Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Buzzing Burners

Electric burners that hum when on.
  [vote for,

Some people can walk into a room in which a TV is on and hear a high-pitched whine, even when the sound is muted. If we could make electric stove burners make a similar sound, it would be harder to accidentally leave the burners on after cooking has finished. This sounds irritating, but you wouldn't hear it with the fan on and food bubbling. Besides, if it's irritating, people would be more likely to turn it off when they didn't need it anymore.

Or, people could just convert to gas.

centauri, Aug 30 2000


       Having the burners always make noise when on would be annoying. On the other hand, it would be possible for a microprocessor-controlled stove to determine whether anything was on a burner and either shut itself off or give an alarm if left unattended with nothing on it; indeed, such a stove could probably also detect when a pot of liquid had boiled dry and shut itself off when that occurred.<p>   

       I still miss, though, an old gas burner my parents used to have with a thermostat on it. I wonder why you never see those anymore?
supercat, Oct 21 2000

       I know of a stove with one 'safety' burner -- one element which will not work unless it detects the weight of a pot or pan on it. Naturally, this means that it doesn't work under all sorts of interesting circumstances and is generally unpleasant to use. Maybe a simple infrared checker would be more useful -- if there's anything at all on top, the beam is blocked and the thing assumes that everything is fine. I suppose that then people would become even more careless (I know I would) and would constantly be restarting it by resting things on the elements (hands and so on) which they hadn't planned to cook.   

       There are some grills and things which automatically start a noisy fan whenever you turn them on and stop it again when you turn it off. That's not unlike this idea, I think.
Monkfish, Nov 14 2000

       What's the point of having *one* safety burner?
egnor, Nov 15 2000

       I haven't tried this, but you might try puting a rattling piece of magnetic metal near the element inside the burner. The 60hz of the AC power line would make it vibrate.
Amishman35, Feb 13 2001

       egnor: I have no idea. Maybe so they could tout it as a safety feature while still providing three burners that worked from time to time.
Monkfish, Feb 13 2001


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