.
If you prefer a wall oven with a separate cooktop, you must factor in the price of two appliances. Wall ovens with a separate cooktop start at a combined minimum of about $1300. That cost can easily skyrocket as you add different features, such as a convection oven, a double oven, or a premium stainless steel finish. Additionally, you will need to consider the cost of a tall oven cabinet and a cooktop cabinet, which will be determined by the door style, wood species, and construction of the cabinets.
Also remember to factor in installation costs. An electric range oven just needs to be plugged in. A gas range oven will involve a little more know-how, especially if a gas line is not already in place.
Often times, a microwave range hood is placed over a stand alone oven. The cost of installing that microwave to the cabinet above should be considered. If you go with a wall oven and separate cooktop, make sure to budget for the installation of both.
Keep in mind that your kitchen remodeler will likely charge an added fee to template, cut, and install the cooktop. With so many variables involved, sometimes the price is the bottom line when deciding on an oven.
If you have determined that you have the space and budget for either a standalone or wall oven/cooktop combo and you’re still not sure which to choose, consider your lifestyle. Do you entertain often? Does your family gather in your home for holiday meals that require a lot of dishes to be prepared at one time?
If there is more than one cook in the kitchen, it is nice to have one person manning the cooktop area, while another person is working on the landing space beside the wall oven. Two people can work on meal preparation in their own space without worrying about tripping over one another.
Other lifestyle considerations include your height and health. If you are tall or have back or joint issues, it may be inconvenient or even painful to have to bend down to remove sometimes heavy pans from a stand alone oven. A wall oven allows an easier transition from the oven to the countertop.
If you prefer to dine out or you just don’t cook for large gatherings often, a free-standing range oven may be the best choice for you. It is certainly beneficial to have more than two feet of counter space, which you would lose to a wall oven cabinet. This extra space can also be used as a desk area, coffee station, wine fridge, etc. Not to mention, stand alone range ovens are often more affordable.
Once you have determined your space, budget, and lifestyle, you can rest assured that you have all of the information you need to decide between a stand alone vs. wall oven. If you are ready to get valuable advice from a professional, you can use Modernize to connect with kitchen remodeling professionals in your area.