Everything You Need To Know About Range Hoods

Everything You Need To Know About Range Hoods

Everything you need to know about range hoods

Range hoods serve a number of important purposes for your household, from providing an aesthetic appeal to your kitchen to replacing harmful airborne irritants and improving the cooking process.

If you’re currently in the market for a high-quality range hood for your home, you should first familiarize yourself with some of the key technical terms that will assist in the purchasing process. Here are several range hood terms to know as you start your search.

Range hood

A range hood is a kitchen appliance that hangs above your cooktop and serves to eliminate airborne contaminants via a combination of filtering and air extraction. Range hoods are also commonly referred to as vent hoods and kitchen hoods.


A ducted range hood – also known as vented – provides ventilation from the range to the outside of your house. It completely removes irritants from the kitchen and works best if the range hood is mounted to an exterior wall.


Ductless ventilation – also known as non-ducted, ventless, or non-vented – sends air through a filter to remove irritants and then sends it back into the kitchen. It requires no duct work but the filter should be changed every few months. Ductless ventilation works well if the range hood isn’t mounted to an exterior wall.


Downdraft is a type of range hood installation that is hidden within the range surface and pops up when in use to help remove irritants. It is connected to ducts beneath the floor.


An insert range hood is hidden in the wall or cabinetry above the range. It requires a custom fit and relies on power packs mounted and ducted within the system.


An island range hood descends from the ceiling above your island range.


Under-cabinet range hood placement attaches to the underside of cabinetry above the range and can be either ducted or non-ducted.


Wall-mounted range hood placement is also known as chimney-style and is mounted to the wall above the range.


A blower is also known as a fan and is the device that moves the air from above and around the range into the hood and then through the ventilation system.

Types of blowers include:

  • External blower
  • Inline blower

External blower

An external blower is installed outside of the house to reduce operational noise. It requires an outdoor-rated enclosure.

Inline blower

An inline blower is also known as a remote blower and is installed outside of the range hood but inside the house. It reduces operational noise but doesn’t require an additional outdoor-rated enclosure.


BTU stands for British Thermal Unit and is the unit by which the heat output of gas-fueled appliances is measured.


CFM stands for cubic feet per minute and is the unit by which the air movement of range hoods is measured. The Home Ventilating Institute recommends a minimum of 100 CFM per linear foot for wall-adjacent hoods and 150 CFM for island hoods.


A sone is the unit by which the noise level of a range hood is measured. 1 sone is said to equal the sound of a running refrigerator. Typical conversation is said to take place between 1 and 4 sones.

Carbon filter

A carbon filter is also known as a charcoal filter and is a cartridge filled with activated charcoal used to filter irritants from the air in your kitchen. It is required in ductless range hoods and removes other irritants after grease has been absorbed by the grease filter. You should replace your range hood’s carbon filter every few months.

Grease filter

A grease filter is a cartridge filled with layers of metal mesh that trap airborne grease. It does not need to be replaced like a carbon filter does.

Backdraft damper

A backdraft damper is a valve inside a range hood duct that opens during operation to allow air from inside the house to be exhausted outside. The damper closes when the range hood isn’t in operation to prevent outside air from entering your home.

Capture area

A range hood’s capture area is the width and depth of the hood in relation to the cooktop below it. It is the area within which irritants will be captured and sent through the range hood. Your range hood’s capture area should be as wide as the range and should cover the entirety of the backburners and half of the front burners.


The chimney is the part of the hood that extends from the hood toward the ceiling.

Find your perfect range hood with CopperSmith

Knowing the terminology behind range hoods is just a starting point in selecting the perfect hood for your kitchen. If you feel overwhelmed by all of these terms, you’re not alone. A range hood is a big investment in your home, and it’s important to select the right one. Fortunately, we’re here to help.

CopperSmith’s industry-leading collection of range hoods features an extensive variety of styles, shapes, and materials to find the perfect fit for your kitchen. Contact us today and discover the right range hood for your home.

Absolutely beautiful product--everything I wanted and more!! - Tracy