How low can you go...vent hood to range top, that is?

willinakApril 9, 2014

I'll be installing a new hood for a soon to arrive 30" Capital range. Capital doesn't publish a distance, but Kobe says 26"-30".

Capture would be much improved at a lower height, so I am wondering how low can I go w/o "real" safety issues.

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I placed mine lower than suggested,22 inches above the grate, to get in a small cabinet above the hood, and one issue I never thought of was that I have to bend down to turn on the light or fan, because otherwise I can't see the switches. While the capture is better for the rear burners, it is worse on the front burners because the vent does not stick out as far as the range.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2014 at 9:28PM
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Yes, I know the Kobe controls are underneath and thought that might be a problem. Not sure why most mfg'rs put the controls under rather than on the face.
Interesting that is doesn't capture the front burners as well.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 6:32AM
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30" is pretty standard. I think 22" is WAY too low. I am sorry Barryv, no offense, but not only are there the issues you mentioned, but what about if you have a tall pot. E.g., you are making chili or soup, how do you lean over the pot to look into it, and stir it, if the hood is that low. 22" is cramped. Really, 30" is a nice height, not only for usefulness, but also aesthetics. It'll look balanced at 30" above the rangetop.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 8:26AM
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22"? Wow, that's really low. I installed a Vent A Hood recently, they suggested 27" and I thought that was too low. I ended up placing it at 30" which was the suggested distance from American Range.

The other reason I went 30" instead of 27" was the gas company, they will come and inspect the final installation and the code up here in Quebec states 30" distance for a gas stove (although I still never got that in writing). I think I posted about this a month or so ago, the last thing I wanted was to be told that I have to move it up 3 inches. I still found 27" to be too low. I called a bunch of people up here, (municipal offices, gas company, construction bureau, fire dept, etc...) they all said 30" or what your gas range recommends. The code in the US may be different, I did find something about 27" min being accepted to non combustible material.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 9:12AM
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From Vent-A-Hood : Professional Series PRH9230SS-Mounts 24"-27" Above Cooking Surface".

I'm really interested in actual engineering functionality than " I like it 30" from cooking surface", if you know what I mean.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 10:56AM
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Besides visibility and access, and capture and containment, installing a low thin hood with a combustible cabinet above it is asking for a new kitchen in a smoke damaged house. A low hood with stainless steel ducting to the ceiling could handle a cooktop fire, but I wouldn't want a wood cabinet closer than 36 inches above an unintended flambe with plenty of grease to feed on. If the effluent can escape capture from the front burners, then so can the fire.

Hood filters, both baffle and mesh types, perform an important function -- fire blocking. Please use a large enough hood, mounted high enough, that minimal safety requirements are met, and that allows the cook to see clearly into pots and pans, grab handles safely, and, ideally, flip pancakes.


    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 11:25AM
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Sahmmy, no offense, that is why we have boards, so people can exchange their ideas. Actually, the 22 inch height is fine for seeing into pots, I have no trouble using tall stock pots, though mostly I use a turbo pot for boiling water for pasta, and it works fine, though some of the steam does go straight up and does not get captured by the vent. I don't have any problem flipping french toast, though I am not all that great about pancakes - sometimes the outer edge of the one being flipped falls on the top of one of the pancakes on the griddle, but I am pretty sure that is because it is so cramped on the aftermarket griddle, and I make big pancakes. I am certain the height of the vent hood plays no role.

I am usually pretty good on safety. It is a Viking hood, and I installed it when I got a Viking dual fuel with open burners - I have not gone back and looked at those installation instructions, but in Googling a Viking installation manual it says " Wall cabinets above the range must be a minimum of 36â (91.4 cm) for open top burners and a minimum of 42âÂÂ
(106.7 cm) for sealed burner models above the range cooking surface for the full width of the range. This minimum
height requirement does not apply if a rangehood is installed over the cooking surface."

In the manual, the word not is underlined, so it seems pretty clear to me, they didn't see a safety problem. The vent hood is 10 inches high, so the bottom of the cabinet is 32 inches above the grate. I haven't noticed the top of the vent hood ever getting warm to the touch, so I don't think there is any real fire hazard. While I don't like bending over to switch on and off the lights, if I had to do it over again, I would at most raise it an inch or two, I still love that cabinet over the vent hood, just used it tonight.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 9:58PM
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Thanks Barry.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2014 at 11:41PM
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willinak, I understand what you are saying and I had called Vent A Hood as well, they told me you'll lose 10% efficiency for every inch higher than 27". 10% sounds quite far fetched, again for myself it was really only a question of building code that I put it to 30". I spoke to a lot of people including the installer for the Vent A Hood retailer where I bought it from (I had it installed by my contractor) and he said "I've installed hundreds of these but I need to put them to 30" because of the gas inspectors". Again, it depends how strict your gas company is in your neck of the woods.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2014 at 8:30AM
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My Zephyr is only 24" above from induction top. It works VERY well this way and I am fine with it but.... more than one man has bumped their head on it because it also sticks out pretty far (tamburo).

    Bookmark   April 11, 2014 at 8:58AM
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Thanks guys!
I understand the 30" requirement, but I believe there is a loose interpretation of what 30" is measured to. The hood is not a combustible surface. Of course, you don't want to melt the insulation off the wires in the hood, but with air flow as it is, I doubt that would happen at almost any height.

I guess I'm looking for the minimum height that would optimize capture, and still be functional as a cooking tool.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2014 at 9:23AM
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