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Burned another dinner on my stylish GE Profile cooktop

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
Spent $1,000 foir the great-looking GE Profile smooth glass cook-top. After five years of practice, my wife and I are absolutely unable to gauge what temperature we will be getting on any particular setting, except that most of them seem to wind up at "incinerate."

We finally had a GE serviceman come out and check it and, after about 45 minutes, running through all the settings and controls, he said "it's working just like it's supposed to." He only charged us the service-call minimum, not for the time he spent, and seemed embarassed about the whole thing.

Can anybody give me some pointers or experience in using this horrible appliance?

It was designed into my granite counter and custom cabinets, and I can't have gas in my condo. I've looked at induction units, but we will have replace
that part of the counter and the cabinet below to fit one of those into the kitchen.

Any ideas? :cry:
travelling gourmand
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travelling gourmand
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post #2 of 21
Welcome to the wonderful world of GE appliances! I will never buy another GE appliance - everything from GE, stove, frigs, dishwasher, microwave, waher, dryer and undercounter radio/cd player have had or are having problems. GE customer service is terrible.
post #3 of 21
So what kind of pan do you have and what did you cook?
post #4 of 21
I've never understood the appeal of those glass cooktops from any maker.

And all that I've cooked on I've disliked.

Induction is appealing in a lot of ways, but it has cookware limitations that might cause other issues for you.

Phil
post #5 of 21
MikeLM,
I feel your pain. We'd have to run a new line and use expensive propane to get gas out here. So after 1 1/2 years with a GE Profile electric, we've found almost everything gets sauteed at about "2." If we want to bring something up to a simmer, we start around "4" and then watch to see if it needs to go back down to "2." We boil water for pasta at the highest setting and forget about all those other numbers inbetween. And, other than boiling pasta, we NEVER EVER walk away from anything on the stove top for very long.
Emily

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Emily

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post #6 of 21
Mike, you might try preheating your pan on one burner then transfering it to a different one, at a lower temp. for actual cooking. Watching your pan and lifting it off the burner as needed to cool, and then lowering burner setting sometimes works. What kind of pans are you using? Are you having trouble with all recipes? Are you able to cook well using the same pans on a different electric cook top? I can understand the investment you have in your current kitchen, that's why we have a great variety of cookware some are only used for specific things , and specific methods. With a bit more info perhaps I can give you some more useful ideas. Using one of these glorified hot plates one can produce good food, but it's seldom fun. Good Luck.
post #7 of 21
OK, I'll be the dissenting opinion here...

I have a GE Spectra glass-top stove, and I LOVE it. I would never go back to gas. It's about 10 years old, and when I built a new house last year, I insisted on moving this old stove with me. I plan on using the oven door as my tombstone--the closest I can get to taking it with me. :bounce:

I have found that using heavy pans and a low setting help to keep the heat at an even level. I have some old Calphalon hard-anodized pans that weigh a ton, and also enameled cast iron, and I never burn things with these (except if I just do something stupid). I've been less happy with stainless steel, and you can forget about cheap pans.

I do think there is a huge difference across brands of glass-top stoves. I bought a Kenmore for our cabin last year (very limited choices for a 24" stove), and it's really difficult to keep the heat at a consistent level with either the glass-top or oven.
post #8 of 21
I had to cook on one of those for Christmas (my friends don't have gas). I could not find a temperature setting that was what I wanted. I would spring for the propane(a 100 lb cylinder would be plenty big) and stick in a gas cooktop.
post #9 of 21
Thread Starter 
Thanks to all for the sympathy and suggestions.

As for pans, we have an eclectic selection- a couple All-Clads, a Calphalon or two, several Magnalite Professional Stainless - a less-expensive version of All-Clad - two or three Le Creusets, and some cast iron. Also a couple of light non-stick T-Fal skillets.

None of them avoid the uncontrollable-heat problem.

We learned long ago that, to switch to lower heat during cooking, there was no choice but to move to a new, unheated burner and hope it didn't get too hot, itself. My son the engineer refers to this problem as "thermal inertia."

Doesn't make us feel any better. :mad:

MaryB suggested:
" I would spring for the propane(a 100 lb cylinder would be plenty big) and stick in a gas cooktop. "

In a house, that would make good sense, and I'd consider it - but God knows what the condo association would say and do, let alone the Fire Department! :eek:

Thanks again, and Merry Christmas to all!

Mike
travelling gourmand
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travelling gourmand
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post #10 of 21
can you get one of those infrared temp guns?
post #11 of 21
Mike,

I'm sure you already explored this option but I gotta ask.... what type of heat the condo uses? The reason being is that if you have gas heat (hard to believe a condo in Chicago would use a heat pump or electric to heat) then you have the availability right there. The Gas Co. (or a plumber) could tell you if a line can be added or tapped into for the kitchen.

Having been through both the gas and electric routes for coking I'd have to say that gas is the way to go. But if there is absolutely no affordable way (reasonable too) to do the gas line maybe an induction top like the new Electrolux might just be in order

Never owned a GE smooth top electric so I can't say what to do but..... having had a Maytag and Kitchen Aid, the Maytag was close to 7 years ago and the Kitchen aid was as recently as two years ago, I'd say the range is not working properly. My experiences with GE (Monogram included) would have to guess that the Tech called the service help line and got no-where with them and this is why nothing was wrong. If the appliannce was newer I'd say apply a little more squeek to the wheel and the grease would follow. Unfortunately if the appliance is 5 years old then it's almost lived it's full life and maybe just needs to be replaced.

As an observation......GE ain't what it once was. In the last 5 years (2 houses worth mind you) we have gone through warranty replacement of a Monogram cook-top (36" gas with grill and 4 burners), 2 Monogram Dishwashers plus a Monogram Refrigerator at our previous house and in the second and current house it's been a GE Profile Refrigerator (1 year old and the same unit as the Monogram only less expensive unfortunately this one cost us big-time because it died and was full of food), a Profile oven that has needed 2 circuit boards and a control panel in less than 2 years and an Advantium oven that has needed a new fan motor for the Convenction and speed cook operation in the same time frame.

Makes me wonder if we should taken out the bigger loan to get the Wolf and Sub-Zero.:look: And companies wonder why consumer confidence is at historical lows. By the way....just remember to say.....Extended warranty.
post #12 of 21
Thread Starter 
Joe,
Thanks for the reply. Your comment that

Unfortunately if the appliance is 5 years old then it's almost lived it's full life and maybe just needs to be replaced.

Does not give me much hope because all the appliances are coming up on five years. I've had a lot of appliances over a lot of years, and a five-year life is certainly not what I have experienced.

Are we spiraled down to manufacturing everything like GM did under Roger Smith? (I'm a veteran of the R Smith era, with 4 cars between 1975 and 1988, each worse than the last. I'm a Toyota guy since then, and all my children stick to Honda.) THEY'RE ALL AMERICAN CARS! I don't feel very sorry for either the Big Three or for the UAW, but it looks like they're all going to get a LOT of my money.

RPM suggested I get an IR thermometer-gun. I spent $65 for one about a month after I started trying to use the GE smoothtop. It doesn't do me a damm bit of good - the stove careens off to its own temperature as it wishes, and I still can't do much about it. :(

Mike
travelling gourmand
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travelling gourmand
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post #13 of 21
I agree, an old equipment should be replaced.. It's 5 year old, if it's just cookware it's okay but if it's equipment and not working well you should replace it of course.
post #14 of 21
Thread Starter 
I am just apalled at these comments that

"if it's five years old it's probably worn out and should be replaced."

I hope that American manufacturers do a little better than that, though they do from time to time produce lemons. (Actually, I've had General Motors cars to which that applied, but I dropped them around 1992, and went with Toyota - built in America. My three kids go with Hondas - also US-built.)

My other appl;iances are plugging along just fine, as is the crappy cooktop. :mad: We paid for a GE service call and, after 45 minutes of testing, the tech said "it's working just like it's supposed to." He only charged us the basic service-call charge - not for his time. He seemed embarassed.

I can't replace it without redoing my granite countertop and the custom cabinets below the cooktop, so I'm stuck.

Mike
travelling gourmand
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travelling gourmand
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post #15 of 21
That's what I was going to say, the infrared kind.

I have an electric stove at my condo, and at my girl friend's condo, and they are definately hard to get used to, it just takes practice, and I usually start out a little lower then I think I will need and then raise it if needed.
post #16 of 21
They should definatley last more than five years, my appliance repairman said most appliances will need at least on repair by the time they are 5 years old, but they should definatley last more than that. Especially a stove top where their is not much mechanical with it.

Are they able to replace just the heating elements? And then maybe the circuit board that controls those?
post #17 of 21
Has anyone used a double cast iron grill on a glass top? Can it be done?

I have a glass top..Not real impressed with it. Harder to keep clean.
post #18 of 21
Those are usually rimmed and won't make direct contact with the glass. Meaning terrible heating. And cast iron is likely to scratch up the glass top as well.

Phil
post #19 of 21
That is exactly what I was thinking...As where burners are raised above the top.
post #20 of 21
Thread Starter 
Yesterday I was toasting sandwiches on the good ol' Profile cooktop and set the burner to "2" - the third lowest setting of 11.

My infra-red thermometer (which I purchased for $65 or so in a vain effort to figure out what was happening on the cooktop) registered 475 degrees in the aluminum non-stick flat pan.

I'm going to compare that with the temperature on my Cuisinart Griddler pannini press next time i use it.

Mike
travelling gourmand
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travelling gourmand
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post #21 of 21
That's defective. No way is 475F "2".
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