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Slide-in vs. Freestanding Range: Which is Best for You? [Bonus: Front-control Range]

by Pam Silvia

Did you know the expected longevity of a kitchen range is anywhere between 13 and 15 years? As you check your proverbial calendar, we implore you to assess the quality of your cooking appliance.

Often the focal point of any cooking space, the kitchen range is deserving of the utmost level of investment, so why not spring for a new one?

The right cooking appliance can make all the difference in elevating your culinary skills. From magnetic induction burners to self-cleaning cycles to connectivity with recipe-management apps, the right kitchen range can help you step up your game and diversify your home menu for years to come.

Before we get ahead of ourselves and regale the benefits of high-end features, let’s go over the basics first.

When it comes to slide-in vs. freestanding ranges, do you know the difference? Do you know what a front-control model looks like? For answers to these and other questions, read on.

Fuel Types

As you probably know, there are gas and electric fuel types for kitchen ranges. If you don’t know where to begin when shopping for a cooking appliance, this is a good place to start.

Gas Ranges

Favored by professional chefs, gas ranges allow for better cooktop control, enabling instant changes in heat since a flame doesn’t need time to warm up or cool down (unlike electric burners).

Compared to their electric counterparts, gas ranges are also more durable, and in the long run, more cost-effective. Yes, gas models typically cost more upon initial purchase, but when your monthly utility bill comes around, you will find that gas is generally cheaper than electricity.

In short, if your family enjoys homecooked meals every day, a gas range is the more prudent purchase.

Electric Ranges

Unless your kitchen is already equipped with wiring for a gas stove, it will be less expensive to install an electric range. Plus, more electric ranges are available for purchase in a broader spectrum of prices.

And if keeping your kitchen clean seems like an impossible task in your busy household, electric ranges with glass-surface cooktops cool down quickly and make easy work out of post-dinner cleanup.

Although still rare fixtures in U.S. households, induction ranges are on the market. Check out our blog for more information about this type of cooking.

Slide-in vs. Freestanding: What are the Differences?

Simply put, when it comes to the “slide-in vs. freestanding range” showdown, the difference lies in how each appliance fits within your kitchen cabinetry and counter spaces.

Typically, slide-in ranges are installed between two built-in cabinets and have a top brim along the sides of the cooking surface that slightly overlaps the top of the counter. In addition, slide-in ranges do not have a top console at the back, giving them the clean look of a built-in cooktop.

Unlike a slide-in model, a freestanding range has finished sides and, often, a back console that rises above the cooktop. It’s called “freestanding” because the appliance can stand on its own without a countertop for support or cabinets to conceal the sides.

What is a Front-control Range?

If this blog is a Venn diagram contrasting slide-in vs. freestanding ranges, front-control ranges take up the intersection of both circles. In other words, with front-control ranges, you get the best of both worlds.

Like a freestanding version, a front-control range has finished sides, making it the preferred replacement option for your freestanding range that might already be on its way out.

And like a slide-in model, a front-control range has no top console, giving homeowners the sleek, modern look of a built-in kitchen range.

Lastly, of course, the knobs or controls are located on the front side of this cooking appliance.

Benefits of a Slide-in Range

While there are fewer slide-in ranges overall, these models offer more premium features.

The Samsung 29.94" Fingerprint Resistant Stainless-Steel Front Control Slide-In Gas Range (NX60T8311SS) is teeming with top-of-the line features—including a convection-oven setting for even roasts and thorough bakes every time. With a large interior capacity of six cubic feet, voice-enabled controls, and Wi-Fi connectivity, this range could live in your home, giving you something to be thankful for—especially with the holidays creeping up. 

In addition, slide-in ranges have more flexible installation options, as these appliances can even be installed in a kitchen island or peninsula.

Samsung slide-in ranges with overlapping cooktops also prevent food spilling down the sides of the appliance. If you’ve got an eye for interior design, other brands offer trim kits for a more contemporary appearance.

Benefits of a Freestanding Range

Compared to slide-in ranges, freestanding models in the mid-range typically cost less ($700–900 MSRP vs. $1,100–1,300 MSRP). By far the most available model of the types of kitchen ranges, the freestanding range is a good choice for non-standard counter heights.

For a practical cooking appliance that doesn’t skimp on top-notch features, the GE Profile™ Series 29.88" Stainless-Steel Freestanding Electric Range (PB911SJSS) has you covered. Equipped with a seamless glass surface, a self-cleaning option with steam, fast preheating, and a fifth cooking element to keep food warm, this appliance enables versatility in the kitchen without breaking your momentum. If you’re juggling a busy schedule with work and kids, this freestanding range takes the stresses of dinner and post-meal cleanup out of the equation.

Benefits of a Front-control Range

Remember: A front-control range is not mutually exclusive with a slide-in range or a freestanding model. There are front-control options available in both styles.

In addition to contributing to a seamless kitchen aesthetic, front-control ranges offer more safety in terms of not having you reach over sizzling skillets or an open flame to control the heat—some models even offer push-turn knobs for optimal security.

With that being said, we turn your attention to Frigidaire Gallery.

The brand’s 29.19" Stainless-Steel Freestanding Electric Range (FGEH3047VF) is packed with time-saving features like True Convection baking and a powerful 3,200W Quick Boil element. A true pioneer, this front-control range is the first in the industry to offer an Air Fry setting—enabled by just the touch of a button!

True to their name, ranges offer an array of styles and features to streamline home cooking. Check out what our appliances catalog can do for your home. For any questions, feel free to call or visit our experts at Spencer’s TV & Appliance. Start building the kitchen of your dreams today!