What are BTUs on a Range and How Many Do I Need?

What are BTUs on a Range and How Many Do I Need?


If you’re in the market for a new stove, you may be wondering, “What are BTUs on a range?” Simply put, BTU is a way to measure heat output from your kitchen range or oven. When considering new cooking appliances, it’s helpful to know more about BTUs and how many your range really needs.

Breaking Down the BTU: What are BTUs On a Range?

Feeling like an informed consumer in the face of changing technology can be difficult when it comes to appliances. Our oven and range experts‘ guide to what a stove BTU rating really means and measures can help guide your next range purchase.

What Is a BTU?

The term BTU (British Thermal Unit) measures heat output and is how we classify the power that a stove burner generates. In technical terms, 1 BTU raises the temperature of 1 pound of water by 1°F. When we wonder “what are BTUs on a range?” we’re asking how powerful a burner is and how rapidly it can deliver heat.

what are btus on a range

How Many BTUs Does My Range Need?

When considering how many BTUs do I need for my gas range it can be tempting to search for the most power possible. But a high amount of BTUs on every burner isn’t necessary for most daily cooking practices. For example, simmering requires a burner with a low and steady output while sautéing is optimized over medium heat.

To best address all your cooking needs, we recommend choosing a stove with a range of BTU outputs. This includes burners that provide low heat at 1000-5000 BTUs and medium output burners at about 9000 BTUs. Typical BTUs of a gas stove should also include at least one high heat burner that generates 12,000-18,000 BTUs.

Considering a Commercial-Grade Stove With Higher BTUs?

To better serve the demands of a busy restaurant, commercial stoves provide more burners generating a higher level of BTUs. What are BTUs on a range for commercial use? Often, they can reach as high as 25,000 BTUs.

Commercial-grade ranges have become more widely available for residential use and they certainly have a high-end appeal. But before you make this leap it’s helpful to first consider if your cooking preferences really dictate a need for more power. If you’re passionate about professional cooking or do a lot of stir-frying, boiling and searing for a busy family, this could be the case. We also recommend that you make sure your cookware can tolerate the high heat of commercial-grade ranges before making this purchase.

How many BTUs do I need for my gas range

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Do Electric Ranges Have BTUs?

A stove BTU rating typically refers just to the power of gas stoves. The power output of electric ranges is measured in watts, with 1 watt equal to about 3.41 BTUs per hour.

Now that you know all about BTUs, learn more about the difference between a slide-in and freestanding ranges.