So here we get to the details! Our system is known as an 'Electrikit'. It's made in Devon by a highly professional firm that we like a lot called 'Oilwarm'. They are friendly, professional and well regarded. Read more on why this is important.
Our system is different to the basic electric conversions that pop an element where the flame would have been and leave it at that. Read more here on why we think this is not good enough.
The basis of your newly converted electric Aga is three electric elements (or four in a 4 oven cooker!). Each hotplate is replaced with a new one that looks identical but has an electric element integrated underneath. An electric element is similarly installed between the roasting and simmering ovens. The main barrel assembly is removed which is a significant part of the 'mass' of an Aga - this makes heating up times shorter and the ovens more responsive all round. It's important to note that it still cooks in exactly the same way as a normal Aga, with radiant heat. It's not a 'normal' cooker when converted; just a more flexible Aga!
The hotplate elements are controlled by simple dials and the ovens electronically, you can set the exact temperature you need! All the controls are hidden behind the control panel door just where they used to be! If you have a 4 oven cooker then a separate element warms the oven controlled by a simple dial.
So, in a nutshell, why convert your Aga to electric?
- Save money on fuel (a lot of money)
- Save money on servicing (all of it!)
- Your Aga will look exactly the same (unless you choose to re-enamel at the same time!)
- No flue required. Remove yours entirely or leave in place for decoration, up to you!
- Remove risk of fuel leaks from your kitchen, neither gas nor oil is much fun if not behaving!
- Remove combustion from your kitchen, no risk of CO escape (do you have a CO alarm?)
- It only takes a day or less.
What does the conversion mean mean in practice?
- You can use both hotplates at any temperature; two simmering plates? no problem! They heat up from cold to frying temperature in about 10 minutes and provide heat in exactly the same way as a conventional Aga from that point.
- You can control the top oven to a very specific temperature and leave it off if you choose when not in use. Make baking a lot easier ;) The lower oven's heat is always relative to whatever you have the top oven set to. We reccommend 235dc but its up to you. You'll still have the mercury readout on the front but it'll be just as inaccurate as ever!
- It saves you money, a lot of money. Most estimates are that the savings are around 80% of your current fuel bill. Leave it running flat out all the time and you won't save much but why on earth would you do that?! In addition to this there are zero servicing costs.
The key to using an 'Electrikit' Aga is it's flexibility. In the summer you can leave the ovens off and use a hotplate for frying and in the winter you can return the Aga to 'traditional' mode and have the ovens ready for use 24/7 and the hotplates on low to warm the kitchen. It's up to you.
Our system is really a simpler version of a Agas latest cookers but there are a couple of things we can add to the system to give it the 'remote control' functionality of a newer Aga.
- The hotplates and ovens are powered from separate 13amp plugs. By turning the dials and setting the oven temperature to your desired temperature and then plugging the power supply into a timer you can have the hotplates, ovens or both ready as you walk in the door.
- If you want to control them remotely we can even use an internet connected plug combined with an app on your phone to control the hotplates and ovens. Is it quite a slick as a 'Total Control'? No; but its very useful, practical and a fraction of the cost ;)
Find out more on our 'Aga electric conversions homepage'
Matthew is from a farming family near Bath and a graduate of King's College London who decided not to follow the 'standard' path into banking or the law. He has been working with Aga's in some form or another since 2003. Matthew runs Blake and Bull from beautiful Bradford on Avon, near Bath. Alf the golden retriever makes sure the working day finishes at 6pm sharp - dog walk time!