3 Tips to Help You Find the Best Range Hood for Your Kitchen

October 10, 2022

 

Is your kitchen due for a remodel? You're not alone as Americans spent more than $419 billion on home improvements in 2020. There’s no time like the present to start thinking about how you can get the most out of your kitchen, but many homeowners overlook the advantages that a new range hood can bring. Keep reading to find out what you need to know about buying the best range hood for your kitchen.

 

1. Choose a Material and Color

There are several materials that range hoods can be made from, all with their respective pros and cons. Some are geared toward a rustic or classic feel such as wood or an elegant style like stainless steel. But you’ll need to think about more than how it looks with the rest of your kitchen.

Stainless steel for example is timelessly modern and pairs well with nearly any other color and style in your kitchen. And it’s super affordable as well, making it a great investment for a sleek look.

Copper range hoods are advantageous primarily because of their durability as well, but also because they’re one of the most beautiful options and are easy to clean to boot. Not only will they stand the test of time against everyday stains, scratches, and dents, but as copper ages, it changes color, which is called the patina effect.

 

2. Consider the Location

Although you might think of a classic undercabinet or wall-mounted chimney hood when you think about range hoods, those aren’t the only options. There are also island and downdraft hoods that are designed to fit a variety of kitchen spaces.

To go back over the types, undercabinet hoods are mounted underneath a cabinet attached to the wall above the stovetop. There are also microwave hood combinations, which allow you to have a hood under your microwave if it’s mounted above the range top. However, these tend to be less powerful than other types.

Wall-mounted is another common type, and some have a chimney or flue that expels air out of the house. Island range hoods are similar, in that they’re also chimney hoods, however, they hang from the ceiling instead. They should also be wider than the cooktop since there aren’t cabinets to help funnel the air into it.

Downdraft hoods are useful in a space where you don't want the hood to be visible at all times, as they fit within the cooktop and can be pulled up as necessary.

 

3. Make Sure It’s Functional

Now that you’ve read about the options for location and material, the last thing is to make sure the type of hood you want will work well in your kitchen. Ventilation is one of the most important aspects of how your range hood works. But there’s more than one type of ventilation design that range hoods can have. First, there are ducted hoods, which channel air away and out of the home, and these are usually mounted to an exterior wall to shorten the amount of ducting needed.

Secondly, there are ductless and non-vented systems, which filter and clean the air from the kitchen and then circulate it back into the space, rather than expelling it from the home. While these are less efficient and require more maintenance than ducted hoods, they’re useful in apartments and other spaces where it’s not possible to duct to the outside.

Another consideration should be the power output of the hood. The power and distance from the range to the hood will correlate directly to the amount of air your hood will need to blow to keep the air in your kitchen clean and get rid of odors. As a general rule, an island or wall-mounted hood should be, at a minimum, 30 inches above the range, and undercabinet mounts should be installed at 24 inches.

In addition, you should think about other features for convenience. These include exhaust timers, fan speeds, and storage options. Exhaust timers shut the hood off automatically in case you forget or like to leave it running to take care of lingering smells, which is especially useful for busy families or after cooking spicy meals.

A hood needs at least two fan speeds, a high speed to use during cooking and a low speed for circulating air afterward. Higher-end hoods tend to have more for a more customized experience. Lastly, if your kitchen lacks storage space or you like to have your most-used cooking utensils on hand, a hood with railing and/or shelving might be the best choice for you.

 

Reinvent Your Kitchen

Your kitchen is a space where you come together with family, but that doesn't mean it can't also look great. Upgrading to a stylish new range hood can not only switch up the look of your kitchen but reimagine the way you cook. Knowing how to choose the right material, mount, and function for your space will allow you to get the most out of your kitchen.

 

 

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