Cooking appliances like ranges and cooktops allow you to craft exciting meals for friends and family, but along the way help contribute to some of the worst messes in your kitchen. When you cook, you’re constantly creating smoke and steam, while also letting grease and other substances fill the air surrounding your cooking space. To combat these airborne pollutants, you’ll definitely want to invest in a powerful range hood.

Range hoods promote proper ventilation around your cooking space, removing steam, smoke, grease and more from the air to make your kitchen comfortable and clean. Finding the right range hood for your home can be tough, especially if you don’t know about the different types of range hoods available on today’s market. To help you get informed, we’ve compiled some useful information on the five common types of range hoods for your kitchen.

1. Under Cabinet Range Hoods

Under cabinet range hoods are found in many homes, and are probably the most common type of hood available. These hoods are installed under the kitchen cabinets above your cooktop or cooking range, offering an attractive design that’s adapted to your cabinetry.

Under cabinet hoods are manufactured in two standard varieties — ducted and ductless. A ducted under cabinet hood features a duct that transports smoke and airborne pollutants outside, while ductless hoods simply filter and recirculate dirty air. A ducted under cabinet range hood is a great choice because the duct system can typically be hidden within your cabinets, offering peak style to your home. That said, ductless hoods are often just as effective. These units come in a wide range of styles, sizes and designs, allowing you to select the perfect choice for your home.

2. Wall Mount Range Hoods

If there are no kitchen cabinets in the area above your cooking space, you may want to invest in a wall mount range hood.

Wall mount range hoods are installed directly in your wall and are aligned with your kitchen’s pre-existing duct system for ventilation. These hoods are sometimes called wall-mounted chimneys, as their design is similar in shape to a traditional chimney. Compared to under cabinet hoods, wall mount hoods are typically wider on the bottom, offering more coverage of your cooking space.

3. Island Hoods 

You can rely on an island hood to provide suitable ventilation for a cooktop or cooking range that is not installed alongside a wall.

These hoods are similar in design to wall mount hoods, but do not have to be installed alongside a wall. An island hood features a vent that connects to a duct in your ceiling, pulling dirty air up and out of your cooking space. These hoods tend to be more expensive than their counterparts, but that cost generally comes with added style. Island hoods often feature sleek, contemporary designs that make them an ideal choice for an elegant, refined kitchen.

4. Cabinet Insert Hoods

For greater customization, you may want to consider investing in a cabinet insert hood.

These units, sometimes referred to as power packs, are designed for installation within an existing cabinet or range hood. Cabinet inserts feature blowers as well as speed controls and lights, but do not feature the complete ventilation system that comes with other types of hoods. An insert hood is best used as the base for a custom designed range hood, providing the core features you need while allowing you to design a ventilation system to match your kitchen’s layout.

5. Downdraft Range Hoods

Most range hoods are designed to pull fumes up towards the ceiling, but downdraft range hoods work in the opposite direction, pulling air in a downward direction out of your cooking space.

These hoods are installed behind your cooktop and reverse the direction of rising air by pulling it down and pushing it out through ducts beneath the floor. Downdraft hoods are good additions to kitchens with drop-in cooktops, and are typically used when the cooktop is built-in to an island. If your kitchen has the proper ducting system, a downdraft range hood can be a suitable addition to the space, offering the ventilation capabilities you need in a unique, eye-catching design.

Powerful Range Hoods For Your Kitchen Ventilation Needs

Your kitchen should be a comfortable and clean location, and a powerful range hood is sure to help make that a reality. Choosing the right range hood can be a challenge, but with some basic information on the common types of range hoods, you’ll be in the perfect position to find the right unit for your home.

You can start your search for the perfect appliance with this online collection of range hoods. For extra assistance, be sure to contact a home appliance expert.