There are many who consider the kitchen to be the heart of the home. After all, it is there where family recipes are passed down through the generations, where birthday cakes are baked and special anniversary dinners cooked, and it is there where children tell their parents about their days at school while feeding the dog scrap of food underneath the table.
Be it if you can barely cook pasta properly or if you are one of those super hosts who loves to prepare elaborate dinners for their guests, chances are that your kitchen can sometimes be filled with smoke, grease, and all sorts of oily smells that can not only pollute the air with unpleasant smells, but might also pose a great risk to your health.
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This is why getting an efficient wall mounted range hood is so crucial if you want to preserve the heart of your home. Capable of sucking all those vicious fumes from your kitchen thanks to a combination of a filtration and recirculating system, these appliances can also add some great aesthetic value to your kitchen.
But how do you know which unit is best for you and your home? With so many different models and so many different factors to consider, how can you be sure you are making the right choice and paying the appropriate price?
This guide seeks to help you understand all you need to know and all the questions you need to ask yourself in order to find the best wall mounted range hood for the heart of your home.
Buying Guide: What Factors Should You Consider?
Wall mounted range hoods can come with a variety of extra features to enhance their design, functionality, and add to the overall work flow of your kitchen. There are those who would consider some of these features must-haves in their range hoods, while others might be willing to forgo them altogether if it means getting their range hood for a cheaper price.
For this reason, it is important for you to familiarize yourself with what is considered standard in a wall mounted range hood and what is seen as an added bonus. Knowing this can help you discover which model best suits your kitchen and your budget.
Let’s start by taking a look at something that has become quite standards in most modern wall mounted range hoods models: Lights. From LED lights to fluorescent or halogen lights, your standard kitchen hood will most likely provide some sort of illumination for your cooking area. Lights may vary in color and amount, ranging from a front and back set-up to one where you have a light in each of the four corners of the appliance. Some models might even offer a dim nightlight setting or give you the option to change colors and intensity.
Do you prefer a lot of light, or would so much brightness hurt your eyes and detriment to your safety while you’re cooking? Would you rather have something that matches your current illumination set up, or do you not really care that much if there’s a bit of mismatch? Consider these questions before making your decision, and if needed, ask your roommates, your spouse, or your children what they think would work best for your home.
Another factor to consider is the range hood’s interface and how user-friendly it is. While there are some range hoods that are rather simple and straight-forward with their design – a few buttons with a little icons that are easy-to-understand and easy-to-operate; other models are incredibly sophisticated, with Bluetooth compatibility and digital touch controls. Other features you might find in a wall mounted range hood include clocks, timers, heat sensors, and more.
Are you a person who prefers push-button controls, or are you more comfortable with touchscreen? Or does it not make a difference for you? Consider which option would be more convenient for your daily use before making your decision.
Finally, take time to learn as much as you can about the different types of filters available with a wall mounted range hood, and what would best suit your home. Generally speaking, there are three different types of filters you can find with a range hood: a mesh filters (also known as cassette filters), a charcoal filters, and a baffle filters.
Mesh filters tend to be made of aluminum mesh strips and are typically incredibly effective in removing oil and grease particles from the air. They work better than the other two types, but as a result, you’d have to clean them more often than the typical every-two-week schedule.
By contrast, charcoal filters, which are honeycomb in structure, are not cleaned at all; rather, they are usually fully replaced after six months of use. These tend to only be suitable for ductless hoods, though.
Lastly we have the baffle filters, which can be made of either steel or aluminum frames; incredibly durable, if made of stainless steel, these filters tend to also be dishwasher safe for easy cleaning.
As you can see, there are a lot of factors to consider before you swipe your card and make such a crucial purchase for your home. Look at your appliances and your current set-up, think about what would be more convenient for you and those who would be cooking in your kitchen, and use that information to narrow down your options.
Expert Tips: Questions to Answer Before Making Your Decision
All of that being said, perhaps the most important thing you should look at when finding the best wall mounted range hood for your home is the appliance’s motor. Kitchen hoods gather all types of grease, dusty, and dirt particles, and it is their job to capture them in their filter in order to maintain a pleasant living environment for you, your family, and your guests. Finding a range hood with a powerful motor that is also quiet, then, is of incredible importance.
Airflow in these units are typically measured in CFM (cubic feet per minute) and you can expect your average kitchen hood to operate at a daily 350 CFM. However, keep in mind that the size and type of the unit installed might affect that number. A higher number means a higher airflow, which also typically equates to louder noise levels.
The Home Ventilating Institute, responsible for certifying numerous residential ventilating products sold in North America, recommends for wall mounted range hoods to have a motor of at least 100 CFM.
Think about your kitchen space, your cooking area, your living arrangement, and the hours you’d be using your range hood. Smaller kitchens where you’re just cooking for you and your family do not require a high level of airflow, allowing you to get away with a quieter model. It might also be worth looking to see how many fan speeds are available in the unit you’re considering purchasing; if there are multiple speed levels and you’re someone who enjoys entertaining a big number of guests on multiple occasions throughout the year, having a hood with an option for a more powerful airflow might be well-worth the investment.
Did You Know? Range Hoods Must be Cleaned Every Two Weeks
As mentioned a few times already in this guide, a wall mounted range hood’s job is to clean out polluted air from your kitchen. In order for this work properly, it is important that the filter is always as clean as possible.
The amount of times you might have to clean or replace your filter will vary depending on not just the type of filter your kitchen hood uses, but also how often you use it and what type of food you usually cook. Typically, it is recommended for you to clean the filter every two weeks, though more powerful ones might require that to be done on a weekly basis.
A filter with a stainless steel frame is typically dishwasher safe, making it easier to clean. If possible, try looking into this option.
If you’re someone who might forget to do this chore, set a reminder on your phone, so you never miss a cleaning date and your wall mounted range hood can always be functioning as well as possible.
Quotes: How Much Does a Wall Mounted Range Hood Costs?
The typical price range for a good quality wall mounted range hood can vary from anywhere between $200 to $600, with some models falling far below or far above that spectrum.
It is important, however, to remember that in addition to the appliance’s regular cost, you might also need to budget in some extra money for the installation process. If you do not feel you can install a kitchen hood properly and safely, than it is wise to factor in those costs when calculating your ideal price range.
So what can you expect to get for your budget? Let’s take a look.
On the inexpensive side of the spectrum we have those range hoods that sit at the $200 mark. These tend to have very basic functions and will typically have aluminum filters. If you live by yourself or do not make fry food very often, this might be a good investment for it will not only help you keep your kitchen’s air nice and clean, but it will also add value to your home without you having to spend a lot of money.
Then, we have those models that go from slightly above $200 to $350. These hoods tend to have extra features and settings and sometimes might even come with beautiful glass visors and nice stainless steel filters. They are perfect for someone looking to add some aesthetic value to their kitchen and wanting to have some of those nice extra features without breaking the bank.
Then we have the upper end of the spectrum, going from $350 to about $600, though some fancier models can go for as much as $1,000. Larger in size, with quieter options and more fan speeds, motion sensor controls, heat sensors, these tend to be better suited for professional kitchens. If you are someone who really enjoys cooking elaborate meals with tons of fried food and have plenty of money to invest, this might be a great choice.
If you’re kitchen ceilings are higher than normal, extension kits might be an extra cost you will also have to factor into your budget. Make sure that whatever model you decide upon has such a feature available to make sure you the kitchen hood and the extension are compatible.
Tips: Position Your Range Hood Just Right
Think carefully about the positioning of your wall mounted range hood, for it can greatly impact its performance and ability to properly clear smoke and grease smells from your kitchen. If you position it too low, it might be a serious hazard, while placing it too high would make it incredibly inefficient.
So what is the perfect position to for your wall mount range hood? Well, after ensuring that the chimney is of a length suitable to your kitchen ceiling, it is recommended for there to be at least 20 inches and no more than 25 inches of space between the surface of your cooking area and the lower side of the kitchen hood. According to experts, this is the ideal positioning to get the most out of your appliance.
Still, your best safest option would be to have a specialist perform the installation, for they will be able to see your kitchen layout in person and give a better judgment based on the space you have available and any local codes that must be followed.
Typically mounted between walls and cabinets, wall mounted range hoods are the ideal way to rid your kitchen of any bad odors, smoky air, and other impurities that might be hazardous to your health. But finding the right one that suits both your kitchen and your lifestyle can be tough.
It is important to know what is considered a standard feature in one of these appliances and what is considered to be an extra bonus; most wall mounted range hoods come equipped with small lights to illuminate you cooking area, for example, but not all of them will have features such as Bluetooth compatibility and heat sensors.
Decide what is essential to you and what you can live without; this will help you narrow down your choices.
Remember that the more powerful the motor, the more noise the appliance will make when operating. Consider your usual diet; do you eat a lot of greasy food? Do you like to fry things? Are you going to be using the range hood often, or just once in a while? Answering these questions will help you get a better sense of what motor would be best for you.
Knowing what your filter options are is another crucial thing to understand, as that will affect how often you have to clean the unit. It is crucial to keep the filters properly clean, after all, if you want it to perform its duties to the best of its capabilities.
Be it whether you have a budget of $200 or one of a $1,000, we hope this guide was able to help you understand this crucial appliance so that you can find the best wall mounted range hood for you and your kitchen.