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Range Hoods Guide

What type of range hood I need to buy?
The most important role of kitchen ventilation is to remove all the greasy, smoky, steamy, gaseous byproducts that you don't want hanging around in your kitchen. When it comes to the choice of the right range hood, it usually depends on the layout and structure of your kitchen, your local building codes, and your own style preferences.
Many of our new, innovative range hood systems use carbon filters. The carbon filters provide better, cleaner ventilation and may eliminate the need for an air duct that leads outside. In addition, the durability and effectiveness of carbon filters is far superior to that of conventional filters.
One of many advantages of range hoods is the ease of assembly. Many of our range hoods have a telescopic chimney which allows more freedom for adjustments to the placement of the range hoods. Our new range hood chimneys are also easier to bypass through rough walls which makes installation faster and easier.

Why need a range hood?
There are many safety reasons for not trying to install or build range hoods systems. First of all, range hoods are in place to make sure that you direct dangerous fumes away from the rest of your home. They are also in place to help keep steam and smoke out of your kitchen as well as prevent smells from moving all around your home.
The continued presence of cooking fats, grease, steam and odors are an ongoing problem in every kitchen. Every year, an average of 4-1/2 liters (1 gallon) of cooking fat deposits itself on the cooler surfaces of walls, ceilings and cupboards. These deposits condense and cause discoloration and dulling of paint work.
Range hoods filter out the kitchen grease saving you hours of cleaning, extending the time between repainting and giving you a cleaner, fresher kitchen, as well as protecting and adding to the value of your home.

How powerful does my kitchen hood fan needs to be?

The power or air movement for range hoods is measured in CFM (cubic feet per minute). If you do a lot of heavy cooking that involves steam or strong odors, get a range hood with at least 350 CFM. For high-output gas ranges or cooktops, the minimum rate of 1 CFM of ventilation per 100 BTU (British thermal units) is recommended. For example, if your burner output is 45,000 BTUs, look for a range hood that provides 450 CFM to best clear the air.  Rules of thumb like this can get you started but the amount of heat generated by some cooking appliances throws a wrench into the works. Heat is measured in BTUs. There are additional calculations that need to be worked out when it comes to using professional-style ranges so be sure to consult with a professional kitchen designer before you commit to buying anything. Make-up air unit might be required. If your range is a professional type range, see below:

When do I need to buy a professional type hood (not commercial hood)?

If you plan to purchase high performance professional range 80000BTU or more, you would need to purchase and install one of our professional type hoods. Professional hoods are  usually larger hoods, with larger blower and higher CFM.  Small, regular type hood will not be able to keep up with the big professional type stove.  All professional stoves produce high heat and smoke and proper ventilation is essential, buy a hood that can remove the heat, steam, odor, smoke and grease produced by your cooking properly.

The distance from professional range should be not less than 30". Your duct size for any hood over professional type stove should be not smaller than 8" diameter and. Professional stoves require not less than 900CFM. Our most popular professional type hoods are Victory PS19 ( built-in hood) , Twister Max,  Prestige, Victory Tofino. Victory Tornado island.


Sizing Range hood for Gas Range:

The burners on a gas stove produce a lot more heat than those on an electric range, so a kitchen with a gas stove requires a larger capacity range hood vent fan. The first guideline for sizing a range hood depends on the output of your range as measured in British thermal units (BTUs). The recommendation by the Home Ventilating Institute (HVI) is to divide the BTU rating of your stove by 100 to arrive at a minimum guideline for CFM rating.

40,000 BTU gas stove ÷ 100 = 400 CFM range hood fan or higher

100,000 BTU gas stove ÷ 100 = 1000 CFM range hood fan or higher

Keep in mind for each elbow you would need 30CFM more, 40CFM for wall cap and 50CFM for roof cap.. So if you have 2 elbows + roof cap you would need to add 2 x 30+ 50 =110CFM to your calculation.


Range Hoods Types:
There are few general types of ready-to-install range hoods. Within this sub-topic we'll briefly examine each of the types while also discussing some optional features.

1.Island mount range hoods:
This type of range hood often accompanies an downdraft in which attachment to an exterior wall isn't an option. In many cases a retractable intake device is raised from the range or counter in order to pull air into exhaust ducts set below floor level. The ability to retract the range hoods and the sleek nature of many island range hoods models makes the island range hoods models more stylish than many under-cabinet models. Shown SV198Z2-I36/I42.
2.Wall mount range hoods:
Large, stylish, and professional in appearance, wall mount range hoods continue to gain popularity among homeowners. Often used on exterior walls when a cabinet isn't available, wall mount range hoods resemble an upside-down chimney in appearance. Stainless steel finishes are common on wall mount range hoods, and wall mount range hoods models are considered the most stylish of the three types. Shown SV198D-30/36.
3.Under-cabinet range hoods:
Traditional and usually the least expensive type of range hood, under-cabinet range hoods are, in fact, usually mounted under a wall cabinet and attached to an exterior wall. In many models, air is pulled out of the kitchen through an exhaust duct in the exterior wall. As a general rule, under-cabinet models aren't decorative or trendy.
4.Microwave oven / Range Hood combo:
Combo units save space, but they are not very efficient. We DO NOT recommend using this type hood, because most of the space inside the unit is taken by the microwave oven and very small space is left for the blower. The CFM levels are very low and not recommendable for GAS COOKTOPS. If you have a gas cooktop and long duct-work with many elbows, avoid this type.
5.Buying a Built-in/ Insert Blower type hood:
This type of hood you need if you do not want your fan to be visible (only the bottom plate is visible), and have a wood or metal hood with opening on the middle for the built-in exhaust fan. If you already have a wood hood, be sure to cover all exposed wood with metal liner for fire separation. If you will have the insert over a GAS COOKTOP, min 30" distance is required from any combustible material (check with your fire safety inspector). For complete Range Hood Installation will need insert blower and liner (Duct Size is determined by Blower chosen). Always purchase the insert and the liner first, before you start building the wood hood. It can be way easier for the cabinet company to make a perfect fit. Examples of built in inserts- BUF021, PS-Q1-30, BUF06 (check our BUILT-IN section)
Ducted or re-circulating (non-ducted):
When you install range hoods, they can be either ducted to the outside or set up to recirculate the air within the kitchen. Most of our range hoods can by converted to ductless range hoods. You will need to purchase additional charcoal filter set, or ductless kit available under 'ACCESSORIES'.
With the re-circulation option, most (not everything) of the grease and smells should be trapped by a special carbon filter. Moist air will still contribute to condensation problems and some smells may escape. However, with external ducting, the process of removing a lot of hot air quickly does mean the room gets a little cooler.

Size of range hoods:
Most of the time our customers use the same size range hood as their cooktop size for all wall mount range hoods ( for better proportion ) and one size bigger (6" bigger) for all island type fume hoods.
With two pots on your cooktop, most hoods will cope pretty well, and won't let steam escape at the sides. However, most models won't cope very well with four pots of simmering water, particularly if they're only 30-in wide. The bigger the range hood, the more effective it will be removing steam and odours. If you have the space, consider fitting a 36-in wide range hood over a 30-in cooktop. The extra width on each side will catch more steam.

Range hood filter types :
All range hoods have a filter to trap oil and grease from cooking. Most have reusable, metal mesh filters that will go in the dishwasher. Because the filters are quite large they are not easy to wash in a standard sink.

A. Aluminum (mesh) filters
Most common, Replaceable filters, usually cost aground 15$, you will find them under 'ACCESSORIES'. They are most of the time horizontal, collecting the oil on the surface, causing the color of the filter to change (to grey or brown color). Set your dishwasher to 'GENTLE' cycle when dish-washing this type filters.

B. Baffle filters
The BEST range hood filters on the market today, replaceable filters but in 99% keep their shiny look and good performance for many years. Usually made of the same 304 stainless steel material as the range hoods.
In many cases the baffle filters come with grease trap as well, and the filters are sloped towards the back, so any collected grease and moisture will drip in the grease collector at the back of the hood. Customers should clean the baffles and the grease chanel once a month, or every 30 hours of operation.

C. Charcoal (carbon) filters.
Needed only for ductless applications, non vented hoods.
Non replaceable filters, for one time use only. Must be changed every 4 months for proper range hood performance.

Number of range hoods fans:
Efficiency is not necessarily related to the number of fans. Some larger single-fan models can out-perform smaller two-fan models.


Two are the main factors, very important when quiet hood range is desired:

Mechanical noise ( motor noise) and Air moving through the duct noise.

The mechanical noise is almost the same if the RPM of the motor is the same. Higher RPM, higher noise. For quiet operation choose a blower with lot RPM and large impeller.

The size of the duct is very important. The larger the duct the less friction, less noise.
Purchase the hood with the larges blower such as Victory Twister MAX, PS19, Typhoon, Tofino, Prestige, largest duct  8 or 10" and you would get high performance and low noise.

A good range hood will provide enough light over the cook-top for you to see into the pots. Many models use only a single 40 watt bulb, which many cooks won't find adequate. Others use two bulbs, sometimes suffusing them with a perspex strip. Many of the more expensive range hoods provide much better light with halogen lamps with dimming options or suffused fluorescent bulbs.

Range hoods maintenance:
Range hoods are not maintenance-free. You need to remove and wash the filter, clean the body of the hood and occasionally change a light bulb. You should be able to perform most of these tasks easily.

Range hoods controls:
It's pretty standard for hoods to have their controls in an easy-access position on the front. However, some older models have sliding switches that are a little tricky to set in the right position. Touch controls are easier to use and all of our range hoods uses touch controls.

Range hoods Clearance from a Range/Stove:
Min 24" clear space must be present between the electrical stove and the range hood, 30" min clearance is required from gas stoves.

Backdraft Damper- What is that??
As air can travel out a ducted system, so can it travel in. To prevent this, most systems are equipped with backdraft flaps located at the fan box exhaust port. To stop cold air from coming in, check these flaps from time to time to make sure that they're not clogged with grease and stuck in position. The exhaust hood (outside vent) has either flaps or louvers. Make sure they are free of obstructions. Also make sure that ducting joints are sealed with special tape to prevent condensed water from dripping into closed spaces between the walls and damaging the wood structural members and insulation. Most of our hoods come with backdraft dampers included in the box, but if you already have external damper (attached to the cap outside the house), you don't need the use the one in the box. Two dampers will reduce the CFM levels

Range Hoods Maintenance:
Wipe the exterior and interior of the range hood regularly. When you need to give it a thorough scrub, use a solution of hot water, dish-washing detergent, and ammonia to cut the grease; wear rubber gloves. Clean metal mesh filters when they are dirty, and replace the filters on non-vented range hoods every six to nine months or as often as the manufacturer recommends. For more detailed instructions, please see Maintenance section of the User's Guide.

* Exterior cleaning:
Clean periodically with hot soapy water and clean cotton cloth. DO NOT use corrosive or abrasive detergent (e.g. Comet Power Scruv, EZ-Off oven cleaner), or steel wool/scoring pads, which will scratch and damage the stainless steel surface. For heavier soil use liquid degrease such as "Forumla 409" or "Fantastic" brand cleaner.
* Interior cleaning:
Warning! Be sure the unit is turned off before you clean it. Also avoid spraying cleaner directly onto the light bulb or light bulb socket. Clean the interior of the range hood with a standard household degreaser/cleaner.
* Fan motor care:
Most range hood fan motors don't need any maintenance. Over time, the motor and bearings may become stiff because of the constant heat, humidity, and grease to which they're exposed. Also over time, the blower wheel gets greasy and dirty, which can slow down the fan or cause vibration. Remove the wheel and clean it with a degreaser. Then, if the fan is still slow or if it vibrates, you need to replace the fan motor.
* Cleaning the grease trap/cup:
You can clean the grease trap/cup in your range hood by soaking it in a degreasing solution until all the grease is dissolved and then washing it with warm, soapy water.
* Charcoal filters:
If your unit contains charcoal filters, these will need to be replaced. They cannot be cleaned.

What is important to know before you install your range hood?

If you prefer more performance and reliability than look, read below:

Everyone is looking for the smallest, most powerful and quiet fan. Unfortunately,  it is not possible. To get a good suction and low noise, you will need 7 main things:

Powerful BIG blower, external or internal.

The bigger the blower, the more suction you will get out of it. In order to reduce the noise, the blower needs to rotate slow and/or be installed on the roof. The faster it goes, the more noise it creates. So.. slow rotating but big blower is ideal. External roof mount blower will reduce the noise, but is 2 times more expensive to install , because the roof or wall mount external blower needs to be rated for outdoor use and it is most of the time the same cost as the hood itself. We created hoods such us PS19 or Twister Max without blower inside for customers willing to install a roof mount blower. PSV requires 6” duct , Twister Max - 8” duct. The cost of a small blower, rated for outdoor use is in the range of 500-600 dollars. Keep in mind, there is extra installation cost as well.

Noise: In order the small blower ½ size of the big one to produce the same CFM as the big one, it needs to rotate twice as fast. If the big blower rotated with 900RPM, the small needs to rotate with 1800RPM. Remember, more RPM, more noise . To be exact, more than 2 times more noise as the noise goes up faster that the RPMs.. Avoid small blowers.

2.The size of the duct- the bigger, the better.

Regular size ducts for home kitchen ventilation used today are 6” diameter round or 8” diameter round. 4” is no longer used for kitchen ventilation. If you have 4” diameter duct and plan to use it for your kitchen ventilation, you will never doing to get a good suction and low noise levels. Just forget it.

Two things are important when it comes to suction except big blower pushing the air on one side of the system. Velocity of the air and the size of the duct. Reducing one of those factors, will reduce the suction. Many people under estimate the importance of the duct sizeEven if you have the most powerful blower on the market, reducing the duct size will create additional friction, more noise, vibration and low suction.

Let’s face it, you can’t push a lot of air through a small duct. For your kitchen ventilation use the biggest possible duct, the bigger the duct , the better. Any reduction , transition from big duct to small will reduce the suction dramatically. DO NOT UNDER-SIZE THE HOOD FAN DUCT if you want suction and low noise levels.  If you are serious about cooking you need min 8” diameter duct, 6” is not enough. If you want to have a blower that can produce real 900- 1000CFM , you will need min 8” round duct. Avoid bend , turns and long distances.

3. Big filtration surface exactly over the cooking space.

Don't forget how important the filtration size is. If you are serious about cooking avoid small and glass hoods. The glass hoods look good, but most of the time they have small single filter in the middle. Unfortunately this design is not the best for hood performance. You aren’t going to get a great suction if you have small size filter(s). The bigger the filtration space, the better. If you have a big blower but small filters size, you most likely will experience a whistling sound and reduction in the suction. The small filter will restrict the airflow, avoid it.

4. Hood shape and depth of the hood.

The deeper the hood, the better. For 24” deep stoves we recommend 24” or deeper  hoods. Oversizing is always recommendable. Our models PS01, PS09, PS35, PSM, are the deepest , they are 24” . The best hoods shape is the pyramid type hoods ( see our PSF, SV198F ,PSM, PS29 hoods ) Also good shapes are the hoods PS09,PS35,PS09 ( bid boxed hoods) .. Avoid glass hoods or rotated T shape hoods . They look good, but are not the best for heavy cooking. They might have good suction, but only in the middle, the suction at the ends is close to ZERO.

What is the model shape that we recommend for good suction – Our most popular models are Twister Max,PS29 and Victory PSF

5. Distance from the cooking surface.

Many customers want to install their range hood as high as possible. They want to avoid blocking their view if they have island type kitchen. That is great, but they must know that idealy the hood needs to be 30” above the cook-top. Any inch up will require 70CFM more. Installing the hood 40” ( 10” above the recommended distance) above the stove will require 700CFM or more… Do not be surprised if you do not have suffusion suction, after you decided to raise the hood up a bit..

6. Hood reliability - avoid hoods with too many parts, plastic parts.

Remember that the hoods are made by humans and have rotating elements,even the best ones can break after few years of use. What to consider before purchasing your range hood? The answer is - buy a hood with LESS PARTS. The less parts the hood has, the smaller the chances are the hood to break. Avoid hood with too many extras if you are after the most reliable hood. The range hoods can be complicated electrical appliances. Some come with one or two circuit boards, more difficult to fix if something goes wrong. Choose the one with mechanical switches, n circuit board, LED lights with GU10 light sockets ( don’t buy hoods with 12v lighting . They have transformers that can break ) If you want performance forget about touch sensitive displays and timers. Go with the simplest big blower hood you could find on the market. For that reason we developed our Twister Max model hood, the simplest and the most reliable hood we have ever built. There is no circuit board, no transformers. Just one solid 19 gauge steel body, 2 rotary mechanical switches and ones big 1000CFM bower. .

Buy hoods with real baffle filters and oil grease trap. Aluminum filters do not last long time.

7. Make sure the hood is positioned exactly over the cooking surface, not in-front, not at the back. In most cases the steam spreads at an angle of 22.5 deg from the edge of the cooking pan. 

The efficiency drops dramatically if the hood is not in the center. This is especially important for all island hoods, where there is no back wall to guide to steam up. 

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