Wall ovens have become a staple of today's gourmet kitchens. Aside from their streamlined look, they also offer other key advantages, including saving you from straining your back when inserting or removing food and freeing up space for lower-level cabinetry. While they’re certainly not cheap, wall ovens can lend a significantly updated look to your kitchen—plus a bit of added luxury.
So how do you decide on the right wall oven for your home? In addition to budget, you’ll also want to consider standard wall oven sizes and the various features that set models apart. Here’s what to know.
Before You Replace Your Wall Oven
Wall ovens can last for 13 to 20 years, depending on how they're maintained and how much use they get. If your wall oven starts acting up, consider whether you should replace or repair it. If your oven is in good visual shape and not that old, it's often wise to have a professional come in and see what the issue is before deciding to replace it. You might find out the repair is easy and inexpensive.
That said, in some cases it is more cost-effective to replace a wall oven. If it's reaching the end of its lifespan, outdated in style, damaged beyond repair, or too costly to fix, then it's probably time to start shopping. That also can be true if you just want a new oven that offers more functionality
Buying Considerations for a Wall Oven
If you’re replacing an existing wall oven with a new one, try to stick with the same size. This will save you from having to do any additional structural work.
But if you’re renovating your kitchen and starting from scratch, the standard sizes that you’ll have to choose from are usually going to be 24, 27, and 30 inches wide, though you also can find wall ovens as wide as 36 inches. The interior of a wall oven is generally smaller than a standard range by about 1.5 cubic feet, so keep that in mind when choosing a size, as well as when choosing whether you want one or two wall ovens installed.
Consider the amount of wall space you have to devote to your wall oven. If it’s limited, your size options likely will be too. But if you have space to spare, go with the size that you like the look of best and that will look balanced with the rest of your kitchen appliances.
Wall oven doors come in three styles: a standard swing style hinge on the bottom, a swing style hinge on the side, or double French doors with side hinges.
- Standard swing style: The most common and familiar style of an oven door is the standard swing style door that has the hinge on the bottom. The door swings down, and to access the oven you reach across the door.
- Side swing style: An oven door that swings to the side is handy in kitchens where there's not room enough for the door to swing down and you to stand behind the open door. With the side swing style, you also are not reaching over the hot door and pulling out dishes.
- French door style: A wall oven with French doors offers easy access with doors that open from the center. This design is helpful for when you're putting in a turkey for roasting, for example. Plus, it is more space-efficient because the doors are smaller and don't stick out as much when they're in the open position.
There are lots of wall oven features to choose from. So decide what your must-haves are before you shop—whether it's just a basic wall oven or one that provides you with all the bells and whistles. Some thoughts are:
- Convection or standard: Convection ovens circulate hot air to help you achieve more balanced temperatures and shorter cook times. If you want a convection wall oven, you’ll probably end up spending a couple hundred dollars more than you would otherwise, which might not be worth it if you’ve never had issues cooking with a standard oven.
- Gas or electric: Most wall ovens today are electric, but gas options are available. However, note that gas models tend to be on the lower end in terms of quality and features.
- Manual or self-cleaning: Self-cleaning wall ovens run quite a bit pricier than wall ovens that you clean yourself. It’s probably not going to be worth it if you don’t cook very often. But if you’re not fond of heavy scrubbing, then it could be worth going with a self-cleaning option.
- Fancy features: The pricier you go with your wall oven, the fancier the features get—think internal temperature probes that let you know when your meat is cooked, steam assists to help you bake better bread, and Wi-Fi integration so you can control your oven from your smartphone. Other features that hike up the price include the quality of the viewing window, interior lighting, an air fryer feature, or an infrared grilling system.
Types of Wall Ovens
As you do your research, consider what you’d like in terms of stacking style and type of wall oven. You can choose to have a single wall oven, double-stacked wall ovens, or even triple-stacked wall ovens that usually include a microwave or warming drawer as the third feature. You can also do a double stack with a microwave instead of two ovens.
Single Wall Oven
A single wall oven is just one oven placed in a kitchen wall. Usually installed at about average waist height, the oven capacity will depend on the size of unit you purchase. A 24-inch wall oven will provide approximately 2 to 3 cubic feet, while a 30-inch wall oven will give you around 5 cubic feet.
Double-Stacked Wall Oven
If you want the convenience of cooking items simultaneously at different temperatures, then a double-stacked wall oven would be a good choice. You can also choose to have one be a convection oven and the other be a standard oven. This unit is perfect if you’re a frequent home cook, if you regularly host events in your home, for cooking during the holidays, or if you have a large family.
Wall Oven and Microwave Combo
Another good option is the combination wall oven and microwave. With two appliances built into one, a meal can be cooked in the oven while you defrost or heat other foods in the microwave.
Triple-Stacked Wall Oven
A triple-stacked wall oven is going to be the most expensive of all, and it will take up the most space. This type of wall oven is for the serious home cook. They sport many high-end features and most likely will have a standard oven, convection oven, and warming drawer.
Wall ovens vary in price depending on the style, type, model, and features. Typically, they can run from $500 to as high as $7,000 and even more. A double-stacked wall oven will average between $2,300 to $7,000. This price does not include the cost of installation.
Appliances like wall ovens often go on sale during holidays and other events, including Memorial Day, Labor Day, President's Day or Black Friday. If you can wait to get one during a sale to save money, try to shop early to avoid waiting due to low supply or delivery delays.
How to Choose a Wall Oven
There are myriad options when it comes to wall ovens. With so many choices, it can get a bit overwhelming. So you should start preparing yourself to determine what is going to work for you—from the amount of space you have for an oven to what you can afford. Ask yourself these questions:
How Much Will You Use Your Wall Oven?
Consider realistically the usage your wall oven will get, as this will help you select the type and features you need and will actually use. Do you have a large family you will be cooking for, or will you be cooking for two? Do you need a microwave or the capability to cook or bake multiple dishes at the same time? Will you use all the additional "cool" features that cost extra? If you cook for just a small amount of people, you might only need a single wall oven.
What Does the Rest of the Kitchen Look Like?
When choosing a wall oven, make sure to match the color and style with the rest of your kitchen appliances. A white wall oven won't match well if all your other appliances are stainless steel. You might also look at the style of the handles to try to get ones similar to your other appliances.
How Long Will You Be Staying Where You Are?
Because a wall oven is installed into a kitchen wall, this appliance will be staying if you decide to move. Think about how long you are planning on residing in your current home. If it's only temporary, you might not choose to go with a higher-end unit that's customized to your tastes and instead go with something that has more mass appeal.
Where to Shop
Most home improvement stores, appliance centers, and online retailers sell wall ovens. A wall oven is a pricey purchase and something to consider carefully before buying. When making such a substantial investment, many people choose to go view it in person first. This gives you the opportunity to see exactly what it looks like, explore the feature options, and ask a salesperson questions.
Still, you might feel comfortable buying online without seeing it or just not have the time or ability to go to a store. If so, spend a bit of time researching, looking at reviews, and chatting with a customer service rep before making the final decision.
Whichever way you decide to purchase your new wall oven, make sure you know the delivery options and return policy. Also, check to see how the seller handles installation.
As you shop, know that there are wall ovens out there for all budgets. But as with most appliances, the more you spend, the more you get in return. Keep all of the factors above in mind as you shop. And be sure to have measurements of your space handy when you’re browsing models, so you can choose the perfect wall oven (or ovens) for your kitchen in terms of size, style, and additional features.
Do wall ovens require a vent?
These ovens have an internal vent, so there's no need to vent a wall oven to the outside.
Is it hard to install a wall oven?
If you're not familiar with electrical wiring or not used to doing home repairs and remodeling, it might be best (and safest) to let a professional install your wall oven.
Are wall ovens built-in?
Wall ovens are placed inside built-in wall nooks or cabinet spaces.