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White Paper: Knock-Down Ovens

July 15, 2014

Construction of Knock-Down Oven on job site
Construction of Knock-Down Oven on job site

What is a Knock-Down Oven?

Knock-Down ovens are not assembled and tested before shipment. Rather, they are built at the jobsite where the oven will be used. This is in contrast to the majority of industrial ovens, which are fully assembled and tested at the manufacturer’s facility prior to shipment.

Why Purchase a Knock-Down Oven?

When there is poor access to a jobsite due to small doors or restricted aisle ways, or where only elevator access is available, there may not be sufficient space to move the fully assembled oven into place. In that case, a knock-down oven is the only alternative.

Knock-Down Oven Installed
Knock-Down Ovens installed are not less expensive
than pre-assembled ovens

Are Knock-Down Ovens Less Expensive?

The initial sell price of a knock-down oven is often lower than a pre-assembled oven, but the price does not include assembly of the equipment, which can represent an additional cost of 30% or more, due to the manpower required to assemble the oven at the jobsite. When the cost of assembly is included, knock-down ovens are typically not less expensive than pre-assembled ovens.

How Does the Performance of a Knock-Down Oven Compare to a Pre-Assembled Oven?

Since knock-down ovens are not assembled and tested before shipment, design problems or defective components are usually not identified until after the equipment is fully installed at the purchaser’s facility. This can cause delayed startup and lost production while a solution is being implemented. Heaters, blowers, and controls each typically have a lead time of 3 to 4 weeks, so it can be devastating to the installation schedule if any of these items are found to be incorrect after the equipment is already installed.

Is a Knock-Down Oven the Same as a “Kit” Oven?

A “Kit” oven is a type of knock-down oven that is marketed as a less expensive alternative to traditional ovens. As mentioned above, however, the total equipment cost is not necessarily lower after the cost of assembly is added. Also, there is considerable expertise and experience required to efficiently build an oven, and “kit” ovens often result in disappointment because the reassembly instructions are not clear, or don’t exist. The purchaser may be disappointed when all they receive is several pallets of insulated panels, some fans, burner and a control panel.


A knock-down oven is sometimes the only solution when an oven needs to be installed in a tight space, but is not recommended as a lower-cost alternative to a fully assembled design.

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