Range Hood Height - How High is Yours?

colorladyJuly 5, 2011

Got my Broan RP1 Series range hood installed today. Did a unique install because the ceiling is a low slanted ceiling where it is and we couldn't put a (useless never-used) short cabinet above it.....so we found a thick slab of old reclaimed wood and suspended it between two 24" high cabinets then hung the under-cabinet style hood from the slab. The top of the slab is a shelf for what will be a constantly changing display of whatever. Here's the problem. We hung the fan so we wouldn't be looking up under it. The bottom of the hood is 25 1/4 inches above the top of the stove. The instructions from Broan recommend 18" - 24". I'm only 5'4" and I am hitting my head against the front edge of the fan. I can't imagine it being 18" high. That seems absurd. In fact, to clear my head, we'd have to raise it about 4 inches. Can you tell me how high the bottom of your wall mounted range hood is from stove top? Do you hit your head? Did you hit your head when you first got it and then learn not to with time? I hate to move it higher but if I lean in to look into a pan on a back burner I must duck my head to avoid the hood. Do you duck your head? My friend has a range hood that must be at least 36" above the stove top.....but she does have a high CFM Vent-A-Hood. My fan is just 400CFM and will be over a gas stove. Your personal experience and thoughts will be much appreciated.

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babushka_cat

i have not used mine yet as still under construction. mine is for a wolf gas range, ventahood 600 CFM's, it is installed at 31" from surface of stove to bottom of hood. i am 5" 6" and seems a good height. note this is a undercab vent a hood not wall mount.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2011 at 9:32PM
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ginny20

My current hood (Nutone from 1961) is very low. It's only 21.75" from the electric coil cooktop, and it extends 19.25" out from the back wall. I'm 5'3". I don't remember really hitting my head, but it is very hard to get spaghetti out of a pot - I can't lift the server up enough. Another 4 inches, as you have, would probably be enough. I don't often duck under, I just crane my neck to peer into the back. In a pinch, though, the front of the hood retracts, rotating 90 degrees so it sits flush with the upper cabs. It's pretty cool, and that puts it back several inches so I can bend in farther or lift out spaghetti. They did some interesting design things in the old days.

I'm surprised the recommendation is 18-24" - 18" seems ridiculously low to me, too. I'm planning to install my new Kobe 30" up, but it is also higher CFM.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2011 at 9:37PM
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NYSteve

When I was looking into this, I found a couple of conflicting requirements.. I concluded that it really depends on a few factors.

We ended up with a wood hood, 30" above the cooking surface (well, almost...), and a 1200CFM insert/blower. The hood has a very large capture area (being almost 24" deep); with the powerful blower, this should be a good combination. This sits over our Capital Culinarian Range Top .. a very powerful cooktop requiring a more powerful range.

As an example of the conflict; Had we gone with a BlueStar, the requirement would have been for 36" of height clearance to the hood... and the hood manufacturers were recommending lower installation heights. It felt a bit catch-22: More powerful BTU cooktops require more clearance, but you get better exhaust with less clearance.

I think that a higher CFM blower lets you get away with mounting it higher, but that probably depends on lots of things like the capture area of the blower.

It's also probably true that if you're not doing crazy stir fry or searing/blackening/grilling, then it's much less of an issue either way... (Disclaimer: I'm really only learning and sharing my experience; this could be off base for you in general.)

    Bookmark   July 5, 2011 at 10:15PM
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ak0402

Typically, the distance recommended by most cooktop/range manufacturers, and by hood manufacturers, is 28-32" between cooktop and bottom of hood. I am surprised Broan recommended 18-24"--perhaps you could call their customer service number and ask why they did that. Maybe Broan feels that in order for the 440 cfms to be effective, it has to be at a lower height than a higher-cfm hood? I don't know. In any case, you have pinpointed why it should be closer to 30" - a shorter distance leaves only a claustrophobic space to work over your pots and pans. What distance does your range manufacturer recommend?

My hood is 30" distance from the top of my range. It's high enough to allow me to work easily over my pots and pans, yet not so high that it's not effective. One of the reasons I got rid of my over-the-range microwave was due to that claustrophobic feeling that the MW gave because it's hung so low over a range.

You said "We hung the fan so we wouldn't be looking up under it". Why? I've never heard that before. What's wrong with seeing under the hood? It's an exhaust hood in your kitchen, why don't you want to see it? Even if it were hung at the more typical distance of 30", you'd have to be right in front of it to see under it. I'd rather be able to look under my hood, than not be able to peer into a tall pot on the back burner.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2011 at 10:30PM
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colorlady

Good point akchicago. Why don't I want to look up under it? Well, I didn't want to be looking at the lights and filters while sitting at my nearby counter height island or even lower kitchen table. But maybe I shouldn't care about that. Thanks for all you responses. And yes. Broan's instructions recommend mounting the range hood 18-24 inches above the stove. If it were 18 inches it would be the same as the bottom of my cabinets. I don't bump my head on them BUT they don't stick out 20 3/4 inches from the wall. My cooktop and granite is not yet installed. I have a makeshift cooking zone consisting of an electric fry pan and a portable induction burner...but I will try to post a picture. My makeshift cooking zone is pretty darn efficient. Along with my toaster oven and microwave, I almost wonder why I'm spending scads of money on appliances.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2011 at 11:38AM
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Laurageo1

We are getting a Capital Culinarian and our hood will be 33" above the range b/cmy dh and I are fairly tall.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2011 at 11:54AM
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francoise47

My hood (1000 cfm) is 33" above the top of the range. I like the height. I'm 5'8" and it works very well.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2011 at 12:03PM
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colorlady

I called Broan customer service. When I told the rep that the instructions recommended a height of 18-24 inches she said "just put it wherever it feels right for you". I said that the recommended height in the installation document seemed terribly low and she said "that's just our recommended height. You can put it as high as you want". So there you have it.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2011 at 12:40PM
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sayde

1200 CFM Prestige-- hood is 31 inches above the range (Blue Star) -- comfortable for me at 5'3". But DH (5'3") has to be mindful of the corners of the hood -- not when standing in front cooking, but when working at the counter on either side of the range.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2011 at 3:13PM
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cooksnsews

I have seen OTR micro/hoods mounted at around 18" above an electric cooktop. Of course, NOT IN MY HOUSE! Might work for those folks who don't really cook...

    Bookmark   July 6, 2011 at 3:16PM
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trailrunnerbiker

I have a 1400 cfm at 33 ". I am 5'2 and DH is 5'11" so this is perfect for us both. Ours has the lip in front plus the wood framing so the controls and lights aren't an issue. Steve has it right...the cfm and capture makes up for the height differential. Add in , as he says, the way you cook and it really is a big variable.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2011 at 3:32PM
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    Bookmark   July 7, 2011 at 2:56AM
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brianadarnell

Our wood hood is 32" above the countertop/stove top. our Kitchenaid range suggested 42" but after we looked at our specs for other stoves, we decided that seemed ridiculous.It didn't seem like it would able to capture any smoke that high off the range. Here's a picture... I'm 5'7 and even though I don't have use of my range yet (obviously), its going to be fine.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2011 at 10:36AM
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colin3

Let me suggest amcook's post here: http://ths.gardenweb.com/forums/load/appl/msg0711031226925.html

and kaseki's here: http://ths.gardenweb.com/forums/load/appl/msg1103130516988.html

One basic point is that the column of effluent widens as it rises, so a higher hood should be larger so as to catch it all. Look at restaurant hoods, which are typically well above the stoves, and extend out 4 feet from the wall.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2011 at 3:12PM
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sherriz

Ours is 32" above the rangetop and is a 1200 CFM Modernaire hood. From Cavendish house

    Bookmark   July 8, 2011 at 7:16PM
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caryscott

"I have seen OTR micro/hoods mounted at around 18" above an electric cooktop. Of course, NOT IN MY HOUSE! Might work for those folks who don't really cook..."

An OTR micro/hood doesn't have the same projection as an under cabinet or other hood. Not sure what having an OTR micro/hood has to do with "really" cooking. My Grandmother and great Aunts were great cooks and the primary ventilation in their kitchens was a window. Quality of the cooking is in the taste not the kitchens the food was made in (don't kid yourself plenty of awful food comes out of high-end kitchens).

    Bookmark   July 8, 2011 at 7:41PM
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cooksnsews

My point was that I couldn't imagine an everyday cook being comfortable with any obstruction, like a hook or micro, only 18" above the cooktop. I wouldn't have it, and neither my mom nor grandmoms had to deal with it either. But they are long gone and no one is designing kitchens for them or the way they cooked.

There is another thread reminding us that not everyone with whom we deal is a GW colleague. Very few of the greater public are TKO like many of us. Most cannot afford to be. Many of the rest cannot imagine why one would care to spend money on high end appliances, when take-out is cheap and convenient. There are several generations younger than me who think warming a tin of soup is "cooking". This greater public are the demographic that is now driving mainstream kitchen and appliance design (who else needs a "chicken nugget" setting on their range?). That is probably why the OP's Broan was recommended to hang 18"-24" above the cooktop. It wasn't targeted to a GW TKO consumer.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2011 at 11:04PM
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cindaintx

Mine is going in at 32" above the counter. And sacrificing some capture area for head room by pulling back 2".
The cabinetmaker had originally made the wood surround so that it would have been 27" above the range and out as far as the edge of the range.
I'm 5'8" and hubby is 6'1". We would have been slicing our heads open on the corner of the cabinets when we leaned in to stir the spaghetti sauce on the back burner. I grew up in a house with overhanging cabinets that we bumped into regularly. I think I have a permanent dent in my skull.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2011 at 11:26PM
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willtv

Ours is 30" above our Bluestar 36" 6 burner. I'm 6' and no "Head Banging" problems.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2011 at 11:26PM
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caryscott

cooksnews posted:

"My point was that I couldn't imagine an everyday cook being comfortable with any obstruction, like a hook or micro, only 18" above the cooktop. I wouldn't have it,"

The fact that you wouldn't "have it" has to do with your subjective habits and preferences not cooking (your conflating two different justifications)

"Very few of the greater public are TKO like many of us. Most cannot afford to be"

As a proud member of the "rest" of the unwashed masses I would point out that you can be TKO at any price point it isn't just an affliction of the privileged few.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2011 at 9:06AM
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dp215

We also pulled back the range hood by two inches in order to allow more head room - dh is 6'2 and son is 6'5. In order to compensate (we have a bluestar as well) we got a kobe hood - very, very powerful and fairly quiet.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2011 at 9:51AM
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nini804

Holy cr@p...I just looked at my kitchen plan to see what mine is and it is 42"! I wasn't a member of GW when we did the kitchen design of our new build, so I am sure I just nodded and smiled when the KD said this is how it will be. I hope my vent/fan will even work that high up! Good grief!

    Bookmark   July 21, 2011 at 10:33AM
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sophie123

Well at least you will have plenty of room to work! The other factor is depth placement from edge of countertop.

We've had major issues with hood placement and still trying to resolve so i'm aware of the tradeoffs.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2011 at 11:22AM
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