Can anyone talk to me about an Aga?(15 Posts)
Hi, just pondering about an Aga.
I've just been looking for a new house and in the course of looking there were a few around that had Agas and despite knowing absolutely nothing about them and based purely on some form of nostalgia based romantic notions about them I was sort of hoping that the house of we'd end up buying would have one.
We're now sale agreed on a house that doesn't have an Aga but does need a new kitchen so now I'm wondering if putting in an Aga would be an idea, although having read quite a few kitchen threads on here I suspect it wouldn't be as no one talks about putting them in.
So what are the good things and bad things about Agas over the more usual cooking solutions?
Cons: more expensive to run, have to change a little the way you cook. Need to have a backup solution in the summer when you turn it off or down (we have a gas ring)
Pros: lovely in winter - makes lovely food, once you get used to eat the cooking is much easier and leaves you more time to do other stuff. Great for airing/drying clothes
Bad thing: energy inefficiency, because they are always hot. Lovely and cosy but costs a LOT to run. Because of that, most people switch them off in the summer, so you need to have another cooker of some kind.
Need a slightly different approach to cooking making more use of ovens and less of the hob; not great for stirfrying.
Good thing: lots of ovens, fact that they are always on means that you can bake immediately with no need for preheating, fact that you can dry laundry on them and lean against them on a cold day. Excellent for slowcooking.
My parents have one and I love them as a lifestyle and like cooking on them. BUT last year we moved into a house which had one and I had absolutely no doubt about taking it out. The energy inefficiency is too big a deal for me (specially with the location in the house meaning the heat would have been lost rather than spilling through to other rooms - this will of course depend). Also, now that modern electric ovens are so quick up to heat up, and ranges have lots of ovens, most of the former advantages don't really apply any more.
They made sense back in the 80s when energy was cheaper, but I don't think they do any more, hence there being very little market in secondhand ones these days.
The new ones are more energy efficient, but still cost about £15 a week to run. Apart from saving the planet, to make it worthwhile I think you would need to be cooking alot and cooking 'proper' food in the ovens, not just an evening meal for 2 of you!
I think it would also have to be sited where its excess heat warmed other rooms and I think youd have to be home during the day to appreciate this heat (and thus save on other forms of heating).
That said if you can justify it, it does cook wonderful food and I havent seen any other normal oven than cooks the same and I love the look of Agas. The nearest Ive come to it is an everhot, all things considered (and my heart WILL obey) thats what Im going to put in my new home (have an Aga now).
We have had an aga and two different rayburns in previous houses. Loved them all but the aga was without doubt the most inefficient and expensive to run. The rayburns ran heating and hot water as well as cooking and were efficient, clean and nowhere near as expensive to run as the aga. In April we moved into a house with an elderly electric oven but a lovely new boiler. So we couldn't justify a rayburn. After an enormous amount of research we too have opted for an everhot. It arrives in the week of 27th July so will be able to update on it then.
Thanks everyone for your input, I'm definitely not keen on the idea of increasing my environmental burden by having a heat source on in the house all day despite living in an area where having the heating on in summer is something that happens.
Off to google everhot now though.
Airfix - Everhot did seem the closest alternative, both in cooking ability and looks and I thought half the useage costs. Do let us know how you find it.
sorry AGA all the way here - all the others are just pretend Agas. They cook differently and are the heart of the home. I only have a 3 oven one and have nothing else to cook on and have to turn it off for 24 hours very soon to get it serviced - hate having to do that. I think if you are buying an old house then you will really appreciate it in the winter, less so if it is a newer house. They have brought out new, flexible ones, which can be time controlled if you really care about this but I doubt they will cook the same as a 'real' AGA - I could be wrong. I would also suggest getting a second hand one as they are a lot cheaper and normally come fully cleaned and reconditioned.
Love, love, love my Aga
We were a but wary, and bought this house despite it rather than because of it, but are utterly smitten.
Pros: the kitchen is always warm and welcoming; the oven is ready to go so no waiting for an oven to heat up before you can stick something in; fabulous for casseroles, baked potatoes, eggs (cooked in seconds), pancakes, dropped scones; I disagree with a pp who said it was no good for stir fries - it's excellent for that because there's always one super hot plate to cook on; great for warming/drying clothes; lovely for pets to sit in front of.
Cons: no good for baking; has to be turned off in summer as (even in our cold house) the kitchen gets too warm.
I would get one but only if you have another oven too for summer and baking. I wouldn't like to rely on just the aga. Ours goes off from June to September.
Forgot to say I have also cooked on a Rayburn and it wasn't half as good.
We have an Everhot and I love it. My parents had an Aga when I grew up so I know both, although didn't do much cooking on the Aga myself.
An Everhot is much cheaper to run, no maintenance costs as it doesn't need servicing, you can put it in eco mode overnight and it comes back on in the morning. We don't switch ours off over the summer because it doesn't give out as much heat as an Aga, but it is still lovely and cosy in the winter.
I'm on an Everhot FB group and I think all the people who have owned both Agas and Everhots say they would never go back to an Aga.
As I understand it, Aga starting making a more controllable version in response to the competition of Everhot (but I could be completely wrong on that)
And in case anyone asks I don't work for the company, I just think it's a great cooker if you want that type of thing.
Another Everhot owner here. I don't turn mine off in the summer either but turn down the controls if I'm.going on holiday. Yes I think you can now control an Aga the same way - they have copied Everhot. And I've never had mine serviced in the 10 years I've had it. It cooks the same as an Aga also - massive ovens. And the good thing is it's not built in so you can take it with you when you move, whereas I.think kitchens tend to be built around Agas. They come in really nice colours too!
We just have a electric aga, and I absolutely love it.. wouldn't be without one and we don't use a second cooker at all. It works on economy 7, so charges at night, and discharges during the day. Our electricity bill for the year is £100 a month, for a very old (read draughty) 16th C cottage and we we use very little oil for heating spring to oct.. So It's not as expensive as you think it might be.
I cannot stand my aga - it is a daily pain in the bum. As well as being expensive and utterly unenvironmentally sound, it is a rubbish cooker. Not sensitive enough and too little control. Despite all the ovens you can't cook two things at the same temperature. The cooler ring isn't cool enough. The hot ring isn't hot enough. And it heats the kitchen in winter and summer. Not hot enough in winter, too warm in summer.
And it is a pain to clean.
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