Sure, new tech is cool, but it's the uniform cooking and quick preheat we really love.
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We tested the LG LDG4315ST extensively in our labs, recording everything from preheat times to rangetop temperatures. Our findings were mixed, with this range exceeding expectations in some areas and underperforming in others.
Manufacturers add bits and pieces of new tech to ovens all the time, but it’s been awhile since we’ve seen such a fundamental change as LG's new ProBake system.
Available on all LG gas ovens—including the LG LDG4315ST double-oven gas range (MSRP $1,899), ProBake moves the heating element from its typical location at the bottom of the cavity onto the rear oven wall. A fan moves the hot air throughout the oven—a design choice meant to alleviate the burnt bottoms so commonly caused by traditional heating elements. It’s a beautiful concept, but does it work?
Sort of. This LG may do things a little differently, but it can’t always bake more evenly than some of other ovens we’ve tested—including the single-oven, ProBake-equipped LG LRG4115ST we tested earlier this year. Brisk preheat times were indeed impressive, as were the rangetop burners and convection baking setting.
As with many double oven ranges, the smaller oven is the weak link, but the extra space could be helpful around the holidays. It's not a paradigm-breaking product, but the LG LDG4315ST will serve you very well once you know how to master its features.
In our oven testing, we bake a sheet of cookies and then two cakes side by side. When the food is ready, we use a photospectrometer to measure any variation in doneness that may indicate temperature regulation issues in the cavity.
Unfortunately, neither oven treated our cakes or cookies particularly well when we used standard bake settings. The lower oven, equipped with ProBake, turned out two cakes that were browned differently depending on their location in the cavity. Each individual cookie was evenly browned, but results varied across the sheet.
The upper oven was much worse. Cakes were completely varied in browning, and cookies weren’t much better.
The lower oven was much improved by the use of the convection setting, but there’s no saving the upper oven, which lacks convection. The lower oven earned itself near-perfect scores when we tried baking cakes and cookies with convection, so make sure to use this setting if you decide to take this range home.
Preheats were astoundingly fast in the lower oven, which took just 4 minutes 18 seconds to preheat for standard baking, and 5 minutes 34 seconds for convection. By contrast, the upper oven, which should’ve preheated more quickly due to its small size, took more than 8 minutes to finish preheating.
While this 6.9 cubic-foot LG has the appearance of an ordinary double oven range, looks can be deceiving. Yes, that’s a stainless steel finish covering the front of the range, but inside, this oven is anything but ordinary.
The rangetop features continuous, cast-iron grates, five gas burners (including a center oval burner), and convenient removable griddle. Below an angled panel with rangetop control knobs, the 2.6 cubic-foot upper oven cavity has a cobalt blue interior. The 4.3 cubic-foot lower oven, however, houses LG’s new ProBake system.
The upper oven may offer Bake, Broil, Delay Bake, Warm, and Pizza settings, but the lower oven takes things to another level. The heating element is located at the rear of the cavity, rather than its standard location at the bottom. The element works with a fan, which circulates heat even when you’re not using the convection setting for what LG claims is improved temperature regulation.
Settings in the lower oven include Bake, Convection Bake, Convection Roast, Multi-Rack Convection, Delay Bake, Proof, Warm, and Pizza. Both ovens can be put to use with a glass touch control panel located on the backsplash. Each is equipped with LG’s EasyClean cycle, which combines a special coating with a brief steam clean cycle for fast results. A traditional pyrolytic self-clean cycle is also available.
Even though ProBake is the main event here, the LDG4315ST's best feature is actually its rangetop.
Maximum temperatures were high for a gas range: Out of 5 gas burners, the front two burners both peaked at temperatures above 400°F. The center oval burner and left rear burner were just shy of 400°F, while only the right rear burner failed to climb above 300°F.
Minimum temperatures were even more impressive. The right rear burner may have flunked the high temperature test, but its lowest temperature was a mild 117°F—perfect for warming soup. The left rear burner was almost as temperate, and the front burners both bottomed out just below 150°F. Only the center burner was unable to dip to ideal simmering temperatures.
Boil times were pretty darn speedy. LG markets its right front burner as a quick boiler, and for good reason—it was able to boil six cups of water in less than four minutes. (Be careful if you're trying to perform a more delicate task.) The left rear burner took just a few minutes more—still pretty good—while the center and left rear burners took closer to ten. Just take care not to boil on the right rear burner, which will keep you waiting for far too long.
The rangetop made it through most of our tests with flying colors. You’ll want to save the two front burners for high-heat cooking and boiling, which both scored particularly well. The right front burner maxes out at 427°F and takes just 3 minutes 42 seconds to boil 6 cups of water. The left front burner is almost as hot, hitting a maximum temperature of 414°F and boiling in 5 minutes 43 seconds. Both are pretty good at dipping to low temperatures as well, reaching their minimum temperatures at 143°F and 146°F, respectively.
However, the rear of the rangetop should be the most effective at simmering and other low-heat tasks. The right rear burner has a minimum temperature of 117°F, the lowest on the rangetop—but unfortunately that’s the only thing it does well, with a maximum temperature below 300°F and an unreasonably long boiling time. At least plenty of this rangetop’s burners are better at multitasking, for example the left rear burner gets almost as mild at 138°F, climbs to almost 400°F at its hottest, and boils in 9 minutes 50 seconds. Not bad.
The oval center burner can’t drop below 150°F, but otherwise scored similarly to the left rear burner.
We’ve tested a whole lot of ovens, and those that won't darken the bottom of your baked goods are rare indeed. After all, the bottom of the oven is typically where the heating element is located.
Well, here’s the good news: We baked cakes and cookies in the LDG4315ST’s lower oven, where ProBake relocates the heating element from the bottom of the lower oven to the rear, and there was nigh a burnt cookie bottom to be found. Preheat times in the bottom cavity were speedy, at just over 4 minutes for standard bake and under 6 for convection.
The ProBake system doesn’t seem to offer much else that a regular oven wouldn't. We baked two cakes in the bottom cavity using the standard bake setting, and found doneness varied significantly throughout. Cookies fared a lot better, but there was still room for improvement.
If you buy this oven, we recommend using the convection mode. We found that cookies baked with convection in the bottom oven were perfectly even. Cakes were not, but were much improved from the regular bake setting.
As far as the smaller upper oven goes, consider it an optional feature only when the lower is already in use and your guests are demanding their food posthaste. Cakes were totally uneven, and cookies were barely better. But given what we've seen in other double ovens, this is par for the course.
According to LG, should the LDG4315ST fail due to defects of material or workmanship during one year from the date of purchase, LG will offer repairs or replacements. If LG does replace the product or a part during the original warranty period, that product or part is under warranty until the end of the original warranty period, or 90 days, whichever is greater.
The overall results put the LG LDG4315ST into our list of top performers because it does very well at certain tasks: fast boiling, low simmer, and excellent bake performance, specifically when in the right part of the oven (the lower oven) and in the right mode (convection mode). So to that end, well done, LG.
But don’t buy this oven just for the ProBake. The technology is interesting but underwhelming in and of itself. It's also pricey. If you see a big sale, it's definitely worth considering. However, you can get near the same performance on models that cost a lot less.