The best under cabinet range hoods offer great ventilation for your kitchen. When functioning properly, these appliances remove smoke, steam, and grease from the air. This is vital when it comes to ensuring your lung health as you cook.
Among range hoods, the under cabinet type is the most popular. This variety fits neatly against the wall, beneath a cabinet and over your cooking range. In this article, we’ll cover nine of the best under cabinet range hoods. We will focus on the most common, 30” size. Read through the descriptions to find the range hood that is right for you.
Broan-NuTone BCSQ130SS Three-Speed Glacier Under-Cabinet Range Hood with LED Lights ADA Capable, 1.5 Sones, 375 Max Blower CFM, 30", Stainless SteelView on Amazon
Broan-NuTone 423001 30-inch Under-Cabinet Range Hood with 2-Speed Exhaust Fan and Light, 230 Max Blower CFM, WhiteView on Amazon
Broan-NuTone 30-inch Under-Cabinet Convertible Range Hood with 2-Speed Exhaust Fan and Light, MAX 210 CFM, WhiteView on Amazon
Broan-NuTone F404223 42-inch Under-Cabinet 4-Way Convertible Range Hood with 2-Speed Exhaust Fan and Light, 230 Max Blower CFM, BlackView on Amazon
Broan-NuTone 423623 36-inch Under-Cabinet Range Hood with 2-Speed Exhaust Fan and Light, 230 Max Blower CFM, BlackView on Amazon
Broan-NuTone BUEZ130BL Non-Ducted Ductless Range Hood with Lights Exhaust Fan for Under Cabinet, 30-Inch, BlackView on Amazon
Range Hood 30 inch Under Cabinet, Slim Vent Hood with 3 Speed Exhaust Fan, Push Button Control, Ducted and Ductless Convertible, Stainless Steel, CIARRA AWS75918BView on Amazon
COSMO COS-QS75 30 in. Under Cabinet Range Hood with 500 CFM, Permanent Filters, LED Lights, Convertible from Ducted to Ductless (Kit Not Included) in Stainless SteelView on Amazon
Broan-NuTone 423004 30-inch Under-Cabinet Range Hood with 2-Speed Exhaust Fan and Light, 230 Max Blower CFM, Stainless SteelView on Amazon
CIARRA Ductless Range Hood 30 inch Under Cabinet Hood Vent for Kitchen Ducted and Ductless Convertible CAS75918AView on Amazon
Last update on 2022-10-07 / Affiliate links / Images, Product Titles, and Product Highlights from Amazon Product Advertising API
What Size Range Hood Do I Need?
The size of your under cabinet range hood should depend on the space you have available. In general, a hood should be at least as wide as your range. Ideally, it will be a few inches wider on either side.
Regarding dimensions, the most common for range hoods is 30” followed closely by 36”. However, you can also find range hoods that measure 24”, 48”, and many more sizes.
Remember that positioning matters as well. Specifically, as you install your range hood pay attention to the distance between the range hood and the cooktop.
For a gas cooktop, most range hoods should have 24” to 30” clearance above the range. For an induction or electric cooktop, in most cases, the range hood should be only 20” to 24” away. These specifications may vary slightly from model-to-model, so be sure to read the instructions for your model before installing.
How Many CFM Do I Need for My Range Hood?
As you have seen on this list, one of the most important range hood descriptors is cubic feet per minute, also known as CFM. This is a measure of how much air the range hood fan is capable of moving.
CFM alone is not a guarantee that smoke will be effectively filtered out but does play a role. As a rule, you want 100CFM for every foot of electric cooktop width. For gas cooktops, take your BTUs and divide that number by 100 to get your required CFM.
Many range hoods offer more than enough CFM. For example, the IKTCH Classic Series Under Cabinet Range Hood has a CFM rating of 900. That extra power may be more than you need but in some cases is necessary. If your ducting is exceptionally long, or has sharp bends in the line then you will probably need additional power to move air effectively.
What Type of Range Hood Do I Need?
The type of range hood you choose is largely a matter of preference. Different kitchens and different range spaces call for different kinds of range hoods.
As you shop, you will find that there are many kinds of range hoods. Here are some of the most common categories:
- Island hoods
- Over-the-range microwaves
- Hood inserts
- Under-cabinet hoods
- Professional grade hoods
- Downdraft hoods
- Chimney hoods
Each offers its own benefits and works well with specific kitchen layouts. For example, an over-the-range microwave is a dual-purpose piece of equipment that saves space.
Under-cabinet hoods are also a popular option. These range hoods save on space as well while prioritizing cabinet space. As you read descriptions for different products, it will become far more apparent which models are suitable in different scenarios.
How Noisy is a Range Hood? What Are Sones?
Noise is a major factor when evaluating range hood options. An excessively loud range hood makes for difficult conversation and is a nuisance in general.
There is often a trade-off between range airflow power and noise level. As you might expect, the more powerful your range hood fan is, the more likely it is to make a loud noise as it runs.
There are two ways that range hood noise is measured, decibels and sones. Most people are more familiar with decibels but sones are simply another unit for measuring sound. When it comes to range hoods, noise levels typically range between one and seven sones.
Fans aren’t the only factor in range hood noise level. The duct size matters as well. The larger your duct opening is, the lower the noise level is likely to be.
How Do I Install a Range Hood?
Most range hoods accommodate DIY installation, but will require more than one person to complete safely. The method of installation will depend on the variety of range hood you have purchased.
In this regard, it matters whether you have a ducted, ductless, or convertible range hood. This will impact the level of detail in your installation process.
Installing a ducted range hood is often the most involved process. This is because the length and shape of the duct have so much influence over your range hood’s performance.
How Do I Clean a Range Hood Filter?
Just like there are many kinds of range hoods, there are also a few different kinds of range hood filters. Here are some of the most common filter types.
- Stainless steel baffle
- Aluminum mesh
Of these three options, carbon is the only one that is disposable. The other two are often dishwasher safe making for relatively simple cleaning.
Filters often come with removable parts to facilitate washing. Owners should wash their filters every one to three months. This ensures that the filter is not clogged with grease and continues to clean the air effectively.
What Product Certifications Should I Look For?
As with any product, there are surefire ways to know that you are purchasing a quality model. For range hoods, there are a few different certifications you should look for when shopping.
The first certification to know about is an HVI certification. In this context, HVI stands for Home Ventilating Institute. This group evaluates residential products for airflow, sound, energy, and lighting. If a range hood comes with an HVI label you can be sure it ranks well across all these factors.
The ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) seal of approval is also something to look for in a range hood. This is especially beneficial for the elderly or those with disabilities. ADA compliance ensures access and use for all parts of your society including range hoods.
An Energy Star Rating indicates that the range hood you are looking at has good energy efficiency. The Broan BCSEK1 Glacier Range Hood is a prime example of a range hood with this rating.
Electrical Testing Laboratory (ETL) listings signify that a range hood has undergone extensive testing in many areas. These ETLs are certified by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Rigorous ETL testing makes for products that are safe to use.
The final relevant certification is an Underwriters Laboratories (UL) certification. UL certification is a lot like ETL certification in that they both evaluate the safety of using a product.
Of course, naming “the best range hood” is highly subjective. What best fits the needs and goals of your kitchen may be quite different from other readers. Hopefully this article will help you align your priorities with a product that performs well in the ways that are important to you.