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What Are Apartment-Sized Stoves? | We Explain!

What Are Apartment-Sized Stoves? | We Explain!

Stoves come in all sizes, and some of the smallest kinds are apartment size stoves. Here’s everything you need to know about this kitchen appliance. 

What Are Apartment-Size Stoves?

An apartment size stove is a great kitchen appliance for small homes where space is tight. There are several characteristics that distinguish these stoves from standard stoves:

  • Dimensions
  • Oven size
  • Weight

Characteristics of Apartment-Size Stoves

Apartment size stove next to a small washing machine

Madhourse/Shutterstock

Here are some important characteristics and specs of apartment size stoves. 

Size and Dimensions

The width of apartment-size stoves can range between 20 inches to 24 inches. The most common dimensions you’ll find for these types of stoves are 40 inches tall, 24 inches wide, and 20 inches deep

Most apartment-size stoves have four ranges and one oven. The oven space of apartment-size stoves is relatively small and can range from between two to three cubic feet. Apartment stoves weigh between 120 to 140 pounds.

Energy Sources

You can find both gas and electric apartment-size stoves. When shopping for gas stoves, make sure to look at the British thermal unit (BTU) levels. BTU levels indicate how quickly a stove can heat up food. 

Look for stoves with a burner that has low BTU levels that are between 1,000 to 5,000 BTU. This allows you to cook food at low heat. Make sure that the stove also has a high-heat burner that reaches at least 9,000 BTUs.

These higher levels will help you to sear and cook food more quickly. Since apartment-size stoves are relatively small, they don’t have the heating capabilities of a commercial-grade stove.

Commercial-grade stoves can have burners that reach up to 25,000 BTUs. Even though commercial-grade stoves have become more common in residential homes, you really don’t need this type of stove for daily living.

These stoves will definitely help you cook food faster and sear at a higher heat. However, if you’re just cooking for yourself and your family, an apartment size stove with 9,000 BTU will suffice. Electric stoves don’t get measured by BTUs.

Instead, they use watts. One watt is the equivalent to about 3.41 BTUs. Most electric stoves use between 2,000 to 5,000 watts with the average usage being 3,000 watts.

You don’t want to have a stove that uses less than 2,000 watts because it will take too long to heat up food. You’ll also want to be careful with stoves that use too many watts. They can end up significantly increasing your electricity bill. 

Spacing Around Apartment Size Stoves

When you’re shopping around for a new stove, don’t forget to consider the amount of space you have around and above the stove. This spacing is important for safe cooking. 

For an apartment size stove, you should have between 24 inches to 30 inches of space between the top of the stove and the vent hood or any cabinets. 

If you have a galley kitchen layout with cabinets located across the stove, make sure to measure the length of the stove’s oven door. The last thing you want is to buy a new stove and have an oven door that can’t open completely because of a lack of space. 

You’ll also want at least two feet of space between a completely open oven door and cabinets. This spacing will allow you to move around safely. 

If you have an overhead microwave, the space between the stove and microwave should be at least 18 inches. If your microwave hangs too closely above your stove, the heat from the stove will eventually wear down and damage it. 

One other kitchen appliance you want to be mindful of is the sink. It’s recommended to have the sink located at least two feet away from the stove. You don’t want a stove that’s too close to a water source, especially if you have an electric stove.

So, a cabinet should be between your sink and stove. Lastly, when creating space for a new apartment size stove, make sure that there’s at least an inch of space on each side of the stove.

Since stoves generate heat, they can slightly expand in size. So, if you want to bring home a new 20-inch apartment size stove, make sure that you have at least 22 inches of space for it.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Small apartment size stove under butcher block counters

liloon/Shutterstock

If you’re shopping for a new apartment size stove, there are several important factors to consider. Here are some answers to questions that many others have had about these stoves. 

What Are Common Stove Sizes?

Stove sizes fall into three general categories:

  • Apartment Size
  • Standard Size
  • Commercial-Style Size

As mentioned before, apartment stove sizes are typically 20 inches to 24 inches wide. Standard stoves are about 30 inches wide. They can be between 25 inches to 27 inches deep and have a height of 36 inches. 

Commercial-style stoves are much wider and can be between 30 inches to 36 inches wide. Some commercial-style stoves can also have double ovens. These types of stoves are even larger and can easily be 48 inches to 60 inches wide. 

Is a 24-inch Apartment Size Stove Too Small?

Many people feel concerned about buying a stove that’s too small for their kitchen. However, when it comes to finding the right stove for you, bigger isn’t always better. So, you don’t need to search for the largest stove that you can fit into a space.

It’s better to shop for a stove based on your needs. For example, if you live on your own or have a small family, an apartment size stove can suffice because you don’t need to cook a high volume of food.

If you don’t cook very often, then a commercial-style stove isn’t necessary. A 24-inch apartment size stove will be able to serve all your basic needs sufficiently. It’ll usually have four ranges so you can still cook more complex meals. 

However, the oven size may be a little small for bakers. The space between racks in the oven may be too small to bake multiple dishes at the same time. Also, some baking sheets may be too wide to fit inside.

What Is the Smallest Type of Stove?

The smallest size that apartment size stoves tend to be is 20 inches. These stoves are well-suited for very small apartments, studios, and some RVs. You can find both gas and electric freestanding 20-inch stoves.

Once you go smaller than 20 inches, you start to enter into the realm of portable stoves.

Portable stoves can be gas or electric, and some can also include a small oven. These stoves are usually able to cook in both low and high heat. However, you’ll only have about one or two ranges. 

Is It Better to Have a Gas or Electric Apartment Size Stove?

There are advantages and disadvantages to both gas and electric stoves. Therefore, it’s important to take time to consider each option to decide which kind of stove is best for you. 

Most gas stoves require a natural gas line, so if your home doesn’t have one, then these stoves aren’t even an option for your home. Gas stoves also allow you to have more control over temperature.

Cooking enthusiasts tend to prefer using a gas stove because it allows them to quickly change heat levels. Electric stoves also change temperatures slowly because the heating pad takes more time to cool down. 

Gas stoves and electric stoves don’t differ too much in price. However, using gas stoves tends to be cheaper as natural gas doesn’t cost as much as electricity in most states.

So, your utility bill will be much lower if you have a gas stove. Although the continued costs of gas stoves are cheaper, electric stoves are more energy-efficient. When turned on, electric stoves will transfer more heat to food than gas stoves. 

When it comes to safety, electric stoves are a little safer than gas stoves because you don’t have to worry about potential gas leaks. You also don’t have to worry about open flames, so it’s less likely for food to catch on fire with electric stoves.

However, it can be more difficult to determine if an electric stovetop is on or still hot after use. Therefore, homes with children have to be more cautious around electric stoves. 

What’s the Most Affordable Type of Apartment Stove?

The prices for apartment stoves range between $500 to $2,000, and you can easily find a decent stove for under $1,000. These stoves won’t have a ton of accessories, but they’re reliable and will cover basic cooking needs.

They also won’t have significantly high BTU levels, so they won’t cook with extreme speed.

Premium stoves will have a more sleek and modern design and utilize more stainless steel around the body. They’ll also have additional features, such as built-in digital timers and higher BTU levels for faster cooking. 

So, Do Apartment Size Stoves Work?

Apartment size stoves are typically between 20 inches to 24 inches wide, and they’re very suitable options for kitchens with limited space.

Although you won’t be able to roast an entire turkey in them when Thanksgiving rolls around, they’re sufficient and reliable for daily living for the average apartment dweller. 

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