Consumer Alert: Pro performance for less

(National/Consumer Reports) August 21, 2006 - Professional ranges are the stars in appliance showrooms these days. They look great, but the prices are sky high. Are these ranges really worth thousands more than a regular range?

To find out, Consumer Reports pitted a $5,000 professional range against a regular range that costs a mere $800.  Both are made by GE.

To compare the two ranges, testers cooked a wide variety of foods, including pan-seared rib-eye steaks. This assesses how evenly the cook tops can sear.

Testers also whipped up sauces, to assess how well the cook tops perform at low heats, and how evenly they cook the sauces.

And to evaluate how quickly and evenly the ovens perform, testers roasted chickens.

When all the tests results were tallied, it turns out the results from both ranges were pretty impressive.  Both chickens were moist and juicy, while the steaks were tender with a nice crust.

And the sauces were smooth and evenly heated.

Mark Connelly with Consumer Reports said, "Any differences we saw between the ranges were minimal, and certainly not worth paying $4,200 more for."

So Consumer Reports says you can get a very good range for under a thousand dollars.

However, if only a professional range will do, you may get good results, but you better have money to burn.

The regular range in Consumer Reports' tests is the GE model number JGBP35WEJ.  It rated very good overall, and costs just $800.

Posted 1:05pm by Bryce Mursch

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