Induction or ceran

For a long time, Ceran was regarded as the absolute standard for hotplates. But now it is increasingly being replaced by induction. Many consumers who have to buy new cooktops now face the question of where the difference between induction and ceramic is. Below we compare both technologies for hotplates.

Ceran is actually a brand name and not a technique

Designating Ceran as a technology is actually wrong. Rather, Ceran is a protected brand name of Schott AG from Frankfurt. This company was the driving force behind the development of hotplates in the 1970s, the principle of which had long been known in the USA, but which also needed much improvement.

History of the glass ceramic hob (halogen or infrared)

Schott countered that the company already produced glass-ceramics for the aerospace industry. This should serve as a visible plate of the hob. For this purpose, a cooking system was developed, which uses the halogen technology. A halogen lamp is heated so much in particular in the infrared range that it can be cooked with it. The heat is transferred to the glass ceramic and heats the pot.

Leading since the 90s

With the new infrared technology, the temperature was much better to dose, also significantly reduced the response time from switching on to heating. One of the main advantages right from the start: the smooth glass ceramic field can be cleaned easily and quickly. The technology has been around for about 40 years and has slowly become the leading hob technology in the 1980s and 90s.

Sophisticated and robust technology of ceramic fields

This has brought a new advantage: the ceramic fields are now so mature that repairs to it are rather rare (with proper operation). Compared to the classic electric plate, it offers numerous advantages:

  • less energy consumption
  • more controlled cooking
  • better to clean surface
  • because of the red lamp, a hot plate is immediately signaled
  • Ceran hobs can also be installed and connected independently without an oven

Induction hobs are now on the rise

At the end of the 1990s and increasingly in the first decade of the new millennium, the induction hob slowly found its way into the kitchen. In 2004, around 30,000 induction hobs were sold, compared to 80,000 in 2005. Thus, the prices went down further and further. But although the technology is actually very old and can be found in many applications, many consumers know little about it.

The historical development of induction

To better understand the history of the induction hob, a quick question: what do a speed sensor, a tape recorder, a transformer, an alternator, and many other products have in common with an induction hob? At first glance, little. In fact, all these products work on the principle of induction.

Discovered in 1831

We wanted to show where the technology has been used for a long time, because many people think that the electromagnetic fields are dangerous. In reality, this technique has been an integral part of our everyday lives for many decades. The induction and the law of induction were even discovered in 1831.

Old technology, completely reinterpreted

There are also building plans from the 19th century that describe an induction cooker. AEG has taken up the principle even after the war. The product testers were enthusiastic, but the development of the technical components was simply not progressive enough. After all, what good is a huge and almost invaluable device?

Operating principle induction

Meanwhile, the development of electronics but also the induction principle has made much easier to implement. This generates electromagnetic vortices. When these hit a metal, it heats it up. So it is no longer required radiating heat source. The heat is generated in the cookware itself.

Requirements when cooking

Basically all conductive metals are usable, but ferromagnetic metals concentrate the energy and thus are very efficient. Therefore, special cooking pots are needed. Either the aluminum pots are with a ferromagnetic base plate or products made entirely of ferromagnetic metals.

Pros and cons of induction cooking

If the surface of the pot is not absolutely flat, the pot may begin to vibrate during induction. Therefore, even old pots that are magnetic, rather unsuitable. The advantages of induction cooking are obvious:

  • the food is heated very quickly and precisely
  • the glass ceramic does not heat up directly (if only then through the radiating heat of a pot)
  • it can not burn anything
  • As a result, induction hobs are easy to clean
  • the conversion efficiency from electricity to heat is almost 100 percent
  • This results in greater energy loss (power plant) and transport (power grid)
  • as a result energy savings compared to a conventional glass ceramic hob of up to 30 percent
  • due to the fast effect up to 50 percent time savings

Double time savings

It is the time saving that is enormous. Because it is not limited to the cooking time. Also, cleaning the induction hob is much easier, because nothing can burn.

The high purchase price equalizes the energy savings

On the other hand, there are also disadvantages. So the most obvious is the twice as high purchase price compared to a conventional ceramic hob. In addition, the technology is not yet mature, so that damage to the complex electronics can occur after a few years, which then equalized the energy savings completely (very high repair costs).

The safest way to cook with children

But especially in households with children, it is the safest way to cook. Even if the little ones turn on the stove once - as long as there is no pot on the hob, nothing happens. But the first induction hobs had other problems. The induction creates a leakage current. This is not dangerous, but at least comes up to 200 volts.

Health aspects of induction

Who now cooks a lot and touches his pots, would regularly derive the current through his body, which could lead to unpredictable health consequences. Therefore, modern glass ceramics are coated with graphite. This graphite surface is then grounded.


But also the risk of electromagnetic fields was underestimated. Especially when a non-ferromagnetic pot is used, the magnetic fields scatter. Then they could quickly adjust a pacemaker. Meanwhile, however, this problem is solved and modern hobs are shielded accordingly. Under "Induction hob and health" we will discuss it in more detail.

Tips & Tricks

Whether it should be an induction hob or a conventional ceramic hob, is in principle a matter of personal preference - which benefits outweigh for whom. Incidentally, the installation of an induction hob shows no difference to that of a ceramic hob.

Video Board: How to use SCHOTT CERAN induction