Frigidaire FPIF3093LF 30-Inch Induction Range Review
It's not perfect, but this Frigidaire makes induction affordable without too many sacrifices. That just might help it catch on in the US.
Though induction ranges are common in Europe and Asia, their high prices have kept them out of most American homes, despite the advantages in safety, power, and control. Fortunately, we've been seeing induction prices slowly fall. The $2,025 MSRP Frigidaire FPIF3093LF may have just what it takes to give induction a foothold in the US. Specifically, a sale price that frequently hits $1,600. It's not perfect, but we're pleased with Frigidaire's contribution the induction invasion.
Design & Usability
The Toyota Camry of ranges.
The Frigidaire FPIF3093LF plays it safe with a vanilla mid-level range design. Instead of moving the rangetop controls to a more convenient location, Frigidaire has left the buttons (alas, no knobs) on the backsplash, so be careful when reaching over the stove. For the oven, Frigidaire unfortunately has joined Samsung in including gourmand-insulting buttons for "pizza" and "chicken nuggets" on the control panel.
The 6.0 cubic foot self-cleaning oven has four racks, rather than the typical two or three. It's important to note that it's much easier to clean an induction rangetop than anything else. It's a flat surface like electric, but it doesn't get hot itself—only the pan gets hot—so food doesn't get baked on.
The same induction performance we know and love.
Induction rangetops consistently deliver stellar performance, so it's no surprise we recorded near-perfect boiling, simmering, and searing results in our tests. Of course, the downside to all induction cooktops is that you need to make sure a magnet sticks to all of your pots. If that's not the case, you just might find that easier cleanup, better performance, and a clean look are worth updating your cookware.
Oven, Broiler, & Convection
At this price, a middling oven is acceptable.
While it's certainly not as impressive as the rangetop, we're not counting out this range just because of its oven. We've seen ranges with marvelous induction rangetops fail completely in the oven department, so we welcome the Frigidaire FPIF3093LF's middling performance. The convection and conventional 350°F settings do alright in averaging the proper temperature, but the temperature fluctuation was greater than 20ºF too hot or too cold — the standard we like to see for evenness. Variation wasn't that far from the ideal, but it wasn't as good as it could be.
We'll give this range a nod, but you might do well to wait for a sale.
Even waiting for a sale, there aren't that many induction ranges to choose from under $2,000. So when a decent one comes along, we're happy about it. This one's MSRP is $2,049, but we found it on sale regularly for under $1,700, which makes it one of the most affordable induction ranges on the market.
The only major weakness was the oven temperature variance, which we'd liked to have been reduced. It's only a fatal flaw for the most serious bakers, but the average user likely won't notice, especially in the face of the rangetop and price. However, if you can hold on a bit longer, it might be worth waiting, since this is a growing market here in the U.S. The selection can only get bigger, and the prices can only fall.
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