Best lighting for exhaust hoods? Halogen, LED, or standard

fatladyMay 13, 2014

We are getting a 90 cm (36") Bertazonni cooktop, and would like to get a stainless steel chimney-style hood (i.e. against the wall and up to the ceiling).

All my other appliances seemed more straight forward to choose, but the hood selection is killing me.

We have a lot of large windows in the kitchen, so most important to us is that the hood have good lighting. I've seen hoods with halogen, LED and standard light bulbs -- WHICH PROVIDES THE BEST LIGHTING FOR COOKING? Will 2 25 watt halogens beat 3 20 watt standard bulbs?

It would be a bonus to have one that is also easy on the ears.

Some additional info: must fit up to our 9'2" ceiling, and is going into an overseas home.

We've been focusing on Bosch and Delonghi (since these models are common here) but we are open to an suggestions.


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I have had two halogen bulbs in my last two kitchens (current and previous home) and find the light to be outstanding -- much better than the rest of the kitchen :-). I just looked it up and the lights in the current hood (Zephyr Genova) are 50w each.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2014 at 12:51PM
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I have two halogens on my hood with a low and high setting, and use them on low most of the time, plenty of light and more pleasing than LED in my opinion.
I'll often leave only the hood lights on low in the kitchen later at night, providing a very nice atmosphere...

    Bookmark   May 13, 2014 at 1:41PM
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The only difficulty with halogens that I have found (there were 3 in my Wolf Pro Island hood) was head baking when standing under one to stir fry. Wearing a hat was one solution; replacement with LED lamps was another. The LED counterparts of the PAR 30s (I think they were) don't have exactly optimal spread for uniform illumination, but otherwise are fine for their purpose and cool to stand under.


    Bookmark   May 14, 2014 at 10:14AM
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We went with the Zephyr Monsoon II DCBL and it comes standard with 2 LED bulbs in it. We came from a cheap OTR microwave with the crappy lighting it had on it, so this is a huge step up for us.

We love the LEDs as they don't get hot, and it is plenty of light for us over our 36" 6 burner BS range top.


    Bookmark   May 14, 2014 at 11:03AM
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For the longest time, I was convinced that halogen is the king of lighting, and LED's were 2nd-choice at best. They seem brighter when you look at them, but the light gets weaker with distance - given a 20-watt halogen bulb vs a "20-watt equivalent" 1-watt LED bulb, the halogen bulb would provide more light --at the work surface--.

However, it looks like the LED technology is catching up fast. The range hood I got has 4 1-watt LED bulbs, and they provide more than enough light for the cooktop.

There was a choice between this model with LED's vs halogens, and even though it was a bit more expensive, I'm glad I went with it. It's a pure white light, which matches the rest of the kitchen lighting, and it's completely cool - I can leave the hood on for hours, and the temperature of the bulb never changes.

Also, in the long term, the energy $avings and the longer bulb lifetime offset the initially higher cost of LED's. So, former skeptic convinced, my vote is for LED's over halogens.

    Bookmark   June 3, 2014 at 4:28PM
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I have 4 halogen lights in mine but now a lot of companies are using LED.
The halogen lights are bright and are toasty.
I might try to swap out for LED.
I want to use up my spare bulbs and then might try LED.
Caveat- my induction cooktop makes more noise when I use my LED overhead lights- so not sure if same issue with with hood lights.
I am going to have Sparky check out the interference.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2014 at 7:07AM
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My hood insert came with 3 halogen bulbs in it, and I bought 3 LED replacements intending to drop them in right away. However, I didn't research deeply enough and it turned out that the LEDs were 5000 kelvin "daylight". Whoops. They don't coordinate at all with the LED under- and over-cabinet strip lights, the LED recessed lights (Cree CR6), and the pendant lights (Cree TW-series), all of which are 2700 kelvin. So I left the halogens in the hood, and they blend perfectly with the warm white LEDs. Oh well!

    Bookmark   June 4, 2014 at 9:21AM
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Cree expands their lighting product catalog at a reasonable pace, and you may find that suitable lamps with close to the desired color temperature are now available. If not, wait a few months.


    Bookmark   June 4, 2014 at 11:19AM
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Right on, kas. I love Cree, they do it right. And bonus, they are a "local" company to me (local as in North Carolina). :-)

    Bookmark   June 4, 2014 at 12:34PM
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Bungalow, thanks for explaining the color difference, I will keep it in mind when looking for LED bulbs!

derrickthecrane, how much more expensive was the LED version of your hood? Trying to see if it makes sense to buy a hood with LEDs already in it, or shop around.


    Bookmark   June 4, 2014 at 5:36PM
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The LED version was $ 200 more than the halogen version ($ 2495 vs 2295), but at the time, I didn't want to add yet another project (shopping for LED bulbs) to the endless list of things to do with my remodel, so I just went for it.

This hood has 4 lights on the bottom + 4 lights inside (behind glass), and I didn't think it was worth the hassle to comparison-shop for 2 different types of bulbs.

Here is a link that might be useful: Futuro Murano hood with LED lights

    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 1:58PM
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My hood has two 20W halogens. I purposely left them on for 24 hours since reading this thread yesterday. Just went to check and my hand needs to be within about 4" directly below before feeling any heat. My head doesn't feel it at all, unless directly touching. (I'm not bald but have short hair.) If I placed my head that close while cooking I'd be getting burned by the heat below, not the lights above. Calculated $90 a year electricity cost if I kept them on 24/7/365 @ $.25/KWH. I've never used a hood with LEDS so I can't judge which light is better, but heat and electricity cost factors are, well, non-factors in my book.

This post was edited by foodonastump on Thu, Jun 5, 14 at 22:16

    Bookmark   June 5, 2014 at 3:52PM
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