The power of a range hood is measured in cubic feet per minute (CFM). This number represents the volume of air that the range hood can exhaust each minute when working at full intensity. But how can you tell whether you need a 350, 580or 1160 CFM model? Here are some pointers to help you make the right choice.

1. The Minimum Power of Your Range Hood Depends on Your Cooking Surface.

In the case of an electric range or cooking plate, the width of your appliance acts as the starting point. Multiply this measurement by ten to know the minimum amount of CFM you need. For example, for a standard 30″ range, a hood with at least 300 CFM of power may be enough.

Gas appliances emit much more heat and smoke than their electric counterparts and therefore require a more efficient hood. Add up the total power (in BTU) of each burner, then divide by 100. For example, a gas range wit h five burners of 18,000, 12,000, 10,000, 9,500 and 5,000 BTU totals 54,500 BTU and therefore requires a range hood of at least 545 CFM.

2. Your Kitchen’s Size May Influence the Needed Power of Your Range Hood .

In a large kitchen, a more powerful kitchen hood is need to prevent odours and dirt from spreading into the air. To determine if you need a more powerful model, first calculate the volume of your kitchen by multiplying its width, length and height. For example, a 12′ x 20′ kitchen with 10′ ceilings has a total of 2,400 cu. ft. of air. In ventilation, a range hood is required to achieve 10 to 12 air changes every hour to ensure a healthy, smoke – free environment. This means one air change every five to six minutes. Divide the air volume of your kitchen by five; if this number is greater than your original calculation (depending on the type of appliance), use this new measurement instead.

According to the above example, a kitchen with an air volume of 2,400 cu. ft . requires 480 CFM of power. The 545 CFM hood chosen for the gas range is more than enough. However, the 300 CFM hood proposed for the 30″ electric range may not perform so well in such a large room.

3. Adjust According to Your Vent .

The exhaust vent of your range hood expels the soiled air outside your property. In the case of new construction , it should be as short and direct as possible, with minimal bends. If you’re replacing your range hood with a new model and don’t want to tamper with the existing vent, you should take into consideration any possible defects. For each foot of length, add 1 CFM to compensate for power loss.

For each bend, add 25 CFM to your requirements. For example, suppose you ’ re installing a new range hood for a 30″ electric range, and would need a 300 CFM model. However, the existing exhaust duct features two bends (2 x 25 CFM) and is 18 feet long (18 x 1 CFM). Therefore, you need a hood with at least 368 CFM to achieve satisf actory performance. Vents with a diameter of 6″ are usually fine for range hoods of 600 CFM and below. Above this size, wider ducts are recommended to allow high – performance models to operate at full capacity.

Should You Choose a Superior Range Hood?

When in doubt, it’s better to install a range hood that is too powerful than one that’s not powerful enough ! Aroua range hoods provide a wide range of speeds, allowing you to adjust the ir performance to suit your needs. This way you avoid increasing your electricity bill by expelling too much air unnecessarily – but you can still rely on a powerful appliance when steaming, deep – frying or otherwise cooking foods that generate a lot of smoke.