Which range hoods are best?
Anyone who cooks knows the annoying screech of the smoke detector when the kitchen fills with smoke that rises to the ceiling. Some people open windows, others turn on fans and still others simply take the batteries out of the smoke detector.
Try installing a range hood instead. It filters the air to remove smoke and odor and vents them away safely. If you are looking for a range hood that automatically turns on the fan and light when the burners come on, take a good look at the Samsung Stainless Steel 30 Inch Under Cabinet Hood.
What to know before you buy a range hood
All range hoods are made to remove smoke, grease and cooking fumes from the air in your kitchen and home. The type and style best for you depends on how your kitchen is laid out and what appearance you prefer.
Ducted vs ductless range hoods
Ducted range hoods pipe the fumes and odors to the outside of the home through a venting system. Ductless range hoods pull the heat, smoke and odors away from the cooking surface, filter it and push clean air back into the kitchen. The downside is the smoke and odors never leave.
Under-cabinet range hoods
Under-cabinet range hoods mount to the underside of cabinets above your range. This type of range hood is built to duct smoke and odors to the outside. You will need enough space between the cooking surface and the bottom of your kitchen to keep the hood well above the stove top.
Downdraft range hoods
Downdraft range hoods are purpose-built for installation over kitchen islands. They push smoke and odors to the floor where ducting is used to take everything outside the home. Downdraft range hoods are not as effective as other configurations.
Wall-chimney range hoods
Wall-chimney range hoods are the glamor hoods that you see in the finest kitchens. They are meant to stand out as design elements and not to blend in with their surroundings. Wall-chimney range hoods take up a lot of space that could be otherwise used for over-the-stove cabinets or microwave ovens.
To learn even more about range hoods, take a look at the full range hood buying guide from Best Reviews.
What to look for in a quality range hood
You want a range hood that covers as much of the cooking area as possible. For maximum efficiency, choose a range hood that is wider than your cooktop.
One measurement of the efficiency of a range hood is how many cubic feet of air it can move in one minute. When it comes to CFM, the bigger the number, the more air the range hood takes in, filters and exhausts.
Fan speed is closely tied to CFM because it is the fan that does most of the work. Pricier models have as many as six fan speeds. Some say that is overkill and that a range hood with one high speed and one low speed is adequate for most applications.
How much you can expect to spend on a range hood
Prices vary widely according to style, CFM and add ons like lighting and smart technology. You will find range hoods available for anywhere from $40-$7,000. Many well-made range hoods can be found for around $1,000.
Range hood FAQ
Why should I buy a ductless range hood that just pushes air around instead of removing it?
A. Ducted range hoods are more effective, but not everyone has existing ductwork to tie into and installing ductwork from your stove to outside can be expensive. Yes, ductless hoods push the air around, but only after they filter it, which removes most of the smoke, grease and odors from the air.
Do all range hoods need to be professionally installed?
A. Unless you are a skilled DIYer, professional installation can save you many headaches.
What’s the best range hood to buy?
Top range hood
Samsung Stainless Steel 30 Inch Under Cabinet Range Hood
What you need to know: A range hood that strikes a nice balance between sleek good looks, optimum functionality and convenience.
What you’ll love: When the stove top burners come on, this Bluetooth connection on this range hood automatically turns on the four speed fan and bright LED light. The on-hood controls include a digital clock and timer. This unit ventilates 390 CFM, and you can control this Wifi-connected range hood from your smartphone.
What you should consider: Some people are disappointed this model does not have a charcoal filter.
Where to buy: Sold by Home Depot
Top range hood for the money
Broan-NuTone Stainless Steel Energy Star Certified Range Hood BCSEK130SS
What you need to know: The Broan Captur System combines advanced blower design with new filter technology.
What you’ll love: This 250 CFM range hood is designed with smooth flow technology that is quiet and efficient. This unit removes 97% of smoke and odor to protect your home and family from airborne cooking pollutants. This range hood comes in 24 inch, 30 inch and 36 in widths in four different color finishes. DIYers using the included EZ1 system can install this range hood in half the time of comparable range hoods.
What you should consider: Only one level of brightness is available and no filters are included.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
FOTILE 30 Inch Side Draft Range Hood
What you need to know: This 30 inch range hood has a beautifully designed tempered glass surface and powerful, quiet dual motors.
What you’ll love: The touch screen control of this 18 inch deep range hood has three speeds that are suitable for all cooking styles and screen lock and time delay functions. The special design automatically opens to a 90 degree angle to cover 6 square feet of range space. The side draft technology achieves 92% separation of grease and fumes, and the grease tray and oil filter are easy to remove. This unit has a 380 CFM rating.
What you should consider: The fan is a bit noisy and the airflow could be stronger.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
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David Allan Van writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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