Rangehood Buying Guide
1. What are rangehoods?
Rangehoods are basically exhaust fans for your kitchen. They are designed to remove smoke, steam and fumes away from your kitchen while you cook. This is important to ensure your kitchen is not damaged as the moisture over time will damage your cabinetry. It also ensures your cooking space is healthier to work in by removing bad odours and fumes.
Fixed rangehoods are the most popular. They are fixed in your kitchen and cover the whole cooking area. They don’t extend out and therefore tend to have larger filters.
Slide out rangehoods as the name suggests slides out over the cooking area and then slide back in when not in use. These are typically lower in suction power than other types.
Canopy rangehoods are increasing in popularity. They are mounted on the wall or over a kitchen island. They typically have a great design and often offer the most suction power. They also tend to look the nicest, but are the most expensive.
3. Size/ Form Factor
You need to measure the space you have available for your rangehood, in particular if you are replacing an existing. The size will also tend to be the same as the oven it covers. The common sizes are 60cm and 90cm.
4. Suction Power
The power of a rangehood is measured in m3 / hr. This means metres cubed per hour. It refers to the amount of air the rangehood can extract per hour. The higher the number the stronger and more powerful that unit it. Typically canopy rangehoods are the most powerful with slide-out rangehoods being the weakest. Anything over 600m3/hr is considered powerful.
There are two main types of ducting you will see around the market;
These are the best type of ducting as they literally duct the smoke and fumes outside via duct work. Obviously due to the duct work require are harder to install but a much better option.
If the ducted option is not possible the other option is re-circulating. As the name suggests these rangehoods will move the smoke and fumes through a filter to clean it as much as possible then push that air back into the kitchen.
Filters can be extremely important, in particular if you are using a re-circulating rangehood. Rangehoods often come with aluminium or charcoal filters. The aluminium filters need to be washed every few months and the charcoal ones need to be replaced just as often, possibly even more depending on how often you cook greasy foods.
Make sure your rangehood has enough lights to view your cooking area easily. It seems like a no brainer, but it can make for an uncomfortable cooking experience if overlooked.
Most rangehoods will have a noise rating. Basically the lower the noise rating the better. The rating will often be in dB, meaning decibel. Keep the noise level in mind if you tend to cook near where you watch TV as these can get quite loud.
If possible, ducting options are better as they duct the air outside. You will need a professional to prepare ducting to go from your rangehood to outside. Also ensure you get a rangehood that covers the entire cooking area, you should be able to just match the size of your rangehood with your oven.