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Choosing a European Range Hood for Your Kitchen

While a range hoodís primary function is to ventilate, the right range hood can add style and resale value to your home. There are several styles of European range hoods to choose from for your European style kitchen. Your own personal style and needs will dictate which European kitchen hood you choose for your home, but the layout and structure of your kitchen and local building codes must also be considered.

Why a European Range Hood?

Each year, an average of one gallon of cooking fat is deposited on your kitchen walls, ceilings and cupboards. In addition to the grease, steam and odors associated with everyday cooking, these deposits can ruin your paint and other kitchen surfaces. European kitchen hoods can filter out cooking fat, smoke and odors from your kitchen, prolong your paint, and leave your home cleaner and fresher.

Choosing the Right European Kitchen Hood

The most important factor to consider when choosing a European range hood is its efficiency. As a general rule, you want a range hood that can accommodate the output of heat your range or cooktop can give off. For every 10,000 BTU output from your range, you want 100 CFM from the hood. For example, if the combined BTU output rating from a 5-burner cooktop is 48,000 BTU, you would want a hood that can handle at least 480 CFM.

Once you decide on the level of CFM you need to accommodate your range, you need to pick what type of hood you want in your home. There are three types of European range hoods available for installation: the island mount range hood, the wall mount range hood and the under the cabinet range hood.

Finding a European Style Island Hood

If your kitchen is equipped with a free-standing island that includes a cooktop, the European kitchen hood style that will best suit your needs is a European island hood. Island hood ranges come with a downdraft because attaching the hood to an exterior wall is not possible.

Oftentimes a retractable intake device is used. This can be raised from the range or the counter and will pull air in ducts under the floor of your kitchen. Because of this device setup, European island hoods are sleeker and more stylish than their traditional counterparts.

Installing a Wall Mount Range Hood

If your kitchen doesnít include an island, not all hope is lost when it comes to style and finding the right hood for your needs. Wall mounted range hoods are many times used on exterior walls and resemble an inverse chimney. These hoods, while large, give the impression of a professional-grade kitchen and are considered the most stylish of the three types. Stainless steel finishes are popular, and when paired with high-end appliances, can make your European style kitchen fit for a chef.

Under-Cabinet Range Hoods

Under-cabinet range hoods are the most traditional type of European range hood youíll find in kitchens. They are the least expensive, as they are mounted under an existing cabinet and attached to an exterior wall. Usually with these hoods, grease, steam and cooking odors exit your kitchen through an exhaust duct. Because these hoods are mostly covered by your cabinetry, they generally arenít very decorative; but under cabinet stove hoods do a great job at controlling dangerous fumes.

Bigger is Better for Your European Style Kitchen Hood

The larger the hood, the more air it will circulate in your kitchen and the less grease and odor youíll have lingering in your home. Most 30-inch hoods can handle the steam associated with two pots on your stove, but if you have something on each burner, they wonít perform as well. If you have the space in your European style kitchen, consider a cooktop hood that is larger than the width of your stovetop to catch that extra cooking steam.

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