Purchasing Considerations for Combi Ovens

Here are six considerations foodservice operators should weigh when purchasing a combi oven.

Depending on a variety of factors, combi ovens typically have a service life of approximately eight to 15 years. When purchasing a new unit, there are a number of factors to consider. Here are just a few:

Look at the operation's volume before deciding on oven size and type. Smaller facilities need to factor in catering needs, if applicable.

  1. Consider the operation's budget versus the unit's lifecycle cost to determine the capital outlay over the life of the combi oven.
  2. Determine the skill level of the operation, as some ovens are geared toward more experienced kitchen personnel. Keep in mind that training sessions may be necessary.
  3. Figure out exactly how the oven will be used to ensure its features and options will be fully utilized.
  4. Compare different units' water usage and gas consumption to ensure optimum energy efficiency.
  5. Because a combi oven can become the workhorse of the kitchen, confirm the unit's record of reliability.
  6. Make sure the combi provides program flexibility, so the oven's functioning can change with the operation's evolving needs.

Combi ovens require space under the kitchen's exhaust hood, so it is important to make sure enough room exists before purchasing it. If space is limited, consider a countertop unit or stackable model. Also, because the unit can combine the features and functionality of other pieces of equipment, those items may prove to be redundant, thus freeing some space beneath the hood.

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