Range Hood Selection, Tips, and Maintenance

Are you planning your kitchen remodel and finding yourself stuck on selecting the right range hood? With hundreds and hundreds of options available, range hood selection can be quite difficult and confusing!

But it doesn’t have to be!

So grab your wish list and objectives, and let’s go through a quick checklist to find that perfect range hood for your next kitchen remodel!

Kitchen Backsplash Design

Range Hood Objectives

Before you go shopping for a new range hood though, you will need to think about its intended use, purpose, and your expected outcomes (expectation management).

 

What do you need it to do? Fit, Form, and Function???

Fit

  • Physical Size constraints
  • Shape constraints
  • Dimensional constraints (length, width, height, depth)

Range Hood Installation

Form

  • Style (see Range Hood selection below).
  • Materials – copper, stainless steel, wood, hidden (insert), trim, accents, etc)
  • Filter type – metal mesh or metal baffle
  • Ease of maintenance and cleaning

Range Hood Installation

Function

    • Performance requirements – Pairing with stove and room size will define this requirement. That’s why its important to plan and know the additional equipment and appliances to be integrated. 

Range Hood Installation

  • What size range hood do you need – or rather, CFM (Cubic Feet per Minute) of air moved? Refer back to the Range Hood Tutorial/Buyers Guide from the Range Hood Store.
    • Single motor (100-900 CFM)
    • Dual motor (1000+ CFM)

Wish List

What would your “perfect” range hood do (in terms of features)? Here are some good examples to ask yourself:

  • Provide heat removal when cooking?
  • Condensation removal when cooking?
  • Food odor removal when cooking? No one likes a smelly house!
  • Easy to clean? 
  • Dishwasher friendly (grease filters)?
  • Noisy or ultra quiet? Are you tired of yelling over your current hood?
  • Any deal breakers? Size, shape, location, color, materials, etc.

 

Range Hood Selection

Bases on your requirements and wish list, select a range hood! Here are the most common types: 

Under Cabinet Recirculating Range Hood (non-vented)

Range Hood Installation

  • Non-vented
  • For exterior or interior wall locations
  • Loud motor in the kitchen hood assembly
  • Did I mention they are loud!
  • It only filters the air
  • Doesn’t remove heat or humidity
  • I don’t recommend this option, but if you must have a microwave over the range, then this is your only option.

Under Cabinet Range Hood (vented)  

Range Hood Installation

  • Vented to outside
  • Good for exterior or interior wall locations
  • Exterior wall: Loud motor in the kitchen  hood assembly. Duct runs out of the rear, and exits through the wall. 
  • Interior wall: Loud motor in the kitchen hood assembly. Duct runs out of the top, and through upper cabinets to exterior wall exit – NOT RECOMMENDED, AS IT WASTES CABINET SPACE
  • Interior wall: Quiet operation with remote blower if attic/basement space is available

Freestanding Range Hood (vented) –loud motor in the kitchen assembly

Range Hood Installation

  • Includes “Island” range hoods
  • Vented to outside
  • Good for exterior or interior wall locations
  • Exterior wall: Loud motor in the kitchen hood assembly. Duct runs out of the rear, and exits through the wall
  • Interior wall: Loud motor in the kitchen hood assembly. Duct runs out of the top, and through upper cabinets to exterior wall exit – NOT RECOMMENDED, AS IT WASTES CABINET SPACE
  • Interior wall: Quiet operation with remote blower if attic/basement space is available 
  • Island*: Duct runs out of the top, and through the ceiling cavity to exterior wall exit. In some instances, it could be used with a remote blower in an attic ( * downdraft at the countertop level, may be another option)

Range Hood Insert (vented) 

Range Hood Selection

  • Vented to outside
  • Good for exterior or interior wall locations
  • “Inserts” into custom kitchen cabinet assembly, with a front service panel
  • Exterior wall: Loud motor in the kitchen hood assembly. Duct runs out of the rear, and exits through the wall
  • Interior wall: Loud motor in the kitchen hood assembly. Duct runs out of the top, and through upper cabinets to exterior wall exit – NOT RECOMMENDED, AS IT WASTES CABINET SPACE
  • Interior wall: Quiet operation with remote blower if attic/basement space is available 

Remote Blower   

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  • Super-quiet operation vs a standard range hood with motor in the hood assembly (kitchen)
  • Non-exterior wall application – pipe/duct can run in a dedicated wall cavity, out the back or top of the range hood box, and to the remote blower where it exists the house (basement or attic)
  • Refer back to the Remote Blower Range Hood Installation blog for more info
  • See this range hood insert (above) fully integrated and installed during the Farmhouse Kitchen remodel

Range Hood Maintenance

Follow these simple tips to keep your new range hood operating like new and prevent it from becoming “gunked” up with grease.

Cleaning

  • Clean per manufacturer’s instructions
  • Exterior –  wipe down outside of cabinet as needed

Range Hood Installation

  • Interior – wipe down inside of cabinet as needed

Range Hood Selection

 

  • Bottom tray/channel – clean regularly with the filter inserts

Range Hood Selection

  • Mesh filters /  Metal baffles (shown) – wash as needed (many are dishwasher friendly). The baffles are more durable, don’t wear out, and are easier to clean, as they are “commercial” style – just smaller!

Range Hood Selection

  • Remote blower – check drip tray annually. Clean as needed.
Duct Attaches to Remote Blower in Basement

Conclusion

Range hood selection can be difficult with the many options to choose from! But, with a little information from My Old House”Fix”, you’ll be on the right track in no time! All you need to start is a wish list, a plan, and the tasks you need your new range hood to accomplish.

Good Luck!

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Range Hood Installation: Logistics, Planning, and Execution

It’s time to remodel your kitchen, and you are planning everything around your range hood installation. You’re trying to make sure that everything works and integrates together, but there are so many options. Ugh, Right?

What do you do?

Stay tuned, and My Old House “Fix” will lay out a few range hood installation options, that will get your kitchen remodel planning and range hood installation back on the right track!

Kitchen Backsplash Design

Let’s get started with THREE easy steps!

 

1) Range Hood Installation – Logistics

Considerations

  • Under Cabinet Recirculating Range Hood (non-vented) – I don’t recommend this option, but if you must have a microwave over the range, then this is your only option. They are loud, only filters the air, and doesn’t remove heat or humidity .

Range Hood Installation

  • Standard Range Hood ( vented – louder motor in cabinet/kitchen) –  1) Usually the only option for a vented hood on an exterior wall.  2 ) Non-exterior wall – pipe/duct runs out of the top, and through upper cabinets to exterior wall exit.    

Range Hood Installation

  • Remote Blower Range Hood (vented – motor in attic or basement) –  1) Super-quiet operation vs a standard range hood.  2) Non-exterior wall application – pipe/duct can run in a dedicated wall cavity, out the back of the range hood box, and to the remote blower where it exists the house (basement or attic).

Range Hood Installation

  • Rear Duct Exit  – Used with  insert style range hood. If routing the duct through a wall cavity, make sure the hood box in the kitchen has a REAR duct exit option. NOTE: If the model you choose only has a TOP exit (shown), no worries, the top can be covered/sealed, and cut a new REAR exit in the box. A rear duct exit will save space and  allow you to have fully functioning cabinets above the hood (SEE VIDEO BELOW).

Range Hood Installation

  • Top Duct Exit – Used with freestanding/wall mount range hood, without cabinets above the hood.

Range Hood Installation

Size/Dimensions

You may not hit these guidelines every time, but try to get close. For a 36  inch range we had to go with a 34.5 inch wide hood, as the next size was 40 inches. A 40 inch hood would not work with our cabinet configuration.

  • Calculate fan size per your range –  400 cfm, 900 cfm, etc (see tutorial below)
  • The hood should be as wide as your stove (or close).
  • The hood should be at least half as deep as the cook top (or close).
  • Hood install height should be 30-36″ (ours is 35″) above the countertop / cooking surface. Too high and it wont air pull properly. Too low and the hood will be in your way. 34″ is a good average. 

Range Hood Installation

Additional Range Hood Resources

Range Hood Installation

  • You Tube video below

 

    

2) Range Hood Installation –  Planning

So after you select a range hood style (under cabinet, free-standing/wall/island, or cabinet insert/hidden), it’s time to plan the installation.

NOTE:  This installation plan assumes a complete kitchen remodel, and access to wall cavities.

NOTE:  The example given in this Blog will focus on the remote blower option, which is compatible with under cabinet, free-standing (except island), and insert style range hoods.

Location

One of the first things you need to think about while kitchen remodel planning may not be the stove or sink location – especially if you are planning any vented range hood model.

  • For an exterior OR interior wall, the range hood duct will need to exit between the wall studs.

  • So FIRST, make sure your plan lines up the range hood on the center of the identified wall cavity.
  • Everything else on the range hood wall – cabinets, stove, sink, etc, will fall into position based on this starting point!
  • Refer back to the Farmhouse Kitchen Remodel Blog – Planning and Product Selection for the detailed Ventilation Plan and layout!
  • If possible, I like to sketch out a rough layout on the existing walls to visualize the location of everything – cabinets, stove, range hood, electrical outlets, etc.
Kitchen Design Layout – Drawn/Taped on Walls

Final Layout for Remote Blower Range Hood

Plan the final layout of the range hood in relation to the range and surrounding cabinets.

Remote blower duct in wall cavity
  • Again, the range hood duct will need to exit the range hood between the wall studs, so identify the wall cavity that is closest to the center of where you want your range!
  • The center-line of this wall cavity is your starting reference point!

  • Everything else on the range hood wall – cabinets, stove, sink, etc, will fall into position based on this starting point!
  • Consider the final width of your upper cabinets on each side of the range hood to ensure proper sizes and fit.
  • Calculate the space and height of your cabinets above the range hood install height – especially if cabinets run to the ceiling.
  • Plan the rough placement of the range hood box and its electrical source(s).
Range Hood – 20A, non-GFCI
  • Consider a removable “service cover” that integrates into your cabinet design and range hood model/size (SEE VIDEO).
  • Know your range specifications.
Range Dimensional Requirements

 

 

   3) Range Hood Installation – Execution

Electrical Rough-In

Again, refer back to your master plan for rough electrical layout.

  • Refer back to the sample electrical plan used for the Farmhouse Kitchen Remodel.
  • Next to the hood (inside cabinet), rough-in the power, electrical, and remote control harness that will run from the range hood control panel to the remote blower.
Range hood wiring
Wire Rough-in Around Range Hood

Duct Rough-In

Time to run the duct inside the selected wall cavity.

  • Run range hood duct in wall cavity and through the floor/ceiling to the attic/basement.
Range Hood Installation
Seal Penetrations
  • Note the rough height where the duct will enter the back of the range hood box. Don’t go too high into your upper cabinets (insert-style hood only)
  • Again, I like to start with a sketch on the existing walls (note in the pic below) to ensure my plan on paper lines up with reality.  
  • Refer back to the Farmhouse Kitchen Blog for all the details on the HVAC rough-in.

Final Installation

The cabinets, backsplash, and final electrical are complete…

Farmhouse Kitchen Remodel
Farmhouse Kitchen Remodel – Cabinet ready for range hood
  • Now it’s time for final installation of the remote blower range hood assembly.
  • Install range hood in kitchen.
Circuits: Spare/Lights/Hood/Lights
Installed, collar to rear duct exit
  • Install the remote blower assembly in the basement or attic.
Duct Exits to Outside Just Above the Foundation

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Conclusion

Recirculating range hoods (non-vented) will “get you by”, while standard range hoods (vented) are a a step up, but result in louder operation. If pre-existing conditions allow, my pick for the ultimate range hood option is the remote blower range hood! The pros just outweigh the cons in the fact that it is vented and you can actually carry on a conversation while cooking and entertaining! Its simply the best of both worlds!

As always, I hope this information helps you along the way, so you end up with the best configured kitchen of your dreams!

 

For more Old House tips, info, and ideas…visit us over at www.myoldhousefix.com!    

 
  
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Why?

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