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Question for Bluestar owners

Posted by JPRain (My Page) on
Tue, Dec 27, 11 at 22:32

I just bought Bluestar 30 inch RNB. Bluestar recommends having a hood with 3-6 inch over hang on the range and at least a 300 CFM hood. Is that what everyone is doing?


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

It's a good idea to have a hood that is 3" or 6" wider than the width of the range but; 300 CFM's is certainly on the low side for adequate ventilation. I have a 36" BlueStar cooktop with a 600 CFM Broan hood, which was the maximum I could use due to restricted space through which to run the ducting. I would have installed a hood with 900 or 1000 CFM otherwise. If I were you, I'd buy a 600 CFM hood for your 30" unit. Then you will have enough exhaust power when it needed.


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

3" overhang on all 3 sides (27" deep) is a good idea for any high end range. 300cfm is what - a bathroom fan?

We have a 42" x 27" 1200cfm on our 36" range.


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

Yeah... I was afraid you guys were going to say that. The hood dealer said I need a MUA system with everything above 300 CFM. I'm on hold right now with City Hall trying to confirm or deny.

I wonder how this will take...


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

The MUA problem is becoming quite a problem.
Check your local ordinances but most say over 400 CFM as the break point for needing MUA.
You might be able to surf for the ordinance. Michigan code is M1503.4.1 and states exhaust hood systems capable of exhausting in excess of 400 CFM shall be provided with makeup air......and shall be automatically controlled to start and operate simultaneously with the exhaust system.
How do you spell expensive!!!
I did discover that the ordinance has the same number in a variety of states (but starts with the state initials), so might help you find what your are looking for.
So we went with the Broan evolution which is 350 CFM. The Evolution 3 boosts to 450 and if you need an inspection, it would put you over the limit.
Our local inspectors are requiring MUA even at 400 but the ordinance says greater than...
PS - Blue Star is made in my home town - never even heard of them until I started the remodel - but we went induction to solve thie problem.
Good luck!


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

Thank goodness I live in a free state. Unless I am missing it VA doesn't seem to have any requirements here. Cracking a window is my MUA system.

-Stooxie


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

Crack a window... very funny! We just decided to install an electric water heater and a furnace with an electric start. We're pulling 1200 cfm on a broan liner with an external fan. Works flawlessly. Although I can't smell my cooking when it's on full blast! We have a 36"RCS with charbroiler.


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

Well... The limit in MN is definitely 300CFM. The worst part is they can't tell me what a MUA system consists of. They have a sheet in "THE CODE BOOK" that tells you how to spec out a system. Trying to find that now.

I'm thinking about getting a Vent-A-Hood 300CFM system. They claim it's as good as anyone else's 450 because they don't need a filter and seeing how it goes. I really don't see using all of the burners at once anyway.


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

It's not so much a matter of whether you use all the burners. It's whether you have enough power if you're doing a stir fry or some other really smoky thing, on one burner.

I have 1200 CFM in a 40 inch hood over a 30RNB and I am glad I got the 1200 and not the 600 unit. It doesn't get run on high that often (it is really noisy) but when I have needed it I was really happy to have it.


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

Reading this with interest...I want a 36" Bluestar rangetop in our new build. I don't want to pay thousands for make up air, though PA codes require it over 400 cfm. I've never had a hood that actually vented outside, so I feel like even something underpowered would seem fine. My mother has god-knows-what liner over her 36" Viking and hardly uses it. And life goes on.

The other alternative is this passive Broan system I am looking at (broan make up air damper). It seems to be the automatic equivalent of stooxie's solution of opening a window. There are reasons why this is not as good, but it may be good enough for me and what use I would get out of it.

Just out of curiosity, stooxie - how many cfms do you have and have you ever forgotten to crack the window?


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

Just out of curiosity, stooxie - how many cfms do you have and have you ever forgotten to crack the window?

Hi Cottonpenny,

I have a 1200cfm hood. Here's how I do it.

I really only open the window if I am doing half way or higher for more than just a few minutes. Tonight I wok'ed up 3 bowls of dumplings and I had the hood on about 1/2 way to suck out the smoke. Total wok time was about 3 minutes so I didn't even worry about it.

Honestly the only time I consider opening the window is when I have the hood going for more than about 10 minutes and only if it's about 600cfm or more.

Call me crazy, but I'm just not worried about suddenly dying from carbon monoxide poisoning. I have some scientific basis for that (at least in my head) and some circumstances specific to me.

First, off, if my house starts to be depressurized, where are my carbon monoxide sources? Heater? Burns natural gas which produces water and carbon Dioxide. Dryer? Same. Stove? Same. Water heater? Same. So if I were to be backdrafting am I suddenly producing CO where before I was only producing CO2? Don't think so. An oil burner or wood fireplace is a very different story, no argument there.

NOW... we don't necessarily want too much CO2 in the house either but someone would have a tough time convincing me that we would end up with even a remotely toxic C02 level. My guess is you'd have to be feeling your ears popping from the terrific vacuum created in the house long before that becomes an issue.

There my be other variables there like a technically lower oxygen content of the depressurized atmosphere but now we're really talking crazy. You'd be sucking the walls in if that were the case. God bless you if your house is so well sealed up that that becomes a problem.

So, first I don't even believe it's THAT much of a problem, if you're running your hood "occasionally."

Second, my furnace has a fresh air intake so that's not a factor. My water heater is high efficiency and power vented so it barely passes out much CFMs.

I can believe that continuously running a hood at 1200cfm can certainly produce a low pressure in the house that may not be ideal. I think it would take doing that for a long, long time before anything resembling a level of toxicity were to occur.

Net net is that I think much of this comes from people who want to sell you CO/CO2 detectors, and perhaps lobbyists for same. I am not one of those people who things we should start passing laws because someone, somewhere died of some bizarre set of events.

Just my feelings on the matter. I'll gladly entertain any good scientific reason to change my view on the matter.

-Stooxie


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

Search the following and you will come up with many links for MN
Minnesota make up air code.
Yes - looks like MN limit is 300 (must be colder than Michigan!)
I contacted a furnace company and they explained what needed to be done and I was done with a big hood!
I almost went with the vent-a-hood - have a friend who did and she likes hers.
PS - Send some snow towards us!


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

Hey Stooxie... Which hood are you using?

Also... I'm not going to disagree with your logic. I don't think it would be a problem for me to put in a rather large hood and never see a rise in CO2. But I'm going to live within the code. I've been talking to some HVAC peeps and trying to come up with a plan to live within it and not spend a fortune.


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

JPRRain,

I have a 54" Bluestar Proline hood. Seems to do the trick nicely.

I hear you on staying within the codes. You don't have much choice when the inspectors come.

-Stooxie


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

JPRain - let us know what you end up doing since a lot of people seem to be in the same boat!

Stooxie - great explanation. I didn't know that NG doesn't produce CO, so that's good to know. So if we have a gas furnace, water heater, and gas fireplace we wouldn't be producing carbon monoxide?

I can't imagine running a hood at very high speeds for very long - if you are cooking something at high heat to produce that much smoke, you are typically done with it pretty quick! I don't operate a restaurant where I cook dozens of meals in succession throughout the night.


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

Cottonpenny.... I'll post it when it's done but it won't be for a while. I'm building a new garage right now and then going on to the kitchen. I only bought the BS because I found one for $1700 off the list price. So I won't be able to flip the switch and tell you it works well or not until then.


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

Hi Cottonpenny,

Correct-- mostly ;)

Just to be clear, and cuz someone else will say it if I don't, burning natural gas CAN produce carbon monoxide IF the combustion is not complete, i.e. oxygen deprived. A blue flame from natural gas means you're ok. A yellow or orange flame means it's not getting enough oxygen. The occasional yellow flicker is fine.

A normally burning NG flame should produce essentially zero CO emissions. They would never allow it as a residential fuel source otherwise.

-Stooxie


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

I think one of the issues is that you CAN CAUSE incomplete combustion by cutting off the supply of oxygen to a burner that has been designed to work at a given gas/air ratio. Same gas, but less air = rich mixture. I am sure that Stooxie is not going to kill anyone cooking his dumplings over a three-minute wok, not until they get to the table, at least, (that's a joke, Stooxie! I am quite certain your Gyoza are without parallel!) but I would not be completely cavalier about the makeup air requirement during the winter with a gas furnace in operation, for instance.

But opening a window seems perfectly fine to me. It's what I would do if I had a high capacity hood.


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

mojavean: Maybe I should start reading the obituaries!

I agree with the theory, I just seriously question the ability to suck out that much air that you'd lower the oxygen content of the atmosphere to below 20.95% in your house. That means you'd have to be at less than 1 ATM.

I guess it's possible if you ran the dryer, the furnace and the hood at full blase at the same time.

-Stooxie


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

Does anyone have a 30 inch Bluestar WITHOUT an overhead vent? I am replacing an old down draft Jenn-Air and would LOVE the Bluestar, but don't really have an overhead vent option.
We have a very open floor plan, I cook a ton and am not worried about opening a window if it gets smoky. INPUT PLEASE!


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

@sarahdodge, you will be fine with a Bluestar! We have a cadre of folks on here who tend to think in terms of perfection when it comes to venting. I am regularly scolded for taking them with a grain of respectfully-smoked salt. There are people who would, if judging from their fervid posts on the subject, never cook a damned thing if it required them to take a molecule of their own cooking up the nose.

Here on GW-appliances, the perfect can often impale the good. It is easy to forget that not everyone lives in new construction or a rambling farmhouse out in the woods. Lots of people live in high rises and condos and domes and rowhouses and other structures where cooking effluvia must retreat from below, or through a window, or nowhere in particular.

Now, perfection demands an overhead hood with lots of capture volume and a nice pressure drop to urge every greasy wisp up the pipe and out the wall where Dasher and Comet await.

You, on the other hand, can't put in a hood. So DON'T! Use your downdraft. It won't be ideal, but it will get some of the stuff. Open a window if need be. You will have to clean only the slightest bit more than the next person with the Vent-A-Hood every spring, and remember, YOU control the whole thing anyway. In other words, if you are putting out too much smoke for your house, shut the burner off!

A couple things people don't seem to consider is that you can actually get some stuff done on the Bluestar with LESS smoke than you will with a lesser range. You can sear stuff a lot quicker, get a wok hotter faster, and generally scoot along at a rapid pace when it comes to the super high-output burners on the Bluestar. When you have a lower output burner, the food has to sit on the fire longer and all the time it is sitting there steaming, you are putting out cooking schmutz into the air. But here's the thing: most of us love cooking odors. We ALL (meaning us old dudes, you probably don't qualify, but work with me here) grew up smelling them, since no one had hoods back in the day.

Anyway, ideally, one would try to have a nice fat hood. If you can't shoehorn one into your house, do not sweat it. Get the Bluestar and cook away. You control the burners on the thing, you can shut them off if things get a bit too aromatic for you, and you will manage to get some of the stuff with a downdraft.

I will leave you with this: one of our superstar members at GW, rococogurl, a very sensible person with quite the flair for design (and photography and prose and God knows what else) had nothing more than a window to vent her Bertazzoni in her NYC flat. Wanna bet she didn't turn out some snazzy dishes with that range?

There is no need to hobble yourself with an inferior range simply because you cannot have the optimum vent. Do the best you can and press and let the naysayers howl!


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

I'm building a house, will probably have a 900 or 1200 cfm fan. My builder told me the inspector has never raised any questions about make up air. (I'm a window-cracker myself now with my current 1200 cfm hood).

I am in PA so I was just doing some internet surfing and found this article on an appliance store's website. They are not located in the township we are moving to, but they are in the general area. I'm sure you guys and gals already know about what he's talking about, but he does mention a system that doesn't seem too expensive.

Here you go.

Here is a link that might be useful: Make Up Air article


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

sarahdodge, if I understand you, the Jennair and the downdraft are an integral unit, so when you take out the Jennair, the downdraft leaves also. I had one of these! I was always frustrated by that underpowered downdraft. Now I have a Blue Star, and a hood.

If you get a Blue Star, you should get some kind of vent. A new downdraft if not a hood.


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

I have a Bluestar with no hood. Works great most of the time. I have learned to 'broil' some fatty foods like steaks and Hamburgers on the top rack in the oven (the IR broiler burns up the smoke in the oven).

So I'll go along with mojavean and his quote from Voltaire:"Le mieux est l'ennemi du bien."

I do think make up air should be taken seriously if you use powerful hood fans. Stooxie may be o.k. with a fresh air inlet on the furnace, but I read all the time about some death caused by a wall furnace starved for air because the intake was blocked.

Back drafting can do the same thing, it can suck away the air from the firebox before it can be replenished,(and then it's burning on it's own old vented air) and no one looks at the burners of their furnace to see the 'color' of their furnace flames.

The blue flames on your stove top is not the point at all. As for the oven, that is generally on for an hour or two, it's not important unless you're leaving your oven on all the time and using it as a furnace. And yes, old folks in apartments do this all the time and often die because the air shutter wasn't adjusted right, or there was dust preventing the oven burner from getting air fast enough. And modern ovens are not vented to the outside.

Maybe a decade ago, we had a young girl from India die in her apartment here in Berkeley, from carbon monoxide from a starved wall heater. The landlord,also Indian, rolled her up in a carpet to dispose of her but someone saw them on the sidewalk and called the police.

Everyone looked the other way until the Berkeley High School newspaper wondered why this girl wasn't enrolled in school. It seems she was used as a maid and sex slave for the landlord.

I've visited friends who have complained of 'headaches' in their apartments in the winter (yeah I know, it was 63 degrees today) and I'm like, 'duh' you have the floor vent covered with books/furniture/etc. and that's the intake to your furnace...do you want to die?


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

The Bluestar hoods are expensive compared to some of the other names I am seeing mentioned on GW.
Are they worth the premium?
I just ordered my very first pro range which will be a BS 30 RNB. I am looking at the BS 36 Pyramid Hood. With the flue and motor I am at about 2700 bucks.
Looking for any advice. For me that's alot of money and would really appreciate your thoughts.....


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

Any more follow up to the question asked by saradodge? "Does anyone have a 30 inch Bluestar WITHOUT an overhead vent? I am replacing an old down draft Jenn-Air and would LOVE the Bluestar, but don't really have an overhead vent option."

And, sara, what did you end up doing? We are in the exact same situation you were in.

Old Jennair downdraft. Plus we have an old leaky house in a cold climate, so I am not at all concerned about MUA. No really easy or cheapo solution. To be honest, we've had this range for nearly twenty years, and we do definitely use the fan at times, but I don't see all of these horrible results of not having a super heavy duty fan that so many people here talk about. Yes, way up at the top the exterior of my adjacent cupboards can be greasy, but honestly they only need to be cleaned every couple years because they truly aren't that bad/dirty and I am not that obsessive of a cleaner. And, when I last repainted my kitchen a couple years ago the walls and ceiling by the range really didn't seem super dirty or greasy the way many here seem to suggests they would be. Is it the types of things we cook or is it the minimal impact of the downdraft? I don't know.

So, I don't know how much super, duper vent fan power I need. I will admit that often if we use the JennAir's stove top grill, even with the downdraft running, the smoke detector in the adjacent hall will start to go off. That is the one thing that we most notice, but since we don't use the grill all that often, this doesn't happen all that often. And, as someone above said, if broiling is done in the Bluestar oven, this smoke is for the most part taken care of in there.

So, bottom line is are there Bluestar (or other high power range) owners out there who have non-existent or minimal venting? How is it working out for you? We are actually considering just removing our JennAir downdraft and installing a Bluestar or AR and then waiting a bit to make a ventilation decision so we would have some idea as to what we are really talking about as far as need...And, I can always open a window in the kitchen if smoke is the issue. Its been done here more than once (perhaps once or twice a year).


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

I've got a 36" Bluestar RNB range with a 36" hood that performs very well (Zephyr Tempest II with an 1100 cfm blower -- maybe that's less expensive than what you've seen thus far, although there's always the issue of labor). We didn't have MUA requirements to deal with, so that was a plus (tend to crack the sliding glass door across the kitchen whenever using the mid or high settings).

A good friend installed a BS cooktop in an island and was unable to do a proper hood for some reason -- I can ask what they think of their downdraft. I gather that they're ok with it.

This post was edited by djg1 on Sun, Dec 16, 12 at 19:23


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RE: Question for Bluestar owners

Actually the downdraft leaves when the JennAir leaves because it is an integral part of the JennAir. But, I would be very interested to hear what your friend's experience has beeen.


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