Last Updated: 3/17/2023
Author: James Zhao, Sr. Tech Specialist & Alex Park, Product Specialist
If you enjoy cooking, you likely know the importance of having a range hood in your kitchen. Range hoods are essential for removing smoke, fumes, and other pollutants from the air and creating a clean and healthy cooking environment. To keep your range hood functioning properly, it's important to perform regular maintenance.
In this article, we'll provide some range hood maintenance tips to help keep your kitchen hood in top condition. We'll cover everything you need to know about range hood maintenance regarding:
In addition, we’ll answer some FAQs homeowners may have about upgrading their range hood or finding the right one for their kitchen.
To maintain your kitchen range hood, follow these five steps.
By cleaning or replacing a range hood’s filter monthly (or as needed), you can help extend the life of your hood and prevent any potential problems that could compromise its performance. Whether you will need to clean or replace the filter will depend on the kind of range hood you have, particularly if you have a ducted or recirculation model.
Most ducted range hoods have a mesh filter to catch grease and prevent the air expelled outside from being overly polluted. Mesh filters will not have to be replaced, but they should be cleaned around once a month to prevent buildup.
Here are the steps to clean range hood filters:
If you have a non-ducted range hood that recirculates the air (known as a recirculation model), they will most likely have a replaceable charcoal filter. Charcoal filters will need to be discarded and replaced once a month, or whenever you notice unpleasant odors or decreased airflow in your kitchen.
A recirculation range hood filter cleans the air before pushing it back into your home, meaning it will acquire buildup faster than ducted filters. Follow your range hood’s manual to remove and replace the dirty filter. Most disposable filters can be purchased online from the manufacturer or at your local hardware store.
It is important to wipe down the exterior of a range hood weekly to maintain its appearance and functionality. Over time, grease, smoke, and dust can accumulate on the surface of the range hood, making it look dirty and dull. Wiping down the exterior removes this buildup, helping to restore the range hood’s original appearance and prevent any damage to the finish.
Regularly cleaning the exterior of your range hood also helps prevent the buildup of grease and other debris, ensuring that the ventilation system is functioning properly and that the air in your kitchen is clean and healthy.
To properly clean the exterior of your range hood, follow these steps:
Check the fan blades of your range hood around every six months to ensure that they are functioning properly. Fan blades play a crucial role in the performance of a range hood, as the blades are responsible for drawing in air and removing smoke, fumes, and other particles from your kitchen. If the fan blades are dirty or damaged, they can affect the performance of the range hood.
Depending on the design of your range hood, you may need to remove the filter or cover to access the fan. Once you unplug your range hood and remove any hardware, inspect the fan for buildup or damage. Wipe the fan clean of any dust or grease using a microfiber cloth, but avoid using any liquid cleaners that could damage the range hood’s internal electrical system.
Once you’ve cleaned the fan and reinstalled the filters or cover, test your range hood by turning it back on. If you notice any cracks or bends in your fan, call a qualified professional for repairs.
If you have a ducted (or vented) range hood, it is important to inspect your air ducts at least once a year to ensure that they are clean and functioning properly. The air ducts play a crucial role in the performance of the range hood, as they are responsible for carrying the air and pollutants out of your kitchen and venting them outside.
While filters should remove some contaminants from entering your air ducts, the ducts will still accumulate grease and dust over time. Since they are vented to the outside, air ducts also run the risk of pollen or other outside debris entering them.
If your air ducts are wall-mounted, you may be able to easily access them by unscrewing your vent cover (look at your owner’s manual for instructions based on your model). Inspect the ducts using a flashlight to look for any signs of damage or debris, including cracks, holes, dust, or grease. To remove buildup and improve the functionality of your ducts, use a cloth or vacuum cleaner hose to clean hard-to-reach places.
If you cannot easily access your air ducts or have noticed they are damaged, call a qualified appliance technician to handle the necessary cleanup or repairs.
As a general guideline, it is recommended to have your range hood professionally serviced at least once every 1-2 years. The exact frequency at which you should professionally service a range hood depends on several factors, such as how often you cook, the type of cooking you do, and the type of range hood you have.
To get professional servicing for your range hood, follow these steps:
Professional servicing can help identify any issues with your range hood early on, such as clogs, damaged parts, or malfunctions that could affect its performance. By addressing these issues, you can help extend the life of your range hood and prevent any potential problems.
Overall, regularly inspecting, cleaning, and servicing your range hood is an important part of maintaining a clean and healthy kitchen environment. By ensuring that your range hood is working efficiently, you can enjoy a safer, more comfortable cooking experience and protect your health and your home.
If you’re interested in range hood maintenance, chances are you already have a range hood in your kitchen. (If not, here’s our guide to help you choose a range hood.) In addition to questions about maintenance, we at FOTILE field a lot of general range hood FAQs. Here are some common questions we hear from current range hood owners.
To determine what size range hood is right for you, you need to consider the size of your cooktop or range, as well as the size of your kitchen. If you’ve noticed that your range hood isn’t running optimally even after you’ve performed maintenance, the previous property owner or landlord may have installed the wrong size.
Here are some guidelines to help you determine if your range hood is the right size:
Overall, the right size range hood should be able to effectively capture and remove smoke, fumes, and other pollutants from your kitchen.
Most issues with range hoods can be resolved with regular maintenance or repairs. However, if you’ve consulted an appliance technician and they cannot easily correct your problem, it may be worth it to invest in a new range hood.
Here are some signs that you may need a new range hood:
If you notice any of these signs, it may be time to consider replacing your range hood with a newer model. A more modern range hood can improve the air quality in your kitchen, reduce the risk of grease fire, and provide a more comfortable cooking experience.
It's a good idea to consider upgrading your range hood every 10 years or so, or sooner if you notice any signs of decreased performance or wear and tear. By upgrading your range hood, you can enjoy a safer, more comfortable cooking experience, and help protect your health and your home.
Upgrading your range hood can provide several benefits, including:
If you’re curious about range hood maintenance, here are related articles that you may be interested in:
FOTILE America is a leading provider of kitchen ventilation technologies. We carry under-cabinet, wall-mounted, and island range hoods, as well as ducted and recirculation models featuring advanced technologies for performance and convenience. To learn more, shop our range hood models today.