Gaggenau vs. Viking vs. Thermador 36 Inch Gas Cooktops (Reviews/Ratings/Prices)

Steve Sheinkopf  |  October 23, 2014  |  3 Min. Read

Thermador  |  Gas Cooktops  |  Viking  |  Gaggenau

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With the rise of technology, kitchens have become more than just food preparation and preservation. You are looking for speed, efficiency, safety, as well as the design of kitchen appliances.

When considering these features in cooktop brands, these three brands: Gaggenau, Viking and Wolf offer decent technology and design. However, even in the same category, they are unequal.

Rangetops vs. Cooktops

rangetops vs cooktops

Many people transpose the two terms. Quite simply, rangetops have the controls on the front, a more commercial look and have grill and griddle options. The sizes tend to be bigger. Cooktops have the controls on the top.

Rangetops at one time had much greater output. They still are faster, but that gap has narrowed substantially. Most cooktops have at least one burner equal or more powerful than a rangetop as you will see in this post.

Gaggenau

Gaggenau is produced in Germany and provides a high end, hi-tech, and Bang & Olufsen modern design. It is a solid cooktop with durable brass burners. Gaggenau is one of the least serviced brands due to this attention to detail and quality components.

Their output is a 17k output burner in the center as well as two more high output 13,600k burners with a simmer down to 300 BTU on the center burners and 500 on all others. So Gaggenau has good output and great simmer capability.

Their warranty is the best in the appliance industry at up to 7 years in a package.

Gaggenau VG295214CA - $2,899

Viking

Viking is now owned by Middleby, a commercial company based in Ohio. We no longer sell Viking products. I love the name, but there have been residual service issues with the brand. You need to investigate and develop a level of comfort before considering. The cooktop is decent.

Viking offers gas cooktops that can be used with both natural gas and propane gas. They have a straight or VGC series and the curved or RVGC series. They also offer automatic ignition, permanently sealed burners, Scratch Safe design and various burners BTU in a cook top. The burners vary between 9,100 btu to a whopping 18,000 btu for a total of 66,000 BTU. The curved design allows pots to slide over the iron surface from burner to burner without limitations.

Viking VGC5366BSS  - $2,199

Thermador

Thermador, like Gaggenau, is a division of BSH, but is manufactured in America. It is very different with a distinct star burner design, which a perimeter length exceeding round burners of the same size by 56%.

This design also allows the stove burners to deliver superior flame that allows heat to spread evenly, faster and wider across all pan sizes. Thermador cooktops also have burners of up to 18,000 BTU and a combined thermal unit of 60,000 BTU. The breakdown is one center 18k, two 12k, and two 9k btu burners.

They also feature 2 burners that provide the widest variety of temperature control of any simmer system available, cycling the burner on and off to as low as 100 degrees. The simmer on Thermador is intermittent whereas they stay constant at higher temperatures.

Thermador is also the most reliable of all the premium brands at under 15% service within the first year. You also have great package deals with free dishwashers and hoods with other Thermador purchases.

Thermador SGSX365FS - $1,899

Gaggenau vs. Viking vs. Thermador Gas Cooktops

I like all three. Gaggenau is the most solidly constructed and reliable. You either love or hate its modern style, but th price is a tad high at double the others even with the way better warranty.

Viking is powerful and a good looking top. You have to Google the brand to see if they improved. I still like the name and specs.

Thermador has a nice mix of reliability, output and simmer. I may like this the best.

Additional Resources

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Steve Sheinkopf

Steve is the third-generation CEO of Yale and a lifelong Bostonian. He currently resides in Boston, one mile from where he was born. Despite being one of the worst goalies of all time, he is a huge hockey fan of college hockey and the Boston Bruins. The love of his life is his daughter Sophie.

Steve has also been featured in numerous publications such as the New York Times, Consumer Reports, The Boston Globe, Bloomberg Radio, the New York Post, The Wall Street Journal, and Entrepreneur, for his knowledge of how to buy appliances and appliance repair.

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