When purchasing your kitchen range hood, a lot of questions will be running through your mind as you try to balance your wants and needs with the various specifications of each range hood you look at. There are some rules of thumb for choosing range hood specifications. For example, you can determine how many CFMs you need in a range hood by looking at the BTUs in your kitchen range and looking at the width of your range.
The range, whether it’s electrical, gas or duel, is used to cook food in the kitchen. The cooking process, because of chemical reactions, produces smoke, grease, smells, carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide. A kitchen range hood is there to ventilate these byproducts to the outside of the home. A ductless range hood ventilates the kitchen by filtering the air and re-circulating it back.
CFM stands for cubic feet per minute. This unit describes how much air flow the range hood is capable of moving; this is also known as the power behind the range hood. Some range hoods have as little as 150 CFM, while others come with as much as 1000 CFM. The amount of CFM you will need in your range hood will depend upon the specifications of the range you have installed or are planning on installing.
The Home Ventilating Institute recommends 1 CFM per every 100 BTU. BTU stands for British Thermal Units and describes how much energy the range gives off while it’s working. Technically, 1 BTU is equal to 1055 joules and is equal to the energy needed to heat one pound of water by one degree Fahrenheit. BTUs are also used in the air conditioning industry.
1 CFM = 100 BTU
You can also calculate CFM with the width of the range in feet (12 inches is equal to one foot). It is estimated that you need 100 CFM for every foot of range. For example, a range that measures 24 inches will need approximately 200 CFM, while a range that measures 48 inches will need 400 CFM. However, if the range is located on a kitchen island and an island range hood is needed, it is recommended to have 150 CFM for every foot of range hood. So, if your range is 24 inches wide, you will need 300 CFM, and if you range is 48 inches wide, you will need 450 CFM in your range hood.
100 CFM = 12 inches of range width (for wall mount range hoods)
150 CFM = 12 inches of range width (for island range hoods)
Therefore, the amount of CFM you need depends upon the amount of heat the range in your kitchen gives off; you may also be able to calculate the CFM based on the width of your range. CFM may also depend on other factors, including how much frying you do, the volume of your kitchen, range hood height and noise level. You can browse range hoods on RangeHoodsInc.com.