Comparing Kitchen Ventilation Systems

Hoods and ventilation systems ideally should eliminate odors and humidity. Higher end units push odors and humidity outdoors. Inexpensive models use a filter to absorb grease and odors. Before purchasing a ventilation system, homeowners should consider the size and location of the kitchen. The filters need to be regularly changed.

Under Cabinet and Chimney Vent Hoods

Under cabinet vent hoods are the most economical option. Grease and odors are absorbed into replaceable filters. If there is enough open space in the kitchen, homeowners can choose a wall mounted chimney. An island chimney hood has a canopy, and it can be mounted over a kitchen island.

A Downdraft Vent

A downdraft vent maximizes space in the kitchen. In addition to making kitchens more spacious, it is easier to keep clean. Since a downdraft hood is noisy, it can be difficult to hear someone standing near the range.

Electronic and Manuel Ventilation Systems

Ventilation hoods come in many brands, and the price usually depends on noise levels. Loud ventilation systems are inexpensive. Also, units with digital controls are more expensive. The most expensive ventilation hoods have sensors that detect heat. Electronic ventilation systems can be programmed to automatically turn on and off.

Ducted vs. Ductless Systems

Ducted range hoods keep the air inside the kitchen fresh, but holes might need to be drilled into the walls and ceiling to install the unit. Renters should consult with management before installing a ducted ventilation system. Ductless units do not require any drilling, and a ductless unit is appropriate for apartment buildings. Kitchens that are not readily equipped for a ducted ventilation system can still be renovated for a ducted ventilation system.

After several months of use, the filters in a ductless system will need to be cleaned. If the filters are not cleaned or replaced, the buildup of debris will reduce the unit’s efficiency. The components might fall apart if a regular maintenance schedule is not followed. The filter should be cleaned with soap and water every three months. Ducted hoods only need to be cleaned twice a year.