Buyer’s Guide: Gas Ranges

So you’ve got the restaurant purchased, named, and you’re now ready to stock your kitchen with all of the fun equipment you need to make those perfect meals like your favorite TV chefs. When you’re getting ready to put your kitchen together, there is one piece of equipment that virtually every commercial kitchen has: a range. Ranges can be powered be either gas or electricity, but this post will be all about gas ranges, but regardless of how the heat is created, there are several different elements to consider.

First would be the issue of size. You have to consider how large of a space you have in your kitchen for the range and where the gas valve is located. Ranges can vary in sizes, like any other equipment, so make sure you have the space. Also consider how many burners you’ll need. We’ve had ranges with as many as 10 burners, but not every restaurant needs 10 burners.

Next to consider is the type of gas needed and BTU’s. Most gas ranges use natural gas since it’s the most common gas type. Some do, however, run on propane, but those are typically used for portable operations since you need your own tank. BTU’s (or British Thermal Units…bet you didn’t know that…I didn’t know until I looked it up) is how the amount of heat put out is measured. Ranges are rated by how high or low the BTU output is. Higher BTU ranges will heat faster and have quicker heat recovery times, but will use more energy. Lower BTU ranges will be slower in both heating time and heat recovery, but will heat more efficiently.

Some ranges even have add-on options, and we occasionally get those combo units in our warehouse (keep an eye out for those; they’re sweet!). One option is a griddle, or large, flat metal plate that distributes heat evenly through the whole surface. The griddle can be controlled through a manual method or a thermostatic method. Another option is a charbroiler, which can broil poultry, seafood, and meat easily.

While those options are…well…optional, there are some accessories that you will need for your gas range no matter what. Casters (a fancy term for heavy-duty wheels) are necessary to move the range easily, whether it’s when the unit is being moved into the kitchen, or when you need to move it to clean behind it. You also need to make sure you have a gas hose connector kit so you can connect your range to your gas source with a hose.

Oh, and here’s one more important fact: if your kitchen is above 2,000 feet in elevation, you might need the gas valves on your range adjusted. I don’t know how many of our friends in Florida will see this as an issue, but it’s good to know.

Once you’ve covered all of these issues, then you can give us a call so you can find the right gas range for you.

One Fat Frog Restaurant Equipment

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