Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Range Hoods - Choosing the Right Ventilation System

Food cooking on the stove has the power to make a whole families mouth water, but when the smell of last night’s dinner is still present at breakfast, you either need to empty your garbage, or think about installing a better kitchen ventilation system.

Range hoods (also commonly referred to as Ventilation Hoods or Extractor Hoods) are a staple in kitchens, often due to their style, but also in large part for their function. So, what do they do exactly? They hang out in the kitchen area and work hard to keep the air clean, extracting grease, smoke, fumes, dust and grime – which keeps it away from your walls, fabrics, pores and lungs.

What to look for

For every 10,000 BTU your gas stove puts off, your range hood should have at least 100 CFMs (cubic feet per minute). It is also important to take into consideration the width of your appliance as a guide – You should have a minimum of 100 CFMs per linear foot if your range is against the wall, or 150 CFMs per linear foot if it is on an island, as we mentioned in our professional cooking appliances post.

Noise level is another important consideration when choosing a ventilation option. Noise level of range hoods is rated in sones. The higher the sone rating, the louder the fan. Typical sone ratings for range hoods run from two at low speed to six at high speed. For context, a normal conversation takes place at about four sones. The Home Ventilating Institute recommends that range hoods not be louder than 9 sones.

Ducting options

Ducted Hoods – These range hoods extract the elements and vent them through a duct, which completely removes the grease, smoke and irritants from your home. The duct should always lead outdoors – never to an attic or another room.

Most range hoods have their fans (or blowers) mounted inside the hood. However, ducted range hoods also allow for remote installation of the fan, on an outside wall, or on your roof. Remote installation of the vent fan is more efficient because it pulls rather than pushes the air through your range hood. Since the fan operates on the outside of your home, noise levels are also significantly reduced, making remote installation a must to consider if noise is a                                                         concern

Ductless Hoods – Ductless (also known as duct-free, non-vented or recirculating) hoods are exactly as the name implies. If you do not or cannot install a duct system in your home, ductless hoods will allow you to expel cooking grease and steam from the air through a filter. As the “recirculating” name hints, these hoods suck air through the filter and then recirculate the cleaned air back, so heat and humidity may remain. It is important if you choose this type of hood that you replace your filter as per the manufacturers recommendations, otherwise, it will not be able to work to its full potential.

Convertible Hoods – Convertible hoods are a more flexible option, in that they can be installed in different ducting modes, so you can choose to use it as a ducted hood or as a non-vented hood.

When choosing your range hood, there is much to consider - from stove power, size and location, room size, and fan noise. If you’re considering a range hood for your Long Island remodel, we’ll be happy to help you find one that will work optimally in your space. Contact us for more information.

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