While they may not be at the top of your list when designing your next kitchen remodel, hoods are key in keeping your cooking area odor free and the air clean. Here’s a look at some popular range hood styles to help you pick the best one for your kitchen.
Your range hood is like a kitchen workhorse. Not only does it remove smells, it also helps clear the air of grease and moisture, as well as pollutants like carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide, and ultra fine food particles. But that doesn’t mean your range hood can’t complement the overall design of your kitchen.
In fact, these days there is a variety of range hood styles to meet pretty much any kitchen space. But picking the right one comes down to a combination of design and how you use your kitchen. So, what are your options? Let’s start with the 2 main types of hoods.
1. Ducted Hood
Ducted hoods remove dirty and particles out of the home via duct pipes that lead from the kitchen to the outdoors. Commercial kitchens prefer these as they are very efficient in keeping the air clean.But they are also great for residential homes, especially if you do a lot of cooking. A ducted hood will require relatively direct access to the exterior of your home, so that may limit where you can place them in your kitchen.
2. Ductless hood
As the name suggests, a ductless hood does not use ducts to remove dirty air. Rather, they use exhaust fans to filter air and smoke before recirculating it back in the room. They may offer a bit more flexibility in your design as they can be installed virtually anywhere in the kitchen. However, they should be avoided when using with pro-style appliances as they may not be adequate to filter the particles those appliances can produce.
What about power?
The volume of air your hood can move is measured in cubic feet per minute (cfm). Essentially, the higher the cfm, the more particles and odors are being removed, and the cleaner your air should be. A good rule of thumb is, if you have more powerful burners or a greater number of them, you should look for a hood with higher cfm.
At a minimum, they should circulate 300 (cfm). But some can go as high as 1200 cfm — ideal for avid cooks.
Kitchen range hood styles
Wall mounted hoods are installed over your range directly in the kitchen wall and remove harmful air and particles via a duct system. Since this type of style is a ducted hood, they are very efficient at keeping the kitchen air clean and getting rid of odors.
Typically, they vent air out through an exterior wall behind the hood, so these are ideal if the range is exterior wall mounted. These units may be larger in size, so you’ll need enough wall space to install them.
Another common type of range hood style is undercabinet. They are generally more compact than wall mounted hoods and can offer more installation flexibility. They are placed over the range and underneath existing cabinets, though you want to make sure you leave enough space between the top of the range and the bottom of the hood — generally about 36 inches.
Under cabinet hoods can be less visually imposing than wall mounted ones, and they can be ducted or non-ducted. Ducted types can cut down on storage however if the ducts run through the related cabinetry.
If your range is in your island, you may opt for a ceiling mounted hood. These hoods include a vent which attaches to a duct inside the ceiling in order to remove unhealthy air and odors. These can be pricier than other types since they are finished on all sides. They can also be noisier because they require more power to work effectively in the more open island space. However, if you have an island range and cook a lot, this is often a healthier choice than our next type, the downdraft.
If you’re all about keeping the vent out of sight, then a downdraft hood may be for you. These work by rising from behind your range when you’re cooking, then retracting when not in use. Since they work by trying to pull air down rather than sucking it up through a vent, they can be less effective than other types. So, if you do a lot of cooking, that’s something consider. Still, if you’re going for a sleek kitchen look, these will complement that style.
Vent Hood Insert
A vent hood insert is an exhaust fan that is fitted into a hood built under cabinets. They can be ducted or non-ducted and come in a range of cfm ranges, as well as a range of sizes and styles. In terms of design, since the insert is placed inside the cabinet, it is mostly kept out of sight.
While stainless steel is among the most common materials for range hoods, that doesn’t mean you can’t take yours to the next level.
A relatively easy way to customize your kitchen hood is to use a wood surround. Styles range from simple to more decorative, and they come in a wide assortment or colors to either complement or contrast your cabinets.
Wood style kitchen hoods are a great way to soften up a stainless steel vent and help your hood become a more seamless part of your overall kitchen design.
If you like the look of metal but want to do something beyond simple stainless steel, you have a few more options. Copper hoods can add a warm, rustic feel to your kitchen.
Zinc hoods are also becoming more popular. They can start off shiny but age over time and oxidize, resulting in a pewter finish.
If you really like your tile backsplash and want to carry that through to your hood, you can do that as well. Tile hood surrounds are a growing trend. These features can make your hood a true design focal point in your kitchen, or help it to blend in.
Are you thinking about a kitchen remodel and aren’t sure where to start? We’d love to discuss your project. Simply schedule a conversation with us!