How to Choose a Range Hood

Written by: Erica Spangler
Design Specialist
(800) 375-3403

When you cook food on the stove, it releases microscopic heat, food, grease, moisture, and dirt particles into the air. A range hood will exhaust these potentially hazardous impurities out of the air, and here’s what to know when finding one.

Range Hood Types


  • Space-saving hoods that are the most common type in homes
  • Placed beneath the cabinet(s) and over the stovetop
  • Vented through the ceiling or wall and then outdoors
Shop Under-cabinet Range Hoods


  • Mounts to wall with ducting exposed
  • Often taller and have a more stylish and professional appearance
  • Vented through the ceiling or wall and then outdoors
Shop Wall-mount Range Hoods


  • Hang from the ceiling and placed over a stovetop on a kitchen island
  • Fantastic visual appeal with a wide range of contemporary looks
  • Vented through the ceiling and then outdoors
Shop Island Range Hoods

Hood Inserts

  • Least common type
  • Can sit alone in a ceiling or be paired up with a custom range hood
  • Can provide a truly unique look in the kitchen
Shop Range Hood Inserts


Range hoods are measured by “nominal width,” which is the width of any unit rounded to the nearest “industry standard” size. For example, if the actual measurement of a range hood were 35 ¾ inches wide, it would show a nominal width of 36 inches.

Ducted versus Ductless


  • Exhausts air outdoors through ducts
  • Exhausts particles, as well as heat
  • Filters don’t have to be replaced as often


  • Filters collect impurities
  • Does NOT collect heat
  • Filters must be replaced about every six months

Finish options

Matching your range hood finish to your other appliances keeps your kitchen design fluid.


Charcoal Filters

  • Attracts impurities in the air and remove them completely
  • Replace every three to six months
Shop Charcoal Filter Range Hoods

Mesh Filters

  • Netting catches, removes impurities
  • Aluminum or stainless steel construction
  • Run through dishwasher about once a month
Shop Mesh Filter Range Hoods

Baffle Filters

  • Stainless steel construction
  • Sits at optimal angle to trap impurities
  • Clean using soap and water or run through the dishwasher
Baffle Filter Range Hoods

Cup Filters

  • Collects grease and oil, and are removable
  • Not necessary to replace
  • Empty as they fill up
Cup filter range hoods

Other Considerations


  • Range hoods most often come with lighting
  • Halogen is the most preferred type of light
  • This can add a layer of kitchen lighting

Sones and CFM


  • Volume of the range hood fan
  • Higher the sones, the louder the fan
  • Ex: a fridge is 1 sone
  • Most feature a quiet, lower power setting

CFM (Cubic Feet Per Minute)

  • Amount of air exhausted in one minute
  • Higher the number, the more air is vented
  • A higher CFM rating will also have more sones
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