I've been cooking since I was about 16 and over the years I've cleaned my fair share of dirty ovens. It's a nasty job and someone has to do it, but why should it be me? That's why when we went shopping for a new stove 2 years ago, I decided that regardless of cost, I was going to banish the need to get down and dirty with smelly oven cleaners and rubber gloves. I have always had an affinity for anything black and when I saw the Frigidaire black, ceramic cook top self cleaning oven sitting oh so prettily in the show room of a local furniture store, I knew I had to have it.
As the sales clerk walked up to me I quickly pointed to the gorgeous little 30" model in front of me and said only "We'll take that little baby, please!" He laughed and commented that he liked a woman who knew what she wanted and we quickly sealed the deal with a payment.
After getting the stove home and placing it carefully into it's rightful place which was simple to do as it is equipped with nothing more than a heavy duty plug that fit nicely into the receptacle provided for it, we slid it into place smoothly thanks to the built in wheels that allows me to pull it out to clean beneath it with little effort.
The sleek ceramic top and the shiny black paint melts beautifully into the black glass front that makes the stove look very classy. The glass that covers the door simply clips off after unscrewing 2 screws inside the door, for easy cleaning so that you can clean the entire front panel of the stove easily and not have to worry about missing spots around the window that allows you to peek inside when things are cooking. The top comes with four large burners that glow red when in use and the stove top has an indicator that remains lit even after the burners are turned off which serves as a visual warning that the stove top may still be hot even though turned off. Once the warning light is off the burners are then cool to the touch. I really like this particular safety feature.
The self cleaning oven didn't get used for almost a year after purchasing it (fortunately we aren't really messy oven users) mainly because I was rather intimidated by it. My husband found it quite interesting that I had wanted such a stove for so long yet when I finally got it, I didn't want to use the one main feature I bought it for. The oven has a self locking mechanism that is activated once the self cleaning cycle is initiated and the seal that surrounds the oven door along with the heavy duty lock will remain impenetrable the moment the cleaning cycle is started. Unless the cleaning cycle is cancelled within the first few minutes of being initiated after starting, it will not release the oven door even if the cycle is turned off until the oven has reached a safe cooler temperature again. Cleaning the oven, once I got the fear of it burning the house down over with, is a simple matter of pushing the Self clean button on the console. The door locks automatically and the stove heats up to just over 800 Fahrenheit. During the cleaning cycle any food or grease that is in the oven burns off and can catch on fire but everything is self contained and designed for safety while operating in this mode. Once the oven has cooled, it's a simple matter of using a damp cloth to wipe away what little ash is left. It cleans surprisingly well and leaves very little residue afterwards. Our first use of the cleaning feature did cause a bit of smoke that only lasted a few minutes while it burned off the gunk that had caked onto it during my 'scared to use' phase but once I discovered that the stove was made for these high temperatures and I wasn't going to melt along with the dirt, I've used it since and haven't had the same smoking problem again.
The ceramic top is quite easy to clean and normally I simply wipe it with a damp cloth and shine it with a paper towel. When someone other than myself cooks on it, I'll usually use the ceramic cleaner that came with the oven and cleaning up after messy marvins such as my husband and his spaghetti dinners, is quick and simple to do.
The oven cooks evenly and maintains an even temperature throughout. My youngest daughter loves baking with it as it always turns out 'just right' muffins, cupcakes and cakes, helping my daughter to gain a good deal of confidence in her culinary skills.
The burners heat up fast and foods cook evenly and quickly on the stove top.
Even though the stove is all black, I have found that it is no more difficult to keep shiny clean than a white one would be.
As for energy conservation, this stove hasn't been a problem. It's rated to use only 480 kws a month when the oven is used daily and because it preheats quickly, the length of time it is in use is usually quite minimal. As the self cleaning aspect would push the energy required up a fair bit from that rating, we only use the cleaning cycle when a quick wipe just won't do.
Overall, I am extremely pleased with my stove. So far I've had absolutely no issues with it and it continues to work beautifully. I liked the Frigidaire stove so much that I decided to purchase a Frigidaire dishwasher a few months ago and will be purchasing a Frigidaire Fridge as soon as I can find one that will accommodate all of the stuff we usually find to put into the fridge every grocery shop. The fridge we'll be replacing is also a Frigidaire brand and is now 20 years old. Frigidaire has proven to us that they are a reliable brand at a reasonable price and I have no problems purchasing their products.