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When you think of kitchen appliances, a range hood probably isn’t the first thing that comes to mind. That doesn’t mean it’s less important than the rest. In fact, a range hood is one of those things that you’ll definitely miss when it’s not there or not working.
Given its function, this is an appliance that deserves some careful consideration. There are several types and sizes, and choosing the right one for your needs isn’t always easy. Fortunately for you, we’re going to make things easier with the reviews and recommendations in this article.
Read on to learn more about range hoods and find the best one for your purposes.
Our Top Choices (if you only have a minute)
In a hurry? No problem. Follow the links below to our top choices in these categories:
Our Top Pick for Your Money: Awoco Split Design
for Gas Stoves: Golden Vantage GV-Z01-30
Wall mounted: Mueller Deluxe 36”
Recirculating Hood: Kobe CHX3830SQBD-3 Brillia
Under $1000: Fotile JQG7501
Under $500: Firebird FBTK-B306H-90
Under $300: BV Under-cabinet
Under $200: Firebird 36” wall-mount
How to Choose The Correct Model For Your Needs
Before you select a range hood, you'll need to know a few things about them. In this section, we'll go over some of the important facts about them. When you're done, you should find it much easier to decide which one's best for you.
What Is It For?
First, it’s important to understand just exactly what your vent hood is supposed to do.
In the simplest sense, a range hood is made to move air above your cooking surface elsewhere. Depending on the model, it may vent that air outside or simply filter and re-circulate it.
There are several reasons to ventilate your cook top. Heat, smoke, steam, food odors and harmful fumes are all issues that a range hood is designed to reduce or eliminate. Not only does it make cooking a more pleasant experience, it helps make your home safer and cleaner.
Function: In terms of function, there are two basic types of range hood. A ventilating hood connects to a duct that carries the exhaust outdoors. A re-circulating hood draws air in, and then releases it back into the room after filtering it. Filter types vary widely.
Re-circulating hoods are less safe and efficient, but are usually less expensive. They are also easier to install, since no vent duct is required.
Ventilating hoods require ducting, may cost more and typically take longer to install. They are, however, a better investment, since they help keep your home sanitary and free of fumes and odors.
Mounting: How a range hood will be mounted is important. In many kitchens, the hood will be attached to the bottom of a built-in cabinet over the stove. Other applications may call for a wall mount.
For island-mounted cook tops, you may need a free-hanging hood. In most cases, these are attached to a sturdy, decorative duct, which is typically secured to a ceiling joist.
Discharge: With wall or cabinet-mounted models, you may have duct work inside the wall or overhead. For installation with ducting in the wall, you’ll need a rear-discharge hood. Almost all other types of range hood will be top-discharge.
Physical size is an important factor in almost any venting application. The hood should be at least as wide as the cooking surface. Most manufacturers recommend a hood that extends 3 to 6 inches on either side of the cook top.
In many installations, size is limited by the cabinetry beside and above the stove. The standard widths for under-cabinet installation are 30” and 36” but not all cooking spaces were created equal. Be sure to measure the space you have available.
The fan in a range hood is rated by how many cubic feet per minute (CFM) of air it moves. Obviously, this is an important factor in choosing the right model.
While recommendations will differ from one manufacturer/builder to another, there’s a rule of thumb that can help determine the air flow you’ll need.
Generally, your vent fan should move 100CFM of air for every foot of cooking surface width. For instance, a standard, 30-inch wide stove would need a range hood with a minimum rating of 250CFM.
Keep in mind that the rule above is a generalization. There are many other factors, including room size and duct length, size and configuration. Check your local building codes and when in doubt, opt for a higher flow rate than estimated.
Obviously, your budget is also an important factor. Range hood costs can vary widely, even within the same type. Manufacturers, materials and features all play a part in determining the price.
Brand name matters to many consumers and there’s a good reason for that. The names for this appliance may not be familiar to the average homeowner. It’s worth doing a bit of research to find out which names are preferred by contractors and consumers.
If you’re a Consumer Reports subscriber, this is a good opportunity to take advantage of that. If not, ask around.
Materials and finishes will make a considerable difference in range hood prices. They also impact performance, durability and ease of cleaning. Stainless steel tops the list for popularity and commands a high price. Copper, brass and other metals are also available as well as patina and brushed finishes, but tend to be very expensive.
Steel and aluminum with anodized or enamel finishes tend to be less expensive and can be found in a wide variety of colors to match your kitchen décor. These finishes are a common choice of housing developers in standardized kitchens.
When considering the material and finish for your range hood, consider more than just your color scheme. You’ll want to think about cleaning the surface, which will be constantly exposed to heat, airborne grease particles and smoke. Cheap finishes may chip easily and may not stand up well to scrubbing.
Features like multiple or variable fan speeds, baffles, filters, lights, multiple discharge options and more will impact the price of a vent hood.
High-end range hoods may offer more features, such as thermostatically controlled fans, timed shutdown, remote control and others. You’ll need to determine how important the extra safety and/or convenience of each is to you.
Air flow is a feature, too and we’ve already mentioned that it’s important. We’ve included it here only as a reminder that a higher air flow rate will usually mean a higher price.
Now that you've had an overview of what to look for in a range hood, we can start looking at our top choices. Let's focus first on the models we feel are your best investment for a particular application.
Gas Stove: GV-Z01-30
Our top choice for venting a gas range or cook top is the GV-Z01-30 from Golden Vantage. This sleek, 30” hood offers a safety feature that makes it ideal for mounting over a gas appliance: a built-in gas sensor.
When the unit detects the presence of natural gas, it disables the fan and flashes the lights to warn you of potential danger. We believe a feature that might save your home and family is worthy of top placement.
Of course, the range hood has much more to offer. It’s a stylish, stainless steel hood with twin 30W halogen lights, a remote control and a clear, easy-to-read LED speed/clock display. It moves a surprising 400CFM of air at less than 65db of fan noise.
Baffle filters help keep oil from coating the inside of the hood and duct and are easily removable for dishwasher cleaning. A return air baffle helps retain heat and prevent drafts when not in use. The stainless chimney telescopes to adapt to your ceiling height.
This low-profile, high-powered hood is a stylish and functional solution for venting your gas range. It comes with carbon filters for ductless operation if desired. Check out the details at the link above.
Elegant design, high air flow and convenience are just a few of the reasons we recommend the Firebird FBTK-B306H-90 for ventilating an island cooking surface.
Classic lines with round corners and a flat bottom give this 36” range hood a real sense of style. The black stainless steel finish makes it a great accent for your modern kitchen.
Naturally, we didn’t base our recommendation on looks alone. This attractive unit moves 500CFM with less than 70db of noise. The 3-speed fan draws air through three removable, dishwasher-safe, aluminum mesh screens to remove oil and other particles.
Four LED lights at the corners and can be controlled either remotely or via the dual touch panels on either side of the hood. There’s a flapper in the discharge to prevent backflow and heat loss during idle times.
With its quiet power, high-tech convenience and beautiful looks, we think this range hood is a great choice for small-to-medium cooking islands. Follow the link above and we think you’ll agree.
Wall Mounted: Mueller Deluxe 36”
The Mueller Deluxe 36” range hood gets top honors in the wall mount category for three reasons: style, power and versatility.
Don’t let the unique design and great, European looks fool you. This range hood moves air at an astonishing 775CFM. It does so while only emitting 60db of noise, too!
You can use this hood ducted or in re-circulating mode with the included 3-layer stainless steel and charcoal filters. The fan features Teflon coated blades for less oil accumulation and easier cleaning.
A stainless steel chassis looks great with the tempered glass control panel and black cover/visor. A unique LED touch panel controls the fan speed with a slide of your finger as well as the LED lights. When closed, the hood becomes a simple piece of minimalist-style décor.
This wall-mount range hood delivers efficiency and power in a simple, clean design and deserves top billing in this category.
Recirculating: Kobe CHX3830SQBD-3 Brillia
When there’s just no way to get the exhaust from your range hood to the outside, you’ll need a re-circulating model. Since that means the air will be discharged back into your kitchen, you’ll want one that will do a thorough filtering job.
The Kobe CHX3830SQBD-3 Brillia is designed specifically for these applications. It’s a professional-quality range hood intended for under-cabinet mounting with no ducting required. Unlike the typical, cheap solution, this model is designed to do the job efficiently.
Baffle filters trap oil and other particles and remove easily for simple and sanitary dishwasher cleaning. The second filtration stage uses charcoal inserts that eliminate odors and help reduce smoke. The 3-speed fan moves up to 400CFM, which is more than enough air flow for a non-vented hood.
The smooth, curved front and tough, 18-gauge stainless steel housing look great with any décor. Two 3W LED lights illuminate your cooking surface.
This range hood is available in both 30 and 36” widths, to fit standard cabinet layouts. If you’re in the market for a non-vented model, check out the details on this one at the link above.
Under Cabinet: Slim Pro Style 30”
Installing an under-cabinet range hood doesn’t mean you have to settle for less than your kitchen deserves. The West Winds Slim Pro Style 30” hood delivers much more than you’d expect.
Seamless, stainless steel construction and an under-the-hood control bezel give this appliance a clean, uncluttered appearance. It also facilitates easy cleaning. Simple, dial controls are easy to access and clean, too. Twin 35W halogen lights are angled nicely toward the cooking surface.
When it comes to moving air, this one has few equals in its class. The 3-speed fan pulls up to 700CFM. Two dishwasher-safe baffle filters help keep the outflow path free of oil and dirt and remove easily. For versatility, it’s equipped for either vertical or horizontal venting.
This one looks great with any stove and delivers incredible performance, too. Take a closer look by following the link above. We think you’ll agree that this isn’t your average under-the-cabinet range hood.
30 Inch: CAVALIERE
For applications where a small hood is required, but no cabinets complicate the installation, a wall mount range hood often provide better performance. This 30” model from Cavaliere is an excellent example.
With a rating of 900CFM, it moves more air than most competitive models. Thanks to a single chamber, 6-speed centrifugal fan, it creates only 25db to 56db of noise – surprisingly quiet for all that air flow!
The design is simple and stylish, with a rectangular chimney and rounded hood corners. Front-mounted push button controls and LED display complete the clean appearance. Brushed stainless steel blends nicely with your kitchen and wipes clean easily.
Under the hood are two LED lights and two dishwasher-safe stainless steel baffle filters. There are no screens or filter inserts to replace. The chimney adjusts to accommodate an 8′ to 9′ ceiling, with an extension available for higher ceilings.
We think you’ll have a hard time finding a more powerful and attractive range hood in a 30” width. Take a look at the link above to see if you agree.
Quiet: Awoco Split Blower System
If quiet is your number one priority, this range hood system offers a unique solution. Instead of housing that noisy fan inside the hood, it’s mounted inline in the duct, in the attic.
The Awoco Split Blower System actually solves another problem, too. Because the size of the blower isn’t restricted by the size of the hood, it’s supplied with a massive, 4-speed fan unit that moves 900CFM, while keeping the noise above your cooking surface at a whisper.
The blower and hood are purchased separately, which gives you two width options: 30” and 36”. Both can be mounted under a cabinet or on the wall.
Either hood will look great in your kitchen, with smooth stainless steel and rounded corners. The front panel features soft-touch control buttons with blue-ring indicator lights. The twin baffle filters are dishwasher safe for easy cleaning. Two LED lights illuminate your range top.
The blower unit comes with 2 sections of flexible 6” duct to route the exhaust to your roof cap or wall vent. The wiring harnesses and top damper are also included.
We think this unique system deserves a good look from anyone who wants a quiet kitchen.
Commercial: 6' Kitchen Exhaust
Let’s face it, if you’re opening a restaurant, you’re going to need serious ventilation equipment. This commercial-grade exhaust hood is made just for that application.
This unit is ETL and NSF rated, meaning it meets national and international standards for health and safety. For the food preparation business, that’s a must. It’s a Type 1 exhaust unit, suitable for greasy discharge.
All exposed parts are manufactured with 430 stainless steel, to avoid corrosion and facilitate easy cleaning and sanitizing. The baffle filter removes easily with side handles and can be hung from a bottom hook. A ½ pint grease cup collects the filtered-out oil for removal as needed.
This ventilator also includes an L55 canopy light fixture suitable for high temperatures. A clear, shock and temperature-resistant globe is included, but you’ll need to purchase bulbs separately.
Clearly, this isn’t the range hood for your show kitchen at home. We’ve included it in our reviews because it’s exactly what a commercial cooking operation requires. The link above will take you to the six-foot model, however several sizes are available.
Residential: XtremeAir PX-12 Series
If you’re not in the restaurant business, but want commercial quality appliances in your kitchen, here’s a range hood that give you the best of both worlds. The XtremeAir PX-12 Series is a perfect blend of form and function.
1mm-thick, brushed stainless steel makes this unit both attractive and durable. The front panel features soft-touch controls and a bright LED clock/function display. A pair of 2W LED lights is angled toward the cooking surface.
There’s no skimping on performance here. Four electronically-controlled speeds provide up to 900CFM of air movement. Stainless steel baffle filters are angled to drain to a rear oil collection tunnel. They’re easily removable and dishwasher safe.
A programmable shutoff timer lets you set 1 to 15 minutes of run time with auto shutdown. What’s more, this unit is extremely quiet, thanks to its twin motors. At full speed, it emits about 55dB.
This pro-quality, great looking range hood is available in 3 sizes: 30”, 36” and a nice, big 42” width. Check out all the details at the link above.
36 Inch Under Cabinet: Cosmo COS-QS75
This size and style of range hood is the overall standard in most modern homes, so we thought we’d include it as a separate category. Our number one choice under this heading is the Cosmo COS-QS75.
Good looks and professional features come together nicely in this model. From the sleek, pro-style canopy in stainless steel to the ergonomic handles on the filters, this is a thing of beauty. The black, soft-touch control panel with its bright blue back lit LED display is as much an accent as a functional feature.
Naturally, we wouldn’t award this spot to just another pretty hood. This model packs a 900CFM blower with three speeds. The twin lights are high-lumen LED’s. Three big baffle filters remove easily and you can drop them in the dishwasher for effortless cleanup.
Did we forget to mention convenience? It has an auto-shutoff timer and there’s a full-function remote control included, too!
Follow the link above for the details. We think you’ll like what you see.
There are some trusted names out there for this particular appliance. We know that some readers will have brand name preferences and others will simply want to know which brands are rated the best. With that in mind, here’s our list of top picks by popular range hood brand names.
Proline: PLJW 104
You say you have some air to move from a cook top? Proline has the range hoods to get the job done! Our top pick from this manufacturer is their latest line of wall mount units: the PLJW 104 Series.
Make no mistake; these aren’t your everyday, run-of-the-mill vent hoods. These are the big guns, starting at 42” wide and going all the way up to a full 60”. They move air at a whopping 1200CFM.
Despite the big numbers, these range hoods are stylish enough to grace any kitchen or cooking area. This new line features unique, backlit, retracting control knobs mounted under the hood. They sit flush with the surface when not in use, adding to the sleek appearance.
Big, heavy-duty baffle filters are easily removed and dishwasher safe. 35W, dimmable lights are strategically placed along the front and rear edges. The 4-speed blower isn’t just powerful; it’s also one of the quietest in its class.
The supplied chimney extended to fit ceilings up to 9 feet in height. Extensions are available for higher ceilings.
This attractive, powerful new model from Proline is up to the toughest tasks. See for yourself at the link above.
Z Line: GL1i-36 Stainless Steel
Looking for unique styling and professional features in a range hood for your cooking island? The Gli Series is a great showcase model from Z Line.
This overhead-mounted range hood is available in 30” and 36” widths. Each size is equipped with a 4-speed, 760CFM motor to ensure sufficient air movement.
The unusual, peaked hood and flat rail sides add a touch of class to your cooking area. 430-grade, brushed stainless steel adds to the aesthetic quality and makes for easy cleaning, too! Both front panels sport matching, round buttons and a bright LED display.
Aluminum baffle filters strip grease from the exhaust air. When it’s time to clean those, the big, solid handles make for easy removal. They’ll be just fine in the dishwasher.
Two 20W halogen, directional lights ensure a well-lighted cook top.
It’s classy, powerful and affordable. That’s a winning combination in any kitchen. See for yourself at the link above!
Akdy: New 36"
This manufacturer offers a very wide range of high-quality range hoods that won’t drain your bank account. We’ve selected this 36” island model to feature partly because of its unique European style.
An elegantly arched, clear hood attaches directly to a round, stainless steel chimney for a striking, unusual look. Bright, blue touch panel controls on both of the glossy black sides add eye appeal and ease of operation.
The central blower draws 343CFM at the highest of its 3 speed settings. It’s relatively quiet at less than 65dB. The stainless steel mesh filter traps grease and other airborne particles. It’s dishwasher safe, so cleanup is a breeze.
Four 3.5W LED strip lamps provide even lighting for your stove top. All four are controlled by single switches on the touch panels.
This stylish hood is ETL listed, so you may rest assured it’s safe to operate. It can be converted to ductless operation with the addition of a charcoal filter.
With all of the above and a surprisingly low price, we think this island range hood is a great value.
Zephyr: Savona ZSA-E30DBS
Here’s a manufacturer that creates stunning designs in practical range hoods for almost any application. This beautifully minimalistic, 30” wall-mount model is no exception.
The Savona ZSA-E30DBS combines a smoothly-curved front and concealed controls for a clean, clutter free appearance. A gloss black stainless steel finish compliments almost any kitchen décor.
This beauty is also packed with power and technology you’ll love. A 685CFM blower with 5 speeds gives you plenty of versatile air moving capability. Zephyr‘s ICON Touch® Controls are neatly tucked under the front of the hood to handle the fan and lighting conveniently, yet unobtrusively.
Speaking of lighting, the concealed BriteStrip™ LED provides 2 brightness levels to suit varying conditions. Behind that is a pair of aluminum mesh filters to keep grease and other particles out of the vent flue.
This range hood offers much more, including an auto shut-down timer. Don’t be misled by its good looks; take a look at all the features by following the link above.
Kobe: KOBE RA3830SQB-5
Kobe has a reputation for manufacturing commercial-quality range hoods for your home. We’ve featured this model because it packs that quality into one of the smallest, most common styles on the market.
The RA3830SQB-5 is a 30”, under-cabinet range hood with the power and features of a larger unit. That makes it a surprisingly efficient appliance for installations where space is at a premium.
It starts with an 18-gauge, commercial-grade stainless steel housing. With a height of only 2-3/4”, this hood is especially suitable for low clearance applications. A 3-speed, 680CFM blower resides in the cabinet above the hood.
Mechanical push-button controls are recessed under the front of the hood to keep the face smooth and uncluttered. Two bright LED lights illuminate the cooking surface from the front.
A pair of professional-style baffle filters traps grease and airborne particles to keep your duct clean and safe. They’re easily removable and you can toss them in the dishwasher for thorough cleaning.
If you’ve always thought that a small, under-cabinet range hood can’t do the job of its big brothers, take a good look at this one.
Cosmo: 668A750 30 in.
Cosmo is another clear leader in this industry. Their reputation is built on rugged, efficient appliances without the huge price tag. This range hood continues that tradition and features that clean European styling that’s taken home décor by storm.
The 668A750 is a 30” wall-mount range hood with striking looks and plenty of power.
A tempered glass arch is suspended from a uniquely styled, stainless steel chimney. The front-mounted control panel provides 5 simple, clean push buttons with lighted indicators. The sophisticated, elegant design will be an instant update to your kitchen.
A 3-speed, 760CFM blower provides well above average air flow for a hood of this size. At maximum speed, it generates less than 60dB of noise. A pair of dishwasher-safe, stainless steel baffle filters help eliminate grease and particulates from the air stream.
Two rear-mounted, efficient LED lights deliver illumination for your cooking surface as well as striking accent lighting.
If you’re looking for a beautiful, yet practical and powerful 30” range hood, start by looking at the link above.
Bertazzoni: Heritage Series 36"
When it comes to the kitchen, this Italian company knows how to outfit it. We’ve selected this model as our top pick because of its handsome, traditional looks as well as performance.
The Heritage Series 36″ is functional classic art for your kitchen. With its massive, stainless steel hood, matt-finish canopy and gleaming front rail, it will certainly be the center of attention.
There’s no lack of performance here. A 3-speed blower moves 600CFM at only 59dB at maximum speed. The stainless steel baffle filters clean up easily in the dishwasher.
Electronic push buttons control the fan and a pair of bright, halogen lights to brighten your cooking area. The square, stainless steel duct cover is included.
If you’re looking for a range hood that’s distinctively different, rugged and powerful, this might be just the model for you. It’s a real showpiece for any home where the kitchen is a central part of living.
This company manufactures its range hoods right here in the “good-ole” USA. If that’s not enough to make you want to buy from them, their products will be. Our top choice is from their Pro-X Series.
The PX06-W36 is a hood with a distinctive, modern T-shape that adds a high-tech look to your cooking area. The brushed stainless steel blends nicely with any color scheme. It’s also extremely durable, with a full 1mm thickness and seamless design.
It’s both powerful and quiet, with a 4-speed, 900CFM blower that outputs only about 33 – 54dB. Flat baffle filters can be swung down for a quick wipe-down or easily removed for dishwasher cleaning.
Four 2-watt LED lights ensure even illumination of your cooking surface. Easily control everything with the front-mounted, touch screen control and bright LED display with clock. It also has an auto-shutoff timer for even greater convenience.
We think you’ll appreciate the quality and innovation this model offers. Follow the link to find out for yourself.
If price is your main concern, we've got you covered. We've found the best range hood for your buck in several price ranges.
Under $200: FIREBIRD 36" Powerful Stainless Steel
A small budget doesn’t mean you can’t have good quality. This convertible 36” hood from Firebird has all the looks and features you’d expect from more expensive models.
Sleek design, brushed stainless steel construction and triple, dishwasher-safe baffle filters are just the start. This model moves up to 450CFM and has 4 speeds. A touch-sensitive control panel with a clock and twin halogen lights help make this a lot of appliance for the money.
Here’s an under-cabinet model that packs a lot of punch for the price. This model from BV delivers much more than you might expect.
Dual motors move up to 850CFM. Twin baffle filters drain to a removable oil tray at the rear of the unit and remove for dishwasher cleaning. The brushed 430 stainless steel hood also cleans easily.
A front-mounted display and touch control panel lets you select 6 speeds and control the two 3.5W LED lights.
His unit can be vented 3 ways and carries an ETL safety rating. It’s a solid value at this price.
Our top pick in this category comes from a Chinese company that developed this hood specifically for the challenges of Asian cooking. The Fotile JQG7501 30″ Range Hood features a unique design as well as wall-mount or under-cabinet installation.
The side draft, 3-speed, dual centrifugal fans draw air through a baffle filter concealed under the hinged front cover. A 45-degree front cabinet drains liquids to an oil tray at the bottom.
This unit has the looks to match its performance, too. There’s really too much to list here, so follow the link to see it all for yourself.
Final Verdict: Our Top Choice For Your Money
There are too many installation options to narrow our top choice down to a single range hood. Cooking surface type, available space and other factors have to be considered in choosing the right model.
That being the case, we’d like to close by highlighting a few outstanding models we’ve already reviewed. We do have a favorite, in terms of value, and we’ll note it below:
Is low noise a priority? Take a good look at this Awoco model. Its split design puts the 900CFM blower in your attic, for whisper-quiet operation. We think this range hood offers the best value for your money.
If you need a ductless hood, Check out the CHX3830SQBD-3 Brillia (Check Price on Amazon.com), with 2-stage filtration and a 400CFM blower. It’s the top of the line in non-vented hoods.
Finally, if you have a bit more to spend, consider the Fotile JQG7501 (Check Price on Amazon.com) range hood. It’s innovative, highly powerful and efficient, and looks amazing under the cabinet or as a stand-alone wall-mount.