This article explains what pre-heat is and why it is used.
As far as using pre-heat or waiting for the oven to heat up without using the pre-heat setting.....I have never noticed a time difference. The buzzer lets you know when you can put the food in the oven at the best heating time. If you wait longer than the necessary time for the oven to reach the desired degree then you are wasting electricity.
"here would be little or no infrared radiation to brown or char the top of the cake.
This, by the way, is why you pre-heat an oven"
It describes the action, pre-heat, it does not relate to the difference between the feature or setting Pre-Heat and the act of waiting for an oven to reach a certain temperature before placing an item in it
That is why I explained it with my next response. The pre-heat setting lets you know the oven is ready for maximum result at the time you place the food inside. The only savings I have seen from reading and experience of using the pre-heat setting is the money I would save by not waiting 10 minutes to place food in oven when the pre-heat setting/buzzer lets me know I can put the food in the oven at 5 minutes.
And the higher degree you set the oven temp, the more electricity you will use.
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