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Cooking Island Ventilation

by Roxanne Nelson last modified Aug 28, 2013 01:38 AM
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Cooking Island Ventilation

Posted by Roxanne Nelson at December 30. 2007

We like to entertain and my husband is a fabulous cook, so we are planning to install a cooktop in the island of our new home.  This project is an addition to an existing home, so we are limited based on the existing construction, to a 7'-9" ceiling height in the kitchen. 

  As we were walking through the sample kitchen mock-ups at a local kitchen supplier, we became concerned about the low height of the island venthoods and how it might end up driving us crazy.  We are used to a undercabinet, typical kitchen venthood (that is lousy) and extends only partway over the cooktop, thus it has never interferred with us cooking. 

Recommendations for island venthoods are that they extend past the cooktop and are a maximum of 30" above the cooktop.  We were planning on a Broan venthood that has a chart indicating that with a 8' tall ceiling, you can have a max. of 26' between cooktop and venthood.  That puts the venthood bottom at 5'-4 1/2" or so.  My husband is 6'-1", so I'm thinking that this will totally drive him nuts and he will stop cooking!

I've been reluctant to go to a downdraft system- but it would be unobtrusive and would disappear into the countertop when not in use.  The cooktop we are specifying is a Bosch 45,000 max BTU unit, so it's not commercial, but still in need of ventilation.

Anyone have any experience with a downdraft system you were happy with?

Or island venthood that you were still able to cook with?  (maybe one adapts and gets used to bending down to cook????!)

Thanks-  Roxanne

Re: Cooking Island Ventilation

Posted by richierod at January 02. 2008

I have an island hood, and though it may have been recommended to place it at 30" above the cooktop, I put it at 36". It works great. I believe that the 30" number is not realistic if you are - and this is key - purchasing a hood rated at 1200 CFM, which is what you should have. Mine has the blower mounted on the roof, so it's relatively quiet, and it has variable speed, so you are not constantly running at 1200 CFM. Anything less will not perform adequately if you are reducing sauces or searing meats.

The whole idea of having an island is to keep the room open. If you succumb to the 30" model, you are ruining the very reason for having the island!

I would also recommend buying a hood that is wider than your cooktop. I have a 30" wide stove but a 36" wide hood. With this combination I have had absolutely no problems with ventilation... and I cook every night! Good Luck!

 

    -R. 

Re: Cooking Island Ventilation

Posted by Roxanne Nelson at January 02. 2008

Another conversation with the kitchen supplier reveals that most everyone has an issue with the 30" recommended clearance from hood to cooktop.  He indicated that most people place them higher- even up to 40" above cooktop. 

 In his opinion, a venthood placed higher than recommended is still better than a downdraft system. 

Our next step will be to check with our mechanical contractor on their recommendations.  If the unit is too powerful, it might throw off the systems in the rest of the house. 

Richierod- do you have problems with the 1200 cfm hood taking too much air out of the house?  We were looking at a 500 cfm model.  See article below on oversized fans and the problems that may be created by them. 

http://homeenergy.org/archive/hem.dis.anl.gov/eehem/99/990113.html

 

Re: Cooking Island Ventilation

Posted by richierod at January 03. 2008

Roxanne - 

That's an interesting article. It seems reasonable. But having a 1200 CFM fan does not mean running it at 1200 CFM at all times. In fact, as I alluded to above, the ONLY time I use the fan at full throttle is when I'm reducing sauces or searing meat - things that produce a copious amount of smoke or steam. This process in general won't take more than five to fifteen minutes, so the question becomes - and this will re-occurr time and time again in your remodel - what is important to YOU (or your husband the chef)? For me, even after reading the article, I'm glad to have the extra power provided by the big blower when I need it...... I would much rather suck up all the smoke I know I'm going to produce from my steak for ten minutes than sacrifice that ability for a potentially smoky living room one day in January.

 You say "throw off the systems in the rest of the house", but it seems the article is only concerned with exhaust gasses flowing back into the house. I have to wonder how much and for how long you would have to run a vent hood before an appreciable amount of exhaust gasses would accumulate in your house. It seems like the answer would be ALOT. Granted, carbon monoxide is no joke. Someday, I'll run my fan at full blast and wait to see if the CO detector comes on, just to see what happens.

Again, good luck in your remodel! I believe it is easy to be carried away from what is best for your lifestyle by well meaning but too focused contractors. I fought that battle many times during the building of my house. 

 

 -R.

 

Re: Cooking Island Ventilation

Posted by lynne cimimo at January 15. 2008

Hi Roxanne,

We are building our own hood for the same reason, only difference is our kitchen is a peninsula.  My husband built the frame from some red oak we had left over from construction.  He built the box 6' long to accommodate the vent and some additional lighting.  He hung the unfinished hood and we both decided to hang it 6" higher then in my rendering which ended up to be about 34".  We have room to add an additional vent kit if needed - our kit is only 250 CFM, I'm sure there are larger CFM kits out there.  We also decided not to vent to the outside but we can convert this kit if we need to.

I have to say our $300 hood (so far) looks like is should have cost $3000.

Here are the components we used:

http://www.homedepot.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?storeId=10051&langId=-1&catalogId=10053&productId=100527726

http://www.homedepot.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?storeId=10051&langId=-1&catalogId=10053&productId=100600314

Good luck with your project!

Lynne

http://www.designbyphoto.com/www/Index.html

 
Attachments

Re: Cooking Island Ventilation

Posted by Roxanne Nelson at January 15. 2008

Lynne-

Thanks for your input.  You will have to post pictures when your hood is complete.  Is it really cantilevered off the side wall?  That will look great!

 

After much contemplation, we are going with a down draft system.  The Broan hood we originally selected doesn't seem to work for ceilings lower than 8' and I haven't been able to get a response from them regarding this issue.  Our mechanical contractor felt the downdraft system would be the best solution, as the limited ceiling space would make it difficult to vent.

We are going with a Bosch system that fits behind the Bosch cooktop.  When in use, it telescopes 10" above the cooktop.  When not in use, it slips back into the countertop. It's a 600 cfm system and can have a remote blower to decrease noise. Bosch DHD9605UC 36 in Downdraft Vent

This is a rather unclear picture of the system- but it shows the view from the top when it's telescoped out.

Thanks again!

Roxanne

Re: Cooking Island Ventilation

Posted by Dana Killion at February 25. 2008

Need advice on a related issue. Installed a Jenn-Air gas downdraft slide-in range in a new remodel. It's vented out the back, then out and up through a false wall up to the roof. I know not everyone loves these but I didn't want to mar the line of the floating cabinets above with a vent and this seemed the only option my architect or I could come up with. Due to a number of things, I'm not happy with how this is installed. Primarily the fact that it doesn't sit well in the space. I have approx. a  2 1/2" gap in the back between the range and the backsplash and of course it's no where near flush with my cabinets. Don't need perfection but this isn't working for me.

The contractor is blaming the counter-top guy for installing too tight (I say it was his job to supervise), Jenn-Air for not identifying a lip on the front edge in the specs that makes it wider than 30", the architect says you'll have to swap the stove for another model (this was the only one he could find originally), the contractor says live with it and have a filler piece made for the back. Meanwhile the range sat on site in a box for 6 months prior to install as I'm remodeling from out-of-state. As usual no one wants to take responsibility.

 

I need help figuring out if I have any other options. I was told by my architect when we spec'd this item that it was my only range option and I'm not in love with the range jutting out so far. Oh and I was also told that I didn't have the necessary wiring for a dual fuel. Do you creative people have any brilliant suggestions?

 

Thanks! Dana

Re: Cooking Island Ventilation

Posted by phylisrauscher at January 03. 2013
Previously lynne cimimo wrote:

Hi Roxanne,

We are building our own hood for the same reason, only difference is our kitchen is a peninsula.  My husband built the frame from some red oak we had left over from construction.  He built the box 6' long to accommodate the vent and some additional lighting.  He hung the unfinished hood and we both decided to hang it 6" higher then in my rendering which ended up to be about 34".  We have room to add an additional vent kit if needed - our kit is only 250 CFM, I'm sure there are larger CFM kits out there.  We also decided not to vent to the outside but we can convert this kit if we need to.

I have to say our $300 hood (so far) looks like is should have cost $3000.

Here are the components we used:

http://www.homedepot.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?storeId=10051&langId=-1&catalogId=10053&productId=100527726

http://www.homedepot.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?storeId=10051&langId=-1&catalogId=10053&productId=100600314

Good luck with your project!

Lynne

http://www.designbyphoto.com/www/Index.html

I appreciated your distinguished manner of writing the post. You have made it very easy for me to understand.

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Air Conditioners Houston TX

 

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