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The Buyers Guide to Cooker Hoods and Extraction

Built in Cooker Hoods and Extraction

There are many types of hood/extractor available. Most of them are listed below:

  • Chimney
  • Integrated
  • Canopy
  • Conventional
  • Telescopic
  • Downdraft (For worktop or island installation)
The main reason for installing an extractor is to take away the smells and grease that are produced during cooking. Extractors will also help to take away the steam and heat that is associated with cooking on a hob. The "dirty" air passes through a grease filter first, which is normally made up of layers of aluminium mesh (metal grease filters). Some extractors do still use paper grease filters, which can be washed a few times but will eventually need to be replaced. Metal grease filters can be washed in the sink or a dishwasher, and therefore do not need to be replaced.

Ducted out or re-circulating?

All extractors are designed to take the "dirty" air through ducting and then out to the outside world. The majority of extractors also have the facility to have a carbon/charcoal filter fitted, which will get rid of the cooking smells. The "cleaned" air is then blown back into the kitchen via a vent in the extractor. This does not help alleviate the "problem" of condensation etc. caused by steam, but sometimes is the only option if the extractor is not fitted to an outside wall.
It is important to keep the ducting "run" as short as possible. Every bend or elbow in the ducting will reduce the efficiency by approximately 5%. Always use the manufacturers recommended ducting, normally 125mm or 150mm diameter.
Current building regulations require virtually all hoods fitted within new properties to be ducted out.

Remote motors

Some manufacturers offer extractors with a remote motor. This means that the motor/fan unit is not situated inside the appliance, but is fitted "remotely". The remote motor is normally fitted in a loft space or onto an outside wall and is connected to the "hood" by a power cable. Ducting is required to take the "dirty air" from the hood to the motor and this must be ordered separately. The main advantage of this type of extractor is that they are a lot quieter than standard hoods. The extraction rate is also improved, and can be up to 25% more efficient.

Chimney hoods (and Island hoods)

Avoid common ordering and installation errors....

  • Please check ceiling heights - even though hoods can have adjustable chimney sections, some ceilings are too low or too high!
  • Remember that Island hoods must be fixed to a ceiling
  • The fixing must be strong enough to hold the Island hood (40kg+).
  • Order an island hood for use above an island
  • Ordering a standard hood for use against a wall
  • Remember to order the ducting/filters
These are available in various sizes.
The most common are 60cm, 70cm and 90cm. There are other sizes available- 80cm, 100cm and 120cm to name a few, but these are less common.
Virtually all chimney hoods have chimneys supplied in 2 sections. This enables them to be installed at varying heights. See diagram below.

It is not necessary to match the width of the hob and hood. You can fit a 90cm hood over a 60cm hob or a 60cm hood over a 70cm hob! We recommend that the hood is at least as wide as the hob for maximum efficiency. In any event furniture MUST NOT be fitted above, or overlap, a hob unless it is below some form of extraction system.
Island hoods must be fixed to the ceiling. These hoods need to be fixed to a joist etc. in order to obtain a secure fixing. Please ensure sufficient support is available in the correct position before ordering your hood.
Although there is a choice of colours on the market, the vast majority of chimney hoods are only available in steel.
Extra care should be taken when ordering Rangemaster hoods. There are various versions available - with or without a rail and with Chrome or Brass trim.
Please ensure that the model you order is the correct height and type.

A canopy hood cannot be fitted above an island; an island hood cannot be fitted against a wall.

Integrated hoods

Avoid common ordering and installation errors....
  • Remember to order ducting/filters with the hood.

This type of hood has a door mounted on the front of it. All manufacturers offer at least one of these in their range as it is relatively inexpensive and when fitted is virtually undetectable. Available only in 60cm wide and normally offered in silver (not stainless steel), this type of extractor is an old favourite.

Conventional Hoods

Avoid common ordering and installation errors...

  • Remember to order ducting/filters with the hood.

Conventional extractors were very popular at one time. They can be fitted to the wall above a hob, or to a "top box" unit as shown on the previous page. These tend to be bought nowadays as a replacement for old existing extractors, and are used less in "new" installations. These hoods are generally not as powerful as other types and are usually not the most attractive.

Canopy Hoods

Avoid common ordering and installation errors....

  • Remember to order ducting/filters with the hood.

Also described as "motor units", this variation is normally used in a wooden canopy or a chimney breast style installation. There is a very limited range that will fit into a wall unit, but extreme care must be taken to ensure that your units will accommodate these hoods. There are a few sizes available, but they are generally made in 52-54cm or 72-75cm wide sizes. These hoods are generally 300mm deep or more and will not fit into a standard wall unit.
Care must be taken by the client/installer with regard to the size of these extractors, as some will not fit in certain furniture canopies.

Telescopic Hoods

Avoid common ordering and installation errors....

  • Not all of these extractors come with a "trim" on the front.
  • Remember to order ducting/filters with the hood.

This style of extractor is slowly becoming more popular. These are fitted into a wall unit, and are available in various widths. The extractor motor is hidden in the unit and all that is visible is a pull out section at the bottom. This section can normally have light pelmet fitted to it, so it will blend in with the rest of the furniture. The disadvantage with type of extractor is that the unit above it is lost due to the motor inside.


Avoid common ordering and installation errors....

  • Remember to allow sufficient space below for the motor unit
  • Use the correct length ducting
  • Allow for ducting when fitted within an Island unit
There are many pitfalls with regard to the installation of this type of extractor.
This extractor fits into the worksurface adjacent to the hob or hobs. Most often used in "island" installations where it is more difficult to install an extractor overhead.
The problem with this type of extractor is the way the ducting is installed. If it is an island installation, then the ducting has to be run under the floor. Not easy when it is a concrete floor! The other problem is that Gaggenau downdraft extractors, for instance, have a separate motor.

Please bear in mind the downdraught extractors can be very complicated, particularly when ducting.

Cleaning Appliances.

We are often asked questions about keeping appliances clean. The most popular question being, "How do I stop fingerprints appearing on my Stainless Steel oven?".
The short answer is "You can not!".
If baby oil on a soft cloth is used to clean the front of the oven, this will keep them at bay, but will not stop them completely. Another useful aid to cleaning is the E-Cloth. This is a cloth that manufacturers recommend to use on the exterior of ovens etc., particularly stainless steel. These cloths are similar to a face flannel, and are best used slightly damp. Some manufacturers have tried to solve the problem by using a clear lacquer, which coats the steel and protects it from our greasy fingers. This does seem to be effective.
Aluminium finish appliances have become more popular as an alternative to steel as it offers a metallic finish that is not prone to fingerprints etc. This finish is normally more expensive, and the choice of products is limited. At present, Gas hobs are only available with an Aluminium trim. This is due to the low melting point of Aluminium, which obviously makes it unsuitable for use when making the base of a gas hob.
Generally, appliances that are offered in a colour are easier to clean. Often the surfaces are glass and colour is sprayed on the back. However there are still a large number of appliances that have an enamel finish, e.g. hobs and cooker hoods. These are relatively easy to clean, but enamel/painted finishes can chip.

The Kitchen Appliance Store Product Buying Guides

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Please also read our General Buyers Guide to ensure that your order runs smoothly.
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