At a Glance
Take a moment to imagine the heat and smoke out of your bbq grill.
Now remove some of the smoke and add more heat. That is the average output of a professional range.
Since you last purchased a range, burners have steadily increased from a maximum 15,000 BTU (British Thermal Units) in 1990 to 30,000 BTU today.
Hestan has a 30,000 BTU burner, BlueStar has a 25,000 BTU burner, and SKS (Signature Kitchen Suite) has a 23,000 BTU burner.
So, you want to vent all that heat, smoke, and grease outside properly.
Yet you see some flagrantly bad practices on Houzz and other home improvement sites.
In this article, you will learn the highest output range hoods and best ventilation practices.
Then I will show you what doesn't work, so you aren't tempted to try it in your new kitchen design.
Ventilation is so overlooked yet incredibly important. Getting it wrong often means starting over with a new kitchen design.
First, let's start with the importance of proper ventilation.Short on time? Get our free Ventilation Buying Guide
The Importance of Ventilation
In researching this topic for our webinars, podcasts, and articles, you begin to see some strange acronyms associated with the air you breathe in your home.
Namely IAP, IAQ, and SBS.
Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) refers to the quality of air inside your home and measures how safe it is for breathing.
Indoor Air Pollution (IAP) is the excess of pollutants that exist indoors.
Exposure to indoor air pollutants whether repeatedly or once can directly affect your overall health status.
In cases where a home or building is linked to occupants experiencing "acute health and comfort effects that appear to be linked to time spent in a building" is known as Sick Building Syndrome (SBS), as reported by the EPA, the United States Environmental Protection Agency.
All these problems have been tied in part to inadequate ventilation. In fact, in one study, bad ventilation was ahead of smoking as a probable cause.
Just remember the grill analogy in the beginning because that heat cannot escape without a decent vent.
So, you are in the right place. You will learn the right range hoods to choose for your professional range, but first, let's figure out how to correctly ventilate your kitchen.
Unfortunately, you can still pick the right ventilation hood yet have inadequate ventilation.
How to Ventilate Your Professional Range
Ventilation is divided into equal parts.
CFM: CFM stands for cubic feet per minute. How many cubes of airflow through the vent in one minute? CFMS in range hoods can range from 250 to 1500.
1500 cubes of air are typically in a small room.
Whether you buy a grill, griddle or wok, the CFMs should be 600 for a 30-inch to 1500 for a 48-inch or 60-inch range.
Capture: Smoke is not expelled immediately after reaching your vent.
Capture is where people tend to make mistakes. A 1500 CFM 21-inch depth hood will still not work on the front burners because the smoke will bypass the hood
Smoke, heat, and grease are captured, then vented. It's why you see huge hoods in the middle of restaurant kitchens.
So, you want a hood at least 24-27inches deep, 18 tall, and the width of your stove. If on an island, add 6 inches so smoke can be effectively chambered
Duct Run: You want your duct run simple. Straight up is good because it follows gravity. Smoke is going up anyway. Straight back on a wall works as well. Please resist the urge to add long runs and transitions as they cut effectiveness
Duct Size: Duct size was more of an issue years ago when contractors were using dryer ducting. Typically, 8-10 rounds are adequate for any vent.
How Not to Ventilate Your Professional Range
It is easy to make a mistake with ventilation. Not having the right capture, a long run with multiple elbows is asking for problems.
We have a product that meets all the criteria - the downdraft.
Downdrafts have no capture, long runs with at least one transition.
So don't do this.
Best Ventilation Hoods for Professional Ranges
If you are following the rules, the range hood choice is easy. You want an 18-inch tall, 24-27-inch-deep hood with the same width as your range.
You also want a reliable option. It is a harder task with many no-name brands on the market. Just make sure the components are good.
Always look at all the components before you buy a range hood.
Below are the best ventilation hoods for the professional range.
BEST By Broan WP28M36SB With Up to 1500 CFM - $1,378
The blower is sold separately, which is great because they have 13 different blower options but not great because it is an additional expense.
It's designed for someone who wants to minimize sound by going a route other than an internal blower. Their P3, P6, and P12 blowers and external blowers are great options.
With a maximum of 1500 CFM, this range hood pairs well with larger professional ranges.
- Internal or external blower systems sold separately
- Quiet operation at normal setting at 0.8 Sones
- Choice of 13 different blowers to suit your installation (sold separately)
- Infinite Speed Control
- Aluminum mesh and stainless-steel low-profile baffle filters
- Heat Sentry™
- Code Ready™ Technology (CRT)
BlueStar BS-PL36240 TS Up to 1400 CFM - $1,995
The BlueStar range hood comes with the blower. At 1400 CFM, it's a good choice for high-heat cooking.
It offers customization with over 1000 colors and ten trims to choose from. It's perfect if you're interested in a customized range and range hood.
They can even match a nail polish color to a hood.
- Commercial grade stainless steel construction
- Welded seamless corners
- Dishwasher safe stainless steel baffles
- 3-speed blower/variable light control
- Reversible top or rear exhaust
- 12" duct cover available (sold separately)
- Remote and Inline fans are available
- 600 CFM internal fan included
- Duct Free kit available (sold separately)
Yale Custom Hood Series RH70230BS With Up to 1200 CFM - $1,499
This professional range hood comes with an internal blower. Internal blowers are easier to service than external ones mounted on either the roof or the side of the house.
At 1200 CFM, this range hood is powerful. It's great for cooks who love cooking with high heat for searing and wok cooking.
However, this hood requires Make-Up Air.
In the state of Massachusetts, anything over 400 CFM requires Make-Up Air.
This hood can be dialed down to 590 CFM or 390 CFM to meet the code.
Once it is dialed down, it cannot go past what you have set it to.
Still, you really would not want to dial it down to 390 CFM if it is going over a 36-inch pro cooktop anyways.
This is important to ensure good IAQ or Internal Air Quality.
- 5-Year Warranty
- 1,200 CFM Internal Blower
- 9 Max Sones
- Stainless Steel
- Professional Baffle Filter (2)
- Electronic Controls
- No Recirculating Option
- Dual Level Lighting
- 3-Speed Levels
- Halogen Lights
Yale Custom Hood Series RH01136AS With Up to 1200 CFM - $1,449
This Chimney hood comes with LED lighting. Its style is best for customers who love the traditional chimney style with a robust professional appearance.
For great value, the Yale RH01136AS includes an internal blower and a 5-year warranty.
Zephyr or Broan makes most hoods, yet only 20% of hoods come with the blower.
Like the range hood above, it has a lot of power at 1200 CFM but can be dialed down to 390 to meet the code. Perfect for high-output burners.
- 5 Year Warranty
- 1,200 CFM Internal Blower
- 9 Max Sones
- Capacitive Touch Controls
- Hybrid Baffle Filter
- 5 Minute Delay-Off
- No Recirculating Option
- 9W LED Strip
- 3 Speed Levels
Vent-A-Hood PRH18-M36 SS With Up to 1035 CFM - $1,306
The blower is sold separately with two different options, like a single blower or dual blower for extra power.
It is good from a service standpoint that they are both internal blowers. It is much harder to service an inline or external blower that may be placed somewhere on the roof.
The flue or duct covers are required for installation but are sold separately. Flue or duct covers only ventilate vertically.
This hood caters to different ceiling heights, but it requires an additional accessory that can be a bit pricey. Some other manufacturers make pro chimney hoods for a similar look at half the price.
- Available with single or dual 600 CFM blowers (sold separately)
- Industrial grade SS baffle filters
- Four-speed blowers
- 50W, 2 level Halogen lighting
- One year warranty
How to Choose a Ventilation Hood
You can buy a hood in several ways. A hood can be purchased with the blower inside, usually up to 1200 CFM.
You can also buy the hood as a shell and buy the blower separately from 600 to 1500 CFM.
Blowers can be placed inside the hood, outside your home, or inline in the duct.
I like the blower inside because it's easier to fix. You must allow access to an inline blower in case of repair.
Outside it is quieter, but you still hear the rush of air. It's not that good-looking, and it's harder to repair in the winter.
What CFM Should You Buy?
That depends on how you cook. You want a higher CFM hood if you like to grill, griddle, wok, or stir fry.
Look for a minimum of 900-1200 CFM for a 36-inch range and 1200-1500 CFM for a 48 or 60-inch range.
Buying the right ventilation will improve the indoor quality of your home. Just remember to buy the right capture, CFM, and plan your duct accordingly.
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